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Xiaomi's Mi A1 smartphone is the catalyst Google's Android One programme needs

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Xiaomi Mi A1

The Xiaomi Mi A1 is available in Black, Gold and Pink color options and is priced at INR14,999 (around U.S. $234/€196) and should be available all around the world as of September 12.

If you've been following rumors about the handset, you'd know that the Mi A1 is basically a repackaged Mi 5X with pure Android running through its veins. The stock Android experience will come along with timely security updates, faster boot up speed, and picture in picture feature and more.

Android One is Google's program designed to partner with smartphone manufacturers across the world to create "high-quality" but "low-cost" Android smartphones. The device is launching with an old version of Android, Android 7.1, and Google's definition of "timely upgrades" is "an upgrade to Android Oreo before the end of the year". Of course, that also allows them to inch a tiny bit closer to the fragmentation-free Android user base they've always dreamt of. The dual camera setup comes into play, but we've several other dual camera options available in the market as well. It will run Android 7.1.2 Nougat out of the box. The phone has 12 Megapixel Wide angel camera with 12 Megapixel Telephoto lens. Also, because there's third-party skinning involved - and because Xiaomi likes to update each and every device in its portfolio more or less on similar lines - the fact that users have to wait longer for updates, doesn't go down well with many. However, by joining hands with Xiaomi - a smartphone maker which has previously made quite a name for itself with devices that are light on the pocket but heavy on specs - Google is looking to right the wrongs of the past. On the front, it has a 5 Megapixel of front facing camera with which you can take selfies and can make video calls.

Xiaomi Mi A1 comes with dual camera setup on its back side, it comes with a 12 Megapixel rear camera and 12 Megapixel secondary camera with Dual-tone LED flash and Phase Detection AutoFocus.

The smartphone packs in a 3,080mAh battery, which is not much on paper, but adequate enough to deliver a day's back-up if you don't stress it too much. Also, just like how it has been recently on Lenovo and Moto phones, the Lenovo K8 Plus has a dedicated MicroSD card slot for the storage expansion if the 32GB internal storage is not enough. It is more than enough for most tasks. The Android P is also promised for the Mi A1, when the new software launches. The display is vivid and offers rich colours. Text in ebooks and webpages look crisp. Viewing angles were fine as well, in my brief time with the phone. It has a more edge-to-edge screen, which also offers a more immersive 18:9 aspect ratio.

The look and feel of affordable smartphones has improved a lot in the last few months.

Mi A1 is Xiaomi's first Android One smartphone. Eventually, Android One was launched in many other countries like Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Philippines, Bangladesh, Nepal, and many more. For starters, the Mi A1 ushers the Android One name into the market Google failed to crack years ago.

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