Xiaomi has always walked the line between budget-friendly prices and high-end hardware. However, it looks like the upcoming Mi5 may opt for premium specs even if it means a higher cost for fans.
According to Cheng Guifeng, Chief Engineer of the China Telecom Guangzhou Research Institute, the Mi5 could cost at least 2499 yuan ($385), with some variants running as high as 3000 yuan ($462). That’s a pretty big step up from the Mi4, which was available for as little as $320 at launch. Then again, it may be worth the higher price if Xiaomi’s next phone can live up to the hype.
The Mi5 is expected to sport a sleek metal design, a fingerprint reader and a pressure-sensitive display to rival Apple’s 3D Touch. It’s also rumored to run Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 820 processor with a Quad HD display, a 3000mAh battery, a 16-megapixel rear camera, 4GB of RAM and a USB-C charging port. That all adds up to a pretty powerful device, though whether Xiaomi’s fans are ready to pay extra remains to be seen.
The company has built its name around affordability – so what happens if that changes? The Mi5 could mark a big transition for the company as it steps up to compete directly with flagship phones from Apple and Samsung.