Characteristics: 55 inch 4K HDR panel, 3840 x 2160 pixels, (Samsung S-VA panel; 8ms response, 60Hz refresh rate), Amlogic 64-bit quad core, 2GB RAM, 8GB storage, Dual WiFi 2.4 GHz / 5 GHz band, Bluetooth 4.0, Dolby audio, 2 x 8 watts RMS speakers, 3 x HDMI (ARC), 1 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 2.0, Ethernet, 155 watts of power consumption, 17 , 8 kg
Advantages: High quality and beautiful design, incredible value, intuitive software and control, compatible with Bluetooth keyboards and headphones, plays all formats (including 4k video) via USB, free content via Patchwall, integrates with any which STB / DTH
The inconvenients: No app store of any kind, no support for Netflix / Amazon Prime (yet)
Have you ever wondered why there are so many price disparities between different brands / types of TVs of the same size?
You will get some information after browsing through the various TVs on the market – there are a bunch of low-cost, low-quality products out there that lack technology, design, and appeal. There are also high quality, high price products with the latest technology, superb design and high appeal. What if someone could reverse this equation? Offer high quality, large size, new technology and design that you can proudly show off – at a lower price than shoddy products? It is no longer a pipe dream. What Xiaomi has done for the smartphone market now it wants to do for TVs.
You might be wondering why they chose to launch this huge size first? We spoke to the company’s global MiTV business manager and he explained some important reasons to us. For starters, the 55 inch is the most popular size in China and they believe it will gain popularity here too because people are starting to prefer large screen TVs (50 inch and above). And this size offers the maximum value too: the best bang for your buck or lower cost per inch, if you prefer.
Other sizes may be launched at a later date. So this is the fourth generation MiTV, first shown at CES in 2017. It is only available in China and it took a long time because the company has taken a content-centric approach, spending time partnering with video providers (many are on board right from the start, including Voot, Hungama, Flickstree, Alt Balaji, Sony Liv and others). We’re told that support for Hotstar, Amazon Prime, and Netflix is coming soon.
In addition, the TV software called Patchwall (built on Android) has been completely customized for India, including support for 15 Indian languages, integration with almost all set-top box providers, universal search in streaming / live content and a detailed EPG (electronic guide program) for all Indian channels.
You can’t talk about MiTV 4 without talking about the design. At its thinnest, it’s an incredible 4.9mm – thinner than any smartphone. On the front it has minimal bezels on three sides. When turned off, even these glasses disappear, thanks to the frameless design.
It truly is one of the best TV models we’ve seen and the fact that it can be offered at such a low price is simply mind-blowing.
There are no buttons on the TV (except for a hidden on / off button) and it comes with an 11-button Bluetooth remote control. The slim remote doesn’t need to be pointed at the TV, and you’ll find you can operate it by just touch, without having to look. It can also control other sources via HDMI-CEC (consumer electronics control) or via the Mi IR cable (an accessory Rs 149).
The idea is to just use the Mi remote and leave out those complicated, multiple 50-button remotes.
The quality of the panel is excellent, with vivid colors and high brightness. If you can provide it with real 4k HDR content (either streamed or via local storage), you will really appreciate the quality.
That being said, even 720p and 1080p content is scaled brilliantly. The edge-lit LED panel provides higher contrast and uses local dimming to deliver truly deep blacks. The sound is crisp, clear and offers a good amount of bass. However, it doesn’t get too loud, so pairing it with a good set of speakers (via Bluetooth or optical) will make a big difference.
In the end, Xiaomi does what it knows best. It takes a Samsung S-VA 4k panel (because they know how to do it best) and pairs it with thoughtful design, clever software, and delivers the whole thing at a price you probably can’t resist. There is nothing else quite like it at the moment. They call it “fair prices” – we honestly don’t know how they set it so low. If they manage to enter in significant numbers, it is a formula capable of destroying the competition.