The Xiaomi Mi 5 features a new 5.15" IPS display of 1080p resolution. Even though most of the rumors suggested an upgrade to QHD resolution, Xiaomi chose to keep the Full HD screen, and we don't mind that. A pixel density of 428ppi is more than respectable and leaves the Snapdragon 820 chip with power to spare on tasks and productivity.
The viewing angles are impressive as well, there is hardly any color shift or contrast loss when looking the Mi 5's display at an angle. It isn't AMOLED grade regarding contrast, but it sure is the next best thing.
The new display utilizes 16 LEDs on backlighting, allegedly four more than most modern-day flagships, and Xiaomi claims it will provide more even backlighting at up to 600 nits of brightness. Our tests confirmed the claim for maximum brightness as we measured 628nits worth of luminance.
The minimum display brightness is 0.7nits, which is perfectly suitable for late-night reading in a dark room and it's even lower than the Galaxy S7's. The screen's contrast ratio is excellent at 1227:1.
When it comes to color rendering, the Mi 5 has an excellent color rendering with an average DeltaE of 3.2 and a maximum deviation of 6.9 in the whites. Anything below 4 is considered calibration level accuracy.
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The Xiaomi Mi 5 performed excellently in our sunlight legibility test, too. Posting a very high value for a non-AMOLED panel, the Mi 5 ranks higher than the Xperia Z5 and close to the AMOLED Lumia 950.
Xiaomi Mi 5 has got pretty much the same battery as its predecessor - it's a 3,000 mAh Li-Po unit, sealed, of course. We ran our battery test and the Xiaomi Mi 5 scored a 92h rating, which means you can count on the battery to last just a few hours short of 4 days if you do an hour each of calling, browsing the web and video playback a day. Such usage pattern may be somewhat artificial, but we've established it, so our battery results are comparable across devices.
Adding a second SIM card cuts only 1 hour from the total endurance rating. Overall, we're quite happy with the result as it's well beyond the 68-hour rating of the Mi 4.
The Mi 5 did well on all tests - 3G talks, web browsing, video playback, and it posted excellent scores on standby, which makes it a solid overall performer.
The battery testing procedure is described in detail in case you're interested in the nitty-gritties. You can also check out our complete battery test table, where you can see how all of the smartphones we've tested will compare under your own typical use.
The Xiaomi Mi 5 supports 7 LTE bands, quad-band GSM and quad-band 3G connectivity with HSPA support. You can tap to an LTE network on either SIM, but once you do, the second one will be limited to 3G or GSM connectivity. You can even have both registered on 3G networks, when 4G is not available.
The rest of the connectivity features include dual-band Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac support and Wi-Fi Direct. Wireless screen mirroring is available via the Miracast protocol.
There is also support for Bluetooth 4.2, NFC, GPS, and GLONASS. There is no FM radio support, though - we tried installing an FM app - but there is no FM hardware.
The Mi 5 is Xiaomi's second device to support USB Type-C - it's the new reversible connector for USB that builds on top of USB 3.1.
The IR blaster is located on the top and coupled with the right software, it can be used to operate any remotely controlled home appliance, turning the Xiaomi Mi 5 into a universal remote. Xiaomi provides a new version of its MiRemote app right out of the box.
Xiaomi has deemed the Mi Remote and Mi Home Center (for controlling home appliances) quite important, as it provided a shortcut at the bottom left on the lockscreen.