Xiaomi has been pushing the envelope with its mid-range devices in the last few years with low price points and impressive hardware. The just-announced Redmi 3 takes things to a new level, though. For the equivalent of $106 (RMB 699), you get a phone with a brand new Snapdragon chip, a metal chassis, and a massive 4100 mAh battery. And when I say "you," I don't really mean you personally, most likely. This phone is launching in China only for the time being.

Here's the full spec sheet for your perusal.

  • 5-inch 720P HD display
  • Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 616 processor
  • 2GB RAM
  • 16GB storage with microSD card slot (supports up to 128GB)
  • 4100mAh battery with 5V/2A fast charging
  • 139.3 x 69.6 x 8.5mm; 144g
  • 13-megapixel, F/2.0 rear camera with PDAF for fast 0.1s autofocus - 5-megapixel F/2.2 front camera
  • Dual SIM (second slot doubles as microSD card slot)

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 616 should give a much needed performance boost compared to the anemic 615 that has been used in so many other budget devices. That's paired with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage with a microSD card slot. However, the card slot is in the second SIM slot, so you can only use one if you don't need a second SIM. It will run MIUI 7, but the underlying version of Android isn't clear—probably some version of Lollipop. The Chinese variant won't have any Google services, of course.

red2

Xiaomi has been revealing some details on the MIUI forums over the last few days, but now all the specs and the price are official. Mi.com doesn't have a landing page yet, but give it a little while. The Redmi 3 is launching on January 12th in China on Mi.com and Tmall. I imagine it will come to other regions where Xiaomi sells phones eventually, so probably not the US.

Press Release

Xiaomi announces Redmi 3 with a full metal body and 4100 mAh battery

BEIJING, 11 January 2016 -- Leading smartphone company Xiaomi announced Redmi 3 today,
which features a beautiful new look and upgraded features from its predecessor, including a
4100 mAh battery. With a full metal body and an all-new lattice design, made up of 4166 stars
woven together to reflect a gorgeous arrangement of diamonds, Redmi 3 goes on sale for RMB 699 starting 12 January.

Despite measuring just 8.5mm and weighing only 144 grams, Redmi 3 packs a powerful 4100
mAh battery with an increased battery density of 685Wh/L, which extends the talk time of its
predecessor by 80%. Redmi 3 comes with support for 5V/2A fast charging. It also ships with
MIUI 7, which includes battery optimisations that can further prolong the use of the device by up to 25%.

The two SIM card slots on Redmi 3 offer support for all three major operators in China. If only
one SIM card is used, the second slot doubles as a microSD card slot, which supports cards up to 128GB in capacity. Combined with the 16GB internal storage, users will have no lack of
space for music, videos and photos.

Here are the key specs of Redmi 3:

- 5-inch 720P HD display
- Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 616 processor
- 2GB RAM
- 16GB storage with microSD card slot (supports up to 128GB)
- 4100mAh battery
- 139.3 x 69.6 x 8.5mm; 144g
- 13-megapixel, F/2.0 rear camera with PDAF for fast 0.1s autofocus
- 5-megapixel F/2.2 front camera
- Dual SIM (second slot doubles as microSD card slot)

Available in three colours, Redmi 3 will be available at RMB 699 in China starting tomorrow on
Mi.com and Tmall.

About Xiaomi

Xiaomi was founded in 2010 by serial entrepreneur Lei Jun, who believes that high-quality technology doesn't need to cost a fortune. We create remarkable hardware, software, and internet services for and with the help of our Mi fans. We incorporate their feedback into our product range, which currently includes the Mi Note Pro, Mi Note, Mi 4, Redmi 2, Mi TV, Mi Band and other accessories. With more than 61 million handsets sold in 2014, and products launched in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, India, Indonesia and Brazil, Xiaomi is expanding its footprint across the world to become a global brand.