This story was originally published and last updated .
Xiaomi's phones are sold at incredibly competitive prices because there's very little profit margin — much like Amazon and Google, the company subsidizes its hardware with income from online services and data from its users. A recent report from Forbes claims Xiaomi's Mint Browser collects more user data than is necessary, but the company has denied any wrongdoing.
For a long time, it was impossible to save your phone's internal audio while you're recording your screen, but that has changed with Android 10. The latest stable release of the OS comes with an API that gives apps access to internal audio. While it was created with accessibility features in mind, like Live Caption, it can also be used by other apps. Many screen recorders have already been updated to take advantage of that, and we've got a collection of the best of the bunch for you.
Xiaomi’s spin-off brand Poco made a splash with its first phone by bringing a Snapdragon 845 chip to the $300 price bracket, reminding many of OnePlus’s early days. A year and a half after the Poco F1 was unveiled, the company is finally coming out with a follow-up called the Poco X2, initially only for the Indian market. The handset is basically a relabeled Redmi K30, which was announced in China alongside the $284 K30 5G in December 2019.
For all of MIUI's troubles, it remains as the default software user interface on every one of Xiaomi's smartphones in China. And given that the company posts timely updates on this platform, it should matter how people experience this default state. Thus, we now see MIUI 11 come into play with a focus on font and sound aesthetics as well as a few new productivity apps and a couple of under-the-hood tweaks.
Xiaomi is in a bad spot right now. Revenues aren't growing as fast as investors want. Competition in a saturated smartphone market is stiff. And software sales and service fees just aren't stacking up. Part of that formula comes from the ads plaguing its MIUI software experience from embeds in the web browser right down to the settings. Now, the company is beta testing an ad-free experience that may end up in the final update to MIUI 10.
One of the many reasons I don't like iOS is its lack of an app drawer. Indeed, I want things to be very organized, and dumping all icons on my homescreen just doesn't work for me. Xiaomi, however, preferred to mimic Apple and decided to go against Android standards by removing the app drawer in its MIUI launcher, which essentially meant all icons had to be on the home screen. However, the company appears to be opening up by letting users enable the drawer in MIUI.
Xiaomi maintains its custom skin of Android, called MIUI, which ships on most of the company's devices — the main exceptions being its Android One and Android Go phones. Xiaomi allows phone owners to try out new MIUI features in the public MIUI Beta program, but now that's coming to an end.
MIUI is one of the most powerful Android OEM skins, if you take the time to delve into it and put some prejudice aside. Sure, it has some shortcomings, like any other software, and it does some things in its own weird ways, but it has plenty of interesting features and additions. There's one aspect though that outright annoyed me when I tested the Poco F1: ads. Thankfully, Xiaomi is now recognizing they're a little too much and will be getting rid of some of them in future updates to MIUI.