08 Oct 2019

Is Xiaomi prepping an 8K smartphone?

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Xiaomi is not short of ambition, as this $2800 Xiaomi Mi MIX Alpha concept proves Xiaomi is not short of ambition, as this $2800 Xiaomi Mi MIX Alpha concept proves Xiaomi

A crawl through some of the code buried in the latest version of Xiaomi’s custom Android implementation hints at an 8K recording capability.

Possibly one of the most thankless tasks on the face of the entire planet right now is maintaining security over new smartphone launches. These things are leaky by nature — its difficult to think of a single surprise to come when Google launches the Pixel 4 next week — and that is further exacerbated by an army of enthusiasts ready to crawl over any publicly unveiled data to hunt for further clues.

That’s what XDA Developers has done with the latest custom version of Android, MIUI 11, released by Chinese tech giant Xiaomi for its latest series of smartphones. MIUI 11 has unleashed a barrage of new features alongside a totally overhauled design, one of which is an updated camera app. And once the betas started rolling out in China people started crawling all over the code, which turned up a couple of rather interesting lines, namely:

Screenshot 2019-10-07 at 08.22.41.png

That strongly suggests some sort of 8K capability. Additional evidence is found in classes related to configuring video quality that point to an output resolution of 7680x4320, and the 8K @30fps logo next to the Mi logo below which was also pulled directly by the XDA team from the latest MIUI Camera app.


All of which appears fairly conclusive and points to the fact that 8K capture is coming to a smartphone in your pocket (trade embargoes permitting) soon. There’s no idea what model yet, and indeed it looks like the Snapdragon chipset at the heart of the Xiaomi range will have to be updated before it can support it, especially at 30fps. But the company is not short of ambition and MWC is less than six months away now…

Andy Stout

Andy has spent over two decades writing about all aspects of the broadcast and film industries for a variety of high-profile industry publications on both sides of the Atlantic. During that time the industry has moved from 4:3 SD to 16:9 SD to HD and now on to 4K HDR. He's getting kind of curious to see where it goes next.

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