Xiaomi made it easy for us. The Mi 5 is one of the most beautiful, most powerful, and most capable smartphones to date and there is little to dwell on it. If the Mi 5 is available in your geographic region, our recommendation is to grab one right away.
Xiaomi is not ready to offer waterproofing just yet, but we can forgive its omission by being dazzled by the looks and thin profile. The lightweight glass body and sturdy metal frame, both thoughtfully crafted, may have had suffered from water-proofing anyway.
The Snapdragon 820 chip, the very bright screen, the enhanced 16MP snapper with 4-axis OIS, and the beefy battery are all an excellent complement to the charismatic Xiaomi Mi 5. The Android 6.0 Marshmallow allowed for native fingerprint reader and USB Type-C support, while the MIUI 7 launcher is as neat as ever.
Throughout our review we found the Mi 5 acing most of the key tests, which easily puts it around the top of the flagship chain. Considering the Mi 5 costs half the price of a Galaxy S7 or similar, it’s an easy recommendation.
The Xiaomi Mi 5 has no competition within its price bracket. The rest of the Snapdragon 820 devices are twice as expensive, as is the iPhone 6s. But if money is not the issue, then you should definitely check out the new waterproof Galaxy S7 and Xperia X Performance, as well as the innovative and modular LG G5. Each of those has its own pros and cons, but camera and performance-wise you’ll be OK with any of them.
The OnePlus 2 is cheaper than the Mi 5, offers similar display, but inferior design and chipset. Its camera is nothing to talk about either, nor is its battery life. But you can get the OnePlus 2 worldwide, and as we said – it comes cheaper, and as of recently – invite-free.