At the end of August the Chinese smartphone market was treated to an unexpected surprise with the sudden release of Xiaomi’s flagship device, the Mi4. On August 26th Xiaomi without warning released 100,000 Mi4’s for sale and within a day the devices had sold out. For those of you who missed our earlier report, the Mi4 offers a 5″ screen with full HD (1080 x 1920p) resolution. In addition, the Mi4 is loaded with 3GB RAM, Snapdragon 801 processor, Android 4.4 (KitKat), 13MP rear camera and 8MP front shooter. Generally speaking, this was a good addition to the smartphone world and matched up well against the big players. However, the one issue with the device was its lack of internal memory. Similar to the OnePlus One the Mi4 was a fixed unit and did not provide users with the option of additional SD storage. Instead, users were limited to the pre-installed 16GB internal memory. That was of course, until today.
Similar to its unexpected initial release, Xiaomi has again suddenly and without warning launched a 64GB version in China. Again similar to the OnePlus One the Mi4 is now available in both a small (16GB) and large (64GB) version. This will be seen as a welcome addition to the Mi4 family as in reality 16GB is just not enough when comparing to other high-end devices on the market. The Mi4 is a good-enough device and the lack of storage was a significant issue which thankfully has now been addressed. Due to the surprise-nature of the original 16GB release and the small time frame between the two devices release dates it is evident Xiaomi always intended to release the larger version soon after the 16GB version. Whether this was intentional to maximize initial sales of the smaller unit is not as clear although the critics out there will certainly imply this.
As for the price, well the 64GB version is available to buy from the Xiaomi store for $499.99 (excluding tax) which is a bargain when considering the standard 16GB version will set you back $439.99 (excluding tax). For an additional $60 for 4x the internal memory it is a steal. As for the number of devices available this is anyone’s guess. Based on the previous 16GB limited release don’t be surprised if this also sells out within the next few days.