Xiaomi has piqued consumer interest in the smart TV segment by offering features that ensure great value in their budget televisions. Its latest Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49, for instance, has a solid feature set, Full HD and HDR, and PatchWall support. And the television runs on Android TV giving users to apps on Google Play store, Google Cast compatibility and voice search for content.
But what are the things you should know before buying one? Here’s my review after using the TV for little over a week.
Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A PRO 49 specifications: 49-inch IPS FHD (1920×1080) display | HDR10 | 60Hz panel refresh rate | 10.9Kgs weight (with stand) | 2 USB ports | 3 HDMI ports | Bluetooth v4.2 | Wi-Fi | Ethernet |2 x 10W speakers | Amlogic 64-bit Quad-core chip | Mali-450 GPU | 2GB RAM | 8GB ROM | Android TV (Android 8.1 Oreo 8.1 |PatchWall
Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49 price in India: Rs 29,999
Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49: Design and build quality
TV 4A Pro 49 availability, Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49 features Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A PRO 49 looks good, though it doesn’t come close to Mi LED Smart TV 4 in terms of design.
Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A PRO 49 looks good, though it doesn’t come close to Mi LED Smart TV 4 in terms of design. The frame around the TV is narrow, but not narrow enough to be called bezel-less.
But the build quality is better than what you would expect for the price. You can either wall mount the TV or put it on a table top. I used the plastic stand to prop it up on a table. Mi LED TV 4A PRO 49 remote control may not be attractive, but it works as advertised. The built-in microphone and voice button offer Google Assistant support.
Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49: Ports and connectivity
Just on the back of the Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49, you will find three HDMI ports (including one with ARC), two USB ports, a coaxial connection for antenna or cable and S/PDIF for audio. In my opinion, three HDMI ports is enough for connecting a cable or satellite box, a game console, and a Blu-ray player.
Unfortunately, there is no 3.5mm headphone jack, but you can always connect the standard Bluetooth-enabled headphones with the Mi TV.
Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49: Picture quality and Audio
The 49-inch display ticks all the expected boxes for a budget-friendly TV: Full HD resolution, HDR 10 support and a native refresh rate of 60Hz. No, this is not a 4K Ultra HD TV. In our testing, I found colour accuracy to be accurate. This is pretty much identical to the results from any smart TV priced under Rs 40,000.
When it comes to contrast, it fared really well. I got the best results at default brightness settings. But I want to make one thing very clear: don’t expect the same level of colors and contrasts as in an OLED TV. Most LED-backlit displays do not show fine details like shadows and nighttime scenes really well. This is a common problem with LED-backlit displays.
The TV also offers HDR10 support, but other HDR formats like Dolby Vision aren’t supported. In our tests, the HDR performance was average at best. This TV set has a built-in set of 20W speakers. Fortunately, they offer room-filling volume with no noticeable distortion.
Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49: Android TV and PatchWall support
TV 4A Pro 49 availability, Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49 features PatchWall offers a wide selection of content in English, Hindi and regional languages.
This is the first TV from Xiaomi to run Google’s Android TV OS (Android 8.1 Oreo) along with Xiaomi’s custom PatchWall UI, apparently customised for Indian users. The user interface is easy to use and there is no learning curve, which is always a good thing. I don’t want to get into PatchWall UI again, as the interface has been used across all Mi TV smartphones in India.
Xiaomi has inked partnerships with a number of local OTT players (AltBalaji, Eros Now, SonyLiv, HotStar, Hungama, etc). PatchWall offers a wide selection of content in Hindi and regional languages. However, it is a shame that Netflix and Amazon Prime Video are still not supported, though the company did mention that the latter will soon come to Mi TV soon.
Since it is powered by Google’s Android TV platform, you can download various apps from the Play Store such as YouTube, Plex, among others. What I really liked about the Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49 is the way you can search for content using the voice feature on the remote control.
With a built-in Google Assistant support, you can search and access content from movies, TV shows to thousands of apps, with just voice commands. This feature was missing from the Mi LED Smart TV 4.
Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49 review: Should you buy it?
Yes. For most consumers looking for an affordable smart TV under Rs 30,000, the Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49 fits the bill perfectly. Of course, there are other smart TVs available in the market with top-of-the-line features and specifications, but they cost a lot.
If you’re a TV buyer who wants to buy a value for money smart TV with acceptable colour quality and HDR support, I will strongly encourage to buy Xiaomi Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49.
Xiaomi has been working on improvements for in-display fingerprint scanning
By Nancy Cohen
Fingerprint sensors—modern tools of convenience or awkwardly placed tools that are just plain difficult for instant use?
Aamir Siddiqui in XDA Developers is no stranger to the shortcomings in present-day in-display fingerprint scanners. He thinks they have “a long way to go before they can completely and perfectly replace the conventional fingerprint scanners,” but he foresees change.
“In-display fingerprint scanners are fast gaining popularity, and we are surely going to see a lot more of them in 2019. While the current generation in-display scanners may not be quicker or even more reliable than the conventional fingerprint scanners, future generations of this tech will continue to improve on these areas to provide a better experience.”
Better news does seem to be in the wings; The Verge’s Sam Byford, who covers Asia happenings, reported on in-display fingerprint sensors being worked on by Xiaomi.
The news revolves around a new type of in-display fingerprint scanner technology which has been confirmed by Xiaomi President and co-founder, Lin Bin. GSMArena similarly described a “next gen under display fingerprint scanner.”
The new sensor will solve one big issue, and that is being unable to unlock the phone without having to look at the screen. User to fingerprint sensor: Hey, you’re reading one tiny tiny area of my screen. Just.
“This means you have to be very specific about where you tap your finger, and makes it almost impossible to unlock your phone without looking at the display,” wrote Hadlee Simons in Android Authority.
Byford reported on a video demonstrating a prototype phone with a new fingerprint sensor that has an active area of 25 x 50mm. Translation: users could unlock it more easily by tapping, Byford said, “within a much larger region than the thumbprint-sized scanners found on several phones released last year.”
Siddiqui similarly noted that “Xiaomi claims that you can unlock the phone without looking at the screen now, which shows off their confidence in the larger recognition area.”
Bam-boom. “You can set up your finger with only one tap and then unlock the locked screen with pressing pretty much everywhere,” said GSMArena. Since the active authentication area is 25mm x 50.2mm, said Simons in Android Authority, “it’s an exponentially bigger area than that found on commercially available in-display fingerprint sensors right now.”
GSMArena added, “According to Lin Bin, the unlocking area is 50 mm by 25 mm, which is more than five times the UD area now and over 15 times the standard scanner on the back, used by Xiaomi.”
On Friday, Ajaay Srinivasan, The Mobile Indian provided some background: “The news comes from a video posted on Bin’s Weibo account which revealed the latest implementation of the advanced in-display fingerprint scanning technology. The video reveals a Xiaomi prototype device feature a new fingerprint unlock sensor which spans for an area that measures at 50 x 25 mm.”
Dates? Byford said Xiamoi president Lin Bin did not mention when such a device would become a shipping product.
GSMArena noted what Bin had to say moving forward. If it has a “great reception among fans, the company will consider placing the scanner in future devices.”
If you have ever fumbled around trying to access your fingerprint scanner, you will appreciate this video, posted on January 15, showing Xiaomi’s improved access design where unlocking does not mean you are required to look at the screen.
Beyond the obvious advantage of being able to access the scanner more easily on the screen, there is another plus that was noticed by Sahil Kapoor in iGyaan: “Notably, the fingerprint sensor appears to be very fast and accurate.”
Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K With 150-Inch Virtual Screen Launched in China
Although ordinary projectors are still a popular option, laser projectors have been gaining prominence in the last couple of years. These projectors are designed differently, allowing for a shorter throw area and the ability to project even in a well-lit room. The latest laser projector to make the news comes from Chinese electronics company Xiaomi through its Mijia brand. The company has launched the Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K in China, priced at CNY 9,999 (approximately Rs. 1,05,000). As the name suggests, the projector sports a 4K resolution on its virtual 150-inch screen projection.
The new Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K is the successor to the previous Mijia Laser Projector, which was previously priced at CNY 9,999 but came with a full-HD resolution. The latest product keeps the price and virtual screen size the same, but bumps up the resolution to 4K (3840×2160 pixels).
For now, the product is available as a pre-sale offer, and can be booked for an advance payment of CNY 100 (approximately Rs. 1,050). As with other laser projectors, the Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K can be placed near a wall or projector screen, and directly project onto it from a short throw. This allows for easier placement as compared to traditional long-throw projectors, along with a virtual screen size of up to 150 inches.
The Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K comes with built-in speakers, three HDMI ports, one USB port, and sockets for audio and Ethernet cables. You also get smart connectivity with the MIUI TV interface and a remote to control the projector. Unlike the TV range, the projector is a part of the Mijia brand from Xiaomi.
Ultimate Ears Boom 3 Wireless Speaker with ‘Magic Button’ Launched in India
Wireless speakers come in all shapes, sizes and prices, but there has been a tendency for certain products and brands to stand out from the competition. One such popular brand has been Ultimate Ears (UE), the personal audio manufacturer owned by Swiss computer peripherals manufacturer Logitech. The Boom range from Ultimate Ears has been among its most popular lines, and the latest product from the line is the Ultimate Ears Boom 3. The new wireless speaker has been launched in India, priced at Rs. 15,995.
The Ultimate Ears Boom 3 is set to go on sale on Amazon India starting January 17. The product will be available in three colour options – Black, Blue, and Red. The speaker comes with an IP67 water resistance rating, which means that it is certified to survive significant exposure to water and dust, and can therefore be used safely outdoors. Interestingly, the Ultimate Ears Boom 3 floats in water, a feature that would appeal to a lot of buyers.
Another new feature on the UE Boom 3 is the ‘Magic Button’, which is said to make music control and playback easier. The speaker does retain the cylindrical design of its predecessors, although the styling has been refreshed. However, the familiar ‘plus’ and ‘minus’ physical volume buttons are still there. The USB port has also been repositioned to make charging the speaker a bit easier.
As the successor to the capable Ultimate Ears Boom 2, the UE Boom 3 was launched in August last year globally, and has taken a few months to see a launch in India. Interestingly, the UE Boom 2 is also still on sale for around Rs . 10,000.