To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

Best Xiaomi phone 2023: Which Xiaomi smartphone is right for you?

Xiaomi is the rising star of the smartphone world. Find the best handset for your needs and budget

Whether it’s a budget buy or something a little more premium, Xiaomi has been producing stunning smartphones with top-notch speeds and excellent cameras for a little while now.

UK consumers are spoilt for choice, too. There are the more affordable Redmi models and the equally budget Poco line; smartphones built for gamers under the Black Shark name; or those topline flagship devices that get the full Xiaomi branding. Whatever series fits you best, the majority of Xiaomi devices are cheaper than competing Samsung or Apple phones, while offering a similar list of features and componentry.

That’s despite the Chinese company rolling the dice on innovative advancements in smartphone technology, including lightning-quick charging speeds and dual displays. Ranking only behind Samsung and Apple worldwide, and appearing in the top five list in the UK, Xiaomi might be the up-and-coming smartphone brand – and it’s well worth taking a look at what it has to offer.

There are a lot of Xiaomi phones to muddle through, however, so picking out the top-tier models can be a challenge – especially when paying more doesn’t always mean better value. To help you out, we’ve listed the best Xiaomi devices for a range of needs and budgets so you don’t have to search high and low for its greatest hits.

How we test Xiaomi smartphones

When we receive a Xiaomi smartphone for review, we test each handset using a variety of benchmarks. For both CPU and gaming performance, we use the Geekbench and GFXBench applications, which can both be found in the Google Play store. After running these tests, we have a set of performance numbers which we can then use to compare overall speeds against competitor handsets.

The phone’s display is tested using a colorimeter and DisplayCal software. We place the colorimeter on the screen and run the various tests, providing us with data that tells us how good the display is at reproducing colours, as well as the maximum contrast and brightness.

For battery life, we set the screen brightness to a standardised luminance, switch off all data connections, and play a looped video until the battery dies. We record the timestamp that the video reached the next time we switch on the phone.

Camera testing is performed using a variety of different shooting scenarios, including low-light night shots, scenic pictures, portraits, and zoomed images. We always use a comparator device whenever testing a phone’s cameras, and evaluate all shooting features before delivering our final verdict.

The best Xiaomi smartphones you can buy in 2023

1. Xiaomi 13: Best Xiaomi phone

Price when reviewed: £849 | Check price at Xiaomi

The Xiaomi 13 Pro might be the most all-singing and all-dancing of the brand’s lineup, but pound for pound, the non-Pro Xiaomi 13 is the better value offering. You’re still getting the immensely powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, delivering performance that rivals the Xiaomi 13 Pro, as well as the Samsung Galaxy S23 and iPhone 14. While those models can be unwieldy for smaller hands, the Xiaomi 13 is much more compact, making it a much more pocketable proposition.

The 6.36in AMOLED display is a colour-accurate delight, with the 120Hz refresh rate keeping scrolling smooth as silk. Unlike the 12 series, the non-Pro Xiaomi 13 gets a 10MP telephoto lens to play with, slotting in next to the 50MP main camera and 12MP ultrawide sensor. Battery life takes a bit of a hit compared to the Xiaomi 12, lasting around 16 and a half hours in our video rundown test, but the phone at least comes with a 67W charger that can bring the battery from empty to full in less than 45 minutes.

Read our full Xiaomi 13 review for more details

Key specs – Processor: 3.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2; Screen: 6.36in, 2,400 x 1,080; Camera: 50MP (wide), 10MP (telephoto), 12MP (ultrawide); Storage: 256GB; Operating system: Android 13

Check price at Xiaomi

2. Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G: Best Xiaomi smartphone under £300

Price when reviewed: £275 | Check price at Amazon

The Redmi Note 10 Pro was one of our favourite value phones of 2021, so we had high hopes that its follow-up was just as good. Thankfully, the Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G offers the same sky-high value for money, plus some new features, at a remarkably similar cost.

There’s an improved Snapdragon 695 processor, faster 67W charging and 5G connectivity on top of the quality quad camera array – featuring a massive 108MP main sensor – and silky smooth 120Hz screen.

As a package, the Note 11 Pro isn’t a major advance on the Note 10 Pro though, meaning you can save a little bit more if having these extras doesn’t bother you. Still, we would recommend paying that little bit more for the newer model – especially for the 5G connectivity – to extend the life of your next smartphone in return.

Read our full Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G review for more details

Key specs – Processor: 3GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 5G; Screen: 6.67in, 1,080 x 2,400; Camera: 108MP (wide), 8MP (ultrawide), 2MP (macro); Storage: 64GB, 128GB; Operating system: Android 11

3. Xiaomi Redmi Note 11: Best budget Xiaomi

Price when reviewed: £168 | Check price at Amazon

It might seem like every smartphone costs more than four figures these days, but you can still get fantastic phones at a lower price point, with the Redmi Note 11 being one of them.

With its speedy Snapdragon 680 processor, this cut-priced Xiaomi out-performs phones well above its price point. Not only that, but on the front of the phone you’ll find a lovely, 6.43in FHD+ screen with a 90Hz refresh rate and a quad-camera array on the rear. It’s so good for the price that we made it our favourite budget smartphone of any brand: if that’s not a worthy endorsement I don’t know what is.

Read our full Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 review for more details

Key specs – Processor: 2.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 680; Screen: 6.43in, 2,400 x 1,080; Camera: 50MP, 8MP (wide), 2MP (macro) and 2MP (depth); Storage: 128GB, 256GB; Operating system: Android 11

4. Xiaomi 12 Lite: Best mid-range Xiaomi

Price when reviewed: £359 | Check price at Xiaomi

Our pick of the mid-range price bracket of smartphones is the Xiaomi 12 Lite. It has rapid 67W charging as well as a beautifully smooth and colour-accurate 120Hz display and Snapdragon 778G processor – a chipset that absolutely blitzed the competition in our review.

Overall, you’re getting a lot for your money here, especially if you’re after a Xiaomi flagship but don’t have the funds to splurge on the beefier Xiaomi 12 listed above. You won’t be compromising much in the way of features, with the added benefit of saving a lot of cash.

Read our full Xiaomi 12 Lite review for more details

Key specs – Processor: 2.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G 5G; Screen: 6.55in, 2,400 x 1,080; Camera: 108MP (wide), 8MP (ultrawide), 2MP (macro); Storage: 128GB, 256GB; Operating system: Android 12

Check price at Xiaomi

5. Xiaomi 12T: The best flagship killer

Price when reviewed: £437 l Check price at Amazon

Slightly more expensive than most of the phones on this list, the Xiaomi 12T is an excellent flagship-like handset at a non-flagship price. Undercutting our top pick, the Xiaomi 12 Pro, by a sizeable margin, the 12T is fitted with all sorts of flagship-grade niceties, including a sharp, colour-accurate 6.67in AMOLED screen and a more than capable 108MP main camera.

This main camera is flanked by an 8MP ultra-wide unit, with both cameras performing well in our camera tests for review (the third, a 2MP depth-sensing unit, isn’t hugely useful, however). The MediaTek Dimensity 8100-U processor performed well in our CPU and GPU tests, and the stupidly fast 120W charging is a real bonus, too.

Read our full Xiaomi 12T review for more details

Key specs – Processor: 2.85GHz MediaTek Dimensity 8100-U; Screen: 6.67in, 2,712 x 1,220; Camera: 108MP (wide), 8MP (ultrawide), 2MP (macro); Storage: 128GB, 256GB; Operating system: Android 12

6. Xiaomi Poco F4: The best-value Xiaomi phone

Price when reviewed: From £379 | Check price at Xiaomi

While all of the entries on this list offer an impressive amount of functionality for their respective prices, none achieve quite as attractive a balance between cost and features as the Poco F4. Improvements over the Poco F3 include Dolby Vision support, allowing for better quality streaming, a more powerful 64MP main camera and 67W fast charging that fills the battery in around 38 minutes.

All of this is wrapped in a sleek package with a smooth 120Hz AMOLED display and powered by a chipset that manages to compete with some more expensive phones. The secondary cameras aren’t anything special, and the glass back is a fingerprint magnet, but otherwise, there’s very little to dislike about this exceptional bargain of a phone.

Read our full Xiaomi Poco F4 review for more details

Key specs – Processor: 3.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 5G; Screen: 6.67in, 2,400 x 1,080; Camera: 64MP, 8MP (ultrawide), 2MP (macro); Storage: 128GB, 256GB; Operating system: Android 12

Check price at Xiaomi

Read more

Best Buys