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The Xiaomi 13 Pro takes aim at Samsung’s Galaxy S23 Ultra

Unveiled at MWC 2023, the Xiaomi 13 Pro looks to be one of the most premium Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 phones yet

The Xiaomi 13 Pro has been officially announced at MWC 2023, and its specifications could position it as a (slightly) more affordable alternative to the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra. The Xiaomi 13 uses the latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, joined by 12GB of RAM and 256GB of onboard storage. Bluetooth 5.3 and Wi-Fi 7 are both supported here, though the 13 Pro does still lack a microSD slot.

A 4,820mAh battery keeps the lights on, and once depleted, the provided 120W fast charger can apparently juice it back up to full in just 19 minutes. 50W wireless charging and 10W reverse wireless charging are also supported, with the latter allowing you to use the phone’s power to charge compatible devices.

Like the Xiaomi 12 Pro before it, the 13 Pro’s 6.73in AMOLED display is capable of outputting at both a WQHD+ (3,200 x 1,440) resolution and 120Hz refresh rate. With the 12 Pro, you needed to go into the display settings if you wanted both of these running concurrently, so it’s likely that the same will hold true for the 13 Pro. A protective layer of Gorilla Glass Victus covers the display, and the whole phone is rated IP68, meaning that it’s fully dustproof and can survive being submerged in 1.5m of water for up to 30 minutes.

Where the Xiaomi 13 uses a 2.5D glass panel on the rear, the 13 Pro opts for a 3D bio-ceramic backplate. Moulded into this is the triple camera array module, which offers the same hat-trick of 50MP sensors as the 12 Pro, led by the (f/1.9) main lens, along with the ultrawide and telephoto cameras. Improving on the 12 Pro, the 13 Pro uses a 1in sensor in the main camera, which is not only the largest ever used on a Xiaomi phone, but according to the brand, it’s the largest on the market right now. 

The other big difference here is that all three of these lenses were engineered in partnership with Leica, bringing a slew of new settings including two photography presets – Authentic and Vibrant – as well as greater customisation options, such as 35, 50, 75 and 90mm focal ranges for portrait mode. This lens will also automatically shift focus depending on the distance to your subject, optimising your shots for portrait or close-up macro shots. Serious photographers will also be glad to hear that the Xiaomi 13 Pro can produce 10-bit RAW files, allowing you to easily export them straight into PhotoShop for editing.

The Xiaomi 13 Pro will be available in two colours, Ceramic Black and Ceramic White, and both will be launching alongside the non-Pro variant on 14 March, with a retail price of £1,099. This places The Xiaomi 13 Pro squarely between the Samsung Galaxy S23 and the S23 Ultra – we’ll have to wait for the results of our hands-on tests to see if it can prove to be a viable middle ground between those two juggernauts. Check back in soon for the verdict.

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