Xiaomi and OnePlus are two of the most talked about manufacturers in the Android market today. None of them are largely present in most countries, but it is a fact that we can buy their devices here. Their last two smartphones are among the best Android flagships of the moment, and are affordable. But which one should you buy? Here are our recommendations.

  • OnePlus 6 review: first-class smartphone without too many surprises
  • Mi 8, Mi 8 SE Mi 8 Explorer Edition and MI Band 3 released: Xiaomi ready for a new round

Although the two smartphones are not from the same manufacturer, they have a lot in common. Both devices have notch and a screen-to-body ratio of 83.8%, which means the devices are similar on the front. The notch of the Xiaomi Mi 8 is a little more pronounced, remembering even more the lines of the iPhone X.

The Xiaomi Mi 8 looks a lot like the iPhone X / ©

In addition to the similar size (154.9 x 74.8 x 7.6 mm on the Mi 8 vs. 155.7 x 75.4 x 7.8 mm on the OnePlus 6), the smartphones also feature the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor and 6 GB of RAM (both also have a variant with 8 GB of RAM).

On the memory side, Xiaomi and OnePlus decided to opt for the same strategy as Apple. So forget any slot to expand storage. For both smartphones, you can choose between 64, 128 and 256 GB of internal memory.

Obviously, from a performance point of view, but also battery life, the two are very similar. In both cases, the phones are smooth and fast. You won’t have any worries about games or multitasking. In all, there are two excellent smartphones and the differences are in the details, but also in your preferences.

The notch on the OnePlus 6 is a little smaller/©

OnePlus 6 vs. Xiaomi Mi 8 – Technical Specifications

  OnePlus 6 Xiaomi Mi 8
Dimensions: 155.7 x 75.4 x 7.75 mm 154.9 x 74.8 x 7.6 mm
Weight: 177 g 175 g
Battery size: 3300 mAh 3400 mAh
Screen size: 6.28 inches 6.21 inches
Screen technology: AMOLED AMOLED
Screen: 2280 x 1080 pixels (402 ppi) 2248 x 1080 pixels (402 ppi)
Front camera 16 megapixels 20 megapixels
Rear camera 16 megapixels 12 megapixels
Flash: Dual-LED Dual-LED
Android version: 8.1 – Oreo 8.1 – Oreo
Interface: Oxygen OS MIUI
8 GB
6 GB
Internal memory: 64 GB
128 GB
256 GB
64 GB
128 GB
256 GB
Removable memory: Unavailable Unavailable
Chipset: Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
Number of cores: 8 8
Max speed. 2.8 GHz 2.8 GHz
Connectivity HSPA, LTE, NFC, Dual-SIM, Bluetooth 5.0 HSPA, LTE, NFC, Dual-SIM, Bluetooth 5.0

You should choose OnePlus 6 if…

You want to have customer service

For both you have to go through the possible import problems (no guarantee, no customer service, expensive and slow transportation, customs fees, etc…), because neither is officially established in Brazil. However, you should find better service with OnePlus as it updates more of its products, including older ones.

  • The pros and cons of importing products from China

You want an interface close to the purest Android

Two schools face off in our duel. On the one hand, OxygenOS 5.1.9 is based on Android 8.1 Oreo and is relatively “pure” in the sense of Google. On the other hand, Xiaomi’s MIUI customization, which is also based on Android Oreo, is closer to iOS aesthetically.

The OnePlus 6 obviously has Android Oreo/©

OxygenOS will please Android fans. The menus are relatively similar (despite some small differences), and we can already find the influence of Android P. Gesture navigation is also possible (Xiaomi also offers). A drag up will take you to the home screen.

A drag up on the left or right side of the bottom edge acts as a return key. To access multitasking mode, simply swipe from the bottom up and hold. Also, there is no bloatware.

You want a red smartphone

If you like originality (and the red color), the latest version of OnePlus 6 will delight you. Available at launch only in Midnight Black, Mirror Black and Silk White, The OnePlus 6 is now available in red. According to Pete Lau, one of the founders of the brand, the red color was obtained using an original lamination technique for “a more elegant red, which leaves a strong impression of quality and value”.

You want a wired headset

The OnePlus 6 may be a flagship, but it’s one of the few that still offer the p2 connection to headphone. The OnePlus smartphone has not given in to the temptation to be completely wireless, despite the release of Bullets Wireless headphones, which are always a convenient option to own.

  • In 2018, Xiaomi wants to consolidate in China and win the world (again)

You should choose the Xiaomi Mi 8 if…

Your budget is lower

The question of budget is always paramount when you decide between two models. In the absence of an official price list, the Xiaomi Mi 8 is generally cheaper to buy than the OnePlus 6, even if the two are imported. Chinese buying sites regularly offer good prices. Compared to OnePlus 6, you can save over two hundred reais (however, with some discounts they can have very similar prices).

Photo quality is your priority

Although both smartphones are relatively good at photography, my preference still turns to xiaomi’s smartphone. Of course the differences are not obvious, but the dual camera of the Mi 8 (12 MP (f/1.8) + 12 MP (f/2.4)) works best. Exposure is accurate, the colors are rich and vivid, the white balance is excellent and the noise in the photos taken in low light is quite limited. Special mention: the bokeh effect is very successful.

The OnePlus 6 and Xiaomi Mi 8 feature glass in the rear / ©

In terms of result, the image quality proposed by Xiaomi Mi 8 is therefore slightly higher, thing you can see in the photos we took with both cameras in these galleries:

  • OnePlus 6 photo gallery
  • Xiaomi Mi 8 Photo Gallery

You want to be different

To be quite different, you can bet on the Explorer Edition version, whose rear features a look of internal components. The Mi 8 is a fairly successful attempt by the Chinese manufacturer, able to compete with all high-end smartphones. The smartphone is full of qualities: an attractive design, an AMOLED display and a compact shape. Finally, its biggest flaw is that it is not marketed in the rest of the world.

The Xiaomi Mi 8 has a unique interface for an Android smartphone / ©

Clearly, we are dealing with two very special Chinese flagship smartphones. Both units are well designed and have excellent build quality, and offer excellent specifications.

With the OnePlus flagship, I don’t feel like I have to sacrifice anything, and that’s an important feeling when you spend several hundred dollars on a smartphone. Your ultra-fast Dash charge is also an important argument in your favor.

  • Why are Chinese smartphones so cheap?
  • See why you’ll end up having a Chinese smartphone – and without regretting

Which one would you choose?

Cell phones
Xiaomi Mi 8
OnePlus 6