Xiaomi Mi 9T launches in Malaysia, with ‘kind of crazy’ early bird Lazada promo

  • Launch demonstrates philosophy of bringing innovation at honest prices
  • Malaysia first SEA country to receive the Mi 9T, proves one of most loyal markets

The pop-up camera comes complete with sound and lighting effects.

Some fans may remember that Malaysia was one of the first global markets for Xiaomi which set up a sales and marketing presence here in 2014. Since then Malaysian consumers and Xiaomi have formed a close relationship with the country remaining as an important market for the Chinese smartphone brand.

Testament to the importance Xiaomi places on Malaysia, it made the country the first in Southeast Asia to receive its Xiaomi Mi9T model – wanting its fans here to be the first to experience the Mi 9T in the region.

Not only that, but to express appreciation to its fans, it has launched an early bird promotion (more on this later) that sees it selling the device at below cost.

“In a way, it’s kind of crazy,” admits Xiaomi country manager of Malaysia and Singapore Allen An, speaking to Digital News Asia after the launch. “But we are willing to try this, because – we believe – this is how we can earn the hearts of Xiaomi fans. In the [near] future, this is how we will remain a formidable competitor in the smartphone market here.”

The Xiaomi Mi 9T – the middle child of the Mi 9 family, follows in the footsteps of the Xiaomi Mi 9 – the flagship device from the Chinese company – which was launched in Malaysia in April.

Sitting squarely in between the higher-end Mi 9 and the smaller-screened Mi 9 SE, the Mi 9T is a triple-rear-camera smartphone sporting a full screen display (no notches, teardrops or punch-hole cameras!) and runs on a Qualcomm Snapdragon 730 processor. It prices from RM1,199 (US$287).

“We can say with confidence that Mi 9T has set a new benchmark for smartphones in its price range. Mi 9T addition to the Mi 9 series brings key features such as a massive 4000mAh battery, true full screen display and the best-in-class Qualcomm Snapdragon 730 mobile platform. We are demonstrating our philosophy of bringing innovation to every Malaysian consumer at honest prices,” says An, adding, “We are always thankful for the great support we have been getting from Malaysian Mi fans and customers.”


Full to the brim

The most immediately distinctive aspect of the Mi 9T is its full screen display. Its 6.93-inch AMOLED screen is spread out across the smartphone’s face with nary a notch in sight.

This is achieved by fitting everything into its mightily thin bezel and having a pop-up front-facing camera, which pokes itself out of the top of the device when you activate it (complete with sound and lighting effects).

The screen has low-blue-light eye protection certification by Germany’s VDE Testing and Certification Institute, on account of its 256-scale eye protection technology and low-brightness colour grayscale optimisation. Through features dubbed Reading and Sunlight Mode 2.0, the Mi 9T can accurately adjust screen brightness to fit the ambience.

It features a four-sided curved glass black that is applied with nano-holographic technology to achieve a flame design. The fingerprint scanner is an in-screen one, which An says combines both hardware and software to significantly improve fingerprint recognition rate and speed.

The back gives off a cool flame-like effect.

The whole picture

The pop-up front-facing camera is a 20MP shooter that is protected with a sapphire glass cover. Selfie fans can take advantage of its selfie-panorama feature, which lets you pan the camera like you would for a panorama picture to get a wider group selfie.

The crown jewel of its optics, of course, are the three rear cameras. The Mi 9T sports a main 48MP camera with a ½-inch Sony IMX 582 sensor. It does that thing where, for night portraits, the camera’s sensor can merge four pixels to form large 1.6μm pixels in order retain more details in low-light conditions.

The Mi 9T also sports a 13MP ultra wide-angle lens (with a 124.8-degrees field of view) and an 8MP telephoto lens. An notes that tweaks to the camera’s user interface allow users to activate each camera by pinching the screen to zoom and unzoom.


Powerful innards

As for its insides, the Mi 9T houses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 730 mobile platform, which has been noted to feature an increase of 35% in CPU and 10% in GPU performances compared to its predecessor, the Snapdragon 710.

For gamers, the Mi 9T is equipped with Game Turbo 2.0, which features the optimisation of touch response, display, sound quality, network and in-game calls to provide for a smooth gameplay experience. Touch response rate here goes up to 180Hz, with click and touch response times reduced to about 70 milliseconds. It might not matter for casual users, but might be the winning touch for dedicated mobile gamers.

Rounding up the Mi 9T’s features are its 4,000mAh battery and 18W charging. It doesn’t feature the Mi 9’s 20W wireless charging, though its battery capacity is much higher than the Mi 9’s 3,300mAh battery. For those who care for it, the Mi 9T also offers multi-function NFC. There’s also a 3.5mm headphone jack here, which is always wondrous.

The Mi 9T will be available in two versions: a 6GB + 64GB one retailing for RM1,199 and available starting from June 25 2019; and a 6GB + 128GB version pricing at RM1,399 (US$335), available from June 29 onwards.

The early bird special mentioned earlier is an exclusive online deal running now, where customers who pre-book the Mi 9T on Lazada from June 20 to 24 are entitled to purchase the 6GB + 64GB version for RM1,099 (US$263) as part of an early bird offer. This special is the continuation of Xiaomi and Lazada’s fruitful partnership.

During the portal’s recent 7th birthday sale, Xiaomi was the best-selling phone brand. Additionally, the Redmi Note 7 smartphone, launched earlier this year, was the best-selling smartphone on Lazada during the first and second quarter.

Related stories:

The more compact Xiaomi Mi 9 SE arrives in Malaysia

Xiaomi launches mid-range flagship amidst challenges

Review: Redmi Note 7, budget personified amidst challenges 

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