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xiaomi 14 ultra better than samsung. This is xiaomI’s brand new 14 ultra and after almost 14 years of xiaomi phones having the same old mui software. This is where they reinvent themselves.

The phone spec sheet is absolutely jacked. It’s got new ai features, some of them genuinely mindblowing. It’s got their nextgen, hyper os operating system and it’s arguably also the most decked out camera system on the planet. So in the 2024 smartphone market, how does xiaomI’s best compare to samsung’s best the phone that I’ve been using every day since launch the galaxy s 24 ultra? Well.

For starters, the unboxing experience is just leagues ahead for three reasons, so we got an insert on top, which has the sim ejector tool but, more importantly, one a frosted plastic hard. Shell case. It’s nothing fancy, but it’s functional. Assuming that you’re going to buy a decent quality case for your phone online anyways, then it’s a $ 20 saving and, ironically, better for the environment.

You got the phone obviously, and a cable like every phone comes with, but this also has number two a 90 w charging. That’s two times the maximum power that samsung is able to charge with, and the final thing is well when you peel the phone. You will also notice a preinstalled screen protector which, as with the chargers samsung, does not come with, I mean don’t get me wrong, screen protectors, extremely cheap, but the main benefit from it being preinstalled. Is that, let’s be honest, the company are going to do a better job than we are and we’re not actually done yet.

There’s a whole separate photography kit, which is this pretty indul package, containing a nicer looking textured case. This one is leather, with a specific coating that highly resists bacteria and dirt. It’s got a mount that allows you to attach physical filters, and that also looks like a slot for a lanyard.

It’s all a bit excessive for most people, but I can’t deny it’s cool. Like these two are just decorative camera rings to style your weird phone camera hybrid, as you please, and then this is a grip for that case, which plugs into your usbc port. To give you proper hardware, camera controls, as well as three very cool features which will get to and then oh there’s the lanyard, but even putting all this photography kit stuff aside cuz, it is a separate purchase. Just the core package contents of the xiaomi do wipe the floor with what the samsung comes with.

So that’s one point to no points, but then, as soon as I picked the xiaomi up, I i started laughing. Don’t get me wrong. There is absolutely merit to xiaomI’s design.

I really like these leatherlike finishes. It feels clean and grippy and hasslefree, and also having a central, symmetrical camera is nice and practical for using the thing on a flat surface. However, these cameras have become so big, so deep and so weighty that it feels like they’ve started to invade the core phone experience to the point where most of the people I’ve handed this to it’s the first thing they notice and they are completely put off by It especially compared to the samsung, which is so great for brighthued, almost any position and still avoid the cameras to quote joseph in my team here.

It feels like you’re holding holding a piece of tech stuck onto a piece of tech, and, while I can tolerate it, you know I’m always someone who wants to make sure I’m using the best tech. There is, and I’m willing to be a little bit uncomfortable to do so. This right here is my issue. This phone is so topheavy.

I genuinely feel like I’m having to exert extra grip strength just to keep it in my hands. You feel the urge every single time you pick it up to hold it higher up than usual to balance out that weight distribution. But you can’t do that because the camera protrude so much and takes up half the phone, and so you just end up with this continuous sense of dredge, knowing that at any time one wrong hand over and it’s a vista.

It gets in the way of wireless charging. The camera lifts the phone up so high that in quite a few situations it no longer makes proper contact with the charger or the phone that you’re trying to charge with it. If you’re reverse wireless charging, I really needed this thing last week to save my dying samsung. While I was out traveling and about an hour into delicately fiddling with these two phones trying to perfectly match the coils to actually get charge from here to here, while avoiding this massive camera module the size of the moon.

I just wanted to chop the thing off. Also this bezel on the back. I hate it clearly, this whole thin on the top thick on the sides.

Thing is a purposeful decision that xia’s made, but I just don’t understand why cuz to me, it just looks like they took this leather strip and misapplied it. So pretty clear point for samsung with the build and the usability which makes it 1 one so far, but then you turn the phones over and you’ll see that xiaomI’s done something pretty unique with the screen. A long running complaint that I’ve had with their past phones is they’ve, always had this thicker bottom bezel, and these weird bunny rabbit looking corners, but in one phone they have fixed both of those things and taken it further.

They’re calling this an allaround liquid display, which is indicative of well a how companies are running out of ways to describe glass and pixels but b, how the panel kind of melts into the edges and the corners equally in all directions. It’s subtle, but I think it’s a really aesthetic effect. It’s kind of like how, 10 years ago we used to sketch out what we’d imagine our future phones would look like, and it’s definitely cooler than samsung’s flat display it’s more unique and it’s more interesting, but that doesn’t make it better. Both are top of their game.

In most aspects, bright, a high refresh rate that can fully adapt on the fly and ultra high resolution, but I would actually side slightly with samsung for this one, because for gestures, you have to use the very edges of the screen and that ends up being on The curve for xiaomi, so it doesn’t register quite as reliably two that even though samsung’s max brightness is technically rated lower in all the lighting conditions, I’ve tested it in it seems to be brighter. Brightness is a weird stat these days and then what seals it for me is this antireflective coating that samy slipped onto the s24 ultra. It is so good that you almost forget about the surrounding light, and that makes your screen experience way more legible, as if you had even higher brightness, but without the extra battery drain.

That comes with that which leads us to a score of 1 2 now. But we all know that more and more every single year, the battle for the best smartphone, it’s a software battle way more than it is a hardware battle. So let’s talk about that and because it’s such a massive category now we’re splitting it into three user interface.

Software support and ai okay, you might remember xiaomI’s mii. It’s the software skin they’ve had on every phone ever since the company first started, but I’m guessing that since mI’s reputation was always fairly mid and potentially holding their hero, flagship phones back. They finally decided that it’s time for a redo, a new skin called hyper os with a ton of new features, new animations, greater efficiency and built to work, particularly well with other xiaomi products.

So yeah we’re talking about the first full software remake from a company whose entire foundation was based on its software. Now that sounds awesome, which is why I was slightly underwhelmed when I booted it up for the first time and realized well. That just looks like my last xiaomi phone and that’s okay. I’ve never hated the way that xiaomI’s os looks, but it is also far from my favorite right now.

It very much feels like it’s trying to be ios, but just without the attention to detail or the consistency of ios, and I particularly do not appreciate the builtin adverts cuz, you would almost assume, given that hyper oss is meant to be xiaomI’s, big breakaway from mii And its advert filled reputation that this would be the opposite their way to overcorrect and to make it right, but that does not appear to be the case like the mus have recommend mended apps, that it shows you before you go to xiaomI’s app store, how it Takes just one swipe from your lock screen and you’re in an ad, it calls itself a wallpaper carousel, but really it’s an ad in disguise cuz. As soon as you click on anything, you will be taken to a page with so many popups it genuinely makes you want to throw up even on the home screen. One swipe and you see news, but it’s news in like the worst possible way to consume news with two large banner ads on screen at any point in time, and that’s on top of the fact that you already have the google news feed with which actually does Take you to the sites that you want to go to, oh, but the worst is the notifications. Why why on earth does the mi browser need to specifically ping me to tell me I need to see this random article again with about 40 adverts baked in now.

Of course, these are all easy to avoid and you can disable almost all instances of advertising in the phone. So I don’t think it’s a reason to not buy it, but I just don’t like the feeling that, clearly to shia me, I am as well as the customer, I’m also the product that they can sell to their advertisers. Okay, so that was my pretty bleak. First impression of the software, but the more I’ve used it, the better.

It has got it for starters, you realize that hyper os is ultra lightweight, like just, for example, samsung’s os takes up around 17 gb of your data. This is less than 10 and within that there is still a little bit of blow wear, but the good news is, you now have complete control over it. Basically, anything on the phone is uninstallable. The lock screen customization has now opened up, and it not just allows you to in instantly nail one type of look really well, but like a whole, suite of very different aesthetics, with also room to add your own personal touches to them.

It reminds me of the kind of variation that would have previously required you to use third party apps and workarounds, but it’s built in, and that makes it work so much smoother, but it is still lacking on the lock screen. Widgets front they’ve cleaned up the control center when you swipe down just like ios they’ve got rid of all the text. That tells you what each icon is, which means it takes a little bit of getting used to, but once you’re used to it, it feels clean. Now you can fit more icons on screen and instead of swiping between pages you just scroll down now, there’s new animations and the whole thing is really fluid.

I only really clocked this on, like my third full day of using the phone, but it was a sudden moment of realization of wait a sec. Have I had a single bit of lag in my entire experience? No, it feels reliably almost unbreakables and you expect it to stutter a little bit. Nothing or like this is the camera app relative to most camera apps. This is slick.

There’s new gallery features like some very quirky portrait mode effects, probably a little too quirky for me, but they’re, fun, oh and also cutout, which can instantly just chop your background out or swap it for something else. Hyper os also has this dynamic island like feature on top for little things like charging and silent mode, and I actually think it’s done pretty well because of the screen’s ability to portray deep blacks. It genuinely feels like your phone bezel itself, is extending down to create this separate area within your screen.

It’s a convincing illusion, but it is also early days. Something like this is only useful in so much as there are apps that support it and well not many apps support it. So yeah hyper os is a good step in the right direction.

It is better than the mii it’s replacing, but I still prefer using samsung’s 1ui. I think this new version of samsung’s os. It feels like a really good balance of playful, but mature.

I like how you can swipe your notifications away both ways as opposed to xiaomI’s. One way or how you can expand those notifications in all cases, with a little swipe down that feels so intuitive to me, the customization is absolutely absurd. Thanks to samsung’s goodlock suite of apps – and you can do it all without any need to get into the nittygritty of installing custom firmware and the vibrations samsung’s vibration motor is so good that you forget there is a vibration motor. It almost fuses the hardware and the software, so that typing, for example, feels really tactile, and you don’t even immediately know why.

Now that is not quite the case with xiaomi, so I wouldn’t call this a landslide win for samsung. Both phones will absolutely do everything you need them to do and more, but it’s just I think, samsung has improved this generation more than xiaomi has with hyper os, even though xiaomi is supposedly the one who’s had the big rebrand and the whole thing with the ads. In the software, while it isn’t a deal breaker for me, it does leave a bad taste in the mouth, but hey I’ve waited through them for the last 2 weeks to make this video, so a sub to the channel would wow me: okay, here’s the thing with Xiaomi though one of the biggest complaints – that’s often leveled at them, is the software support.

In recent years, samsung has massively revamped theirs. They went from promising 2 years of major android updates to 4 years and now 7 years on this phone, this s24 ultra will get updates until android version 21 and that’s not a cheap thing to do. I was actually talking to someone I know in the phone industry, someone who actually makes the decisions for how many updates their phones get, and they were telling me that they spend an average of a million per major update per model of phone.

They want to get those updates for, and this is where xiaomi does save a bit of cost, there’s a fair few of their flagship phones in the past that they have completely just left high and dry, which was extremely sad. It’s better now they’re offering four full years, which not that long ago, to be fair, would have seemed incredible, but hey I mean the benchmark keeps moving and xiaomi is consistently catching up. So this one goes to samsung too. Let’s talk artificial intelligence with the launch of the s24 ultra, it felt like one of those mic drop.

Ai is here moments. There’s around 10 different ai features, all weaved into various parts of the software and all available on day. One I’d say about: half of them are gimmicks like fun party tricks that are cool to try, but you won’t really use after the first week, and half of them are either already game changers or they have a good chance to become game changers in one way Way, the entirety of hyper os is built around the ability to use ai like there’s this big incoming feature called hypermind, which apparently uses ai to understand your needs and then execute things automatically across all your xiaomi products, but hyperm mind is coming in a few weeks. Apparently, as of right now at this point in time, there aren’t nearly as many discrete ai features on the xiaomi as samsung, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t any I mean for one hidden away in the gallery is an absolutely enormous ai feature called video effects.

You pick a clip and then you just tap and hold on whatever effects you want to apply to that clip and it automatically tracks them to that person. In that footage, there was a time not very long ago at all where this would have to be drawn in by hand, and it would take like a full day just to edit a 30 second video. So the fact that I can now completely without internet literally tap and hold my screen to edit an effect into the video for, however long I want feels like I have just been granted a superpower, and if I was a little better at the robot, this would Look absolutely awesome. I tried okay, it can even use its awareness of where you are to place text behind you, which is a complex effect that, if you’re doing it manually with a traditional video editing program, it takes way longer and requires much more skill than it does here.

On your smartphone, there are some ai features baked into the camera too, but I’ll get to the camera separately. For this ai category, I would say: samsung still takes it just for the sheer breadth of ai features, but the fact that what xiaomi has done they have done so well, it does get me excited for what might be next, oh dear, the scorecard is not looking Very good for xiaomi right now, but how does the performance measure up well? Both phones have the snapdragon 8 gen 3 processor, with samsung’s advantage being that they always get custommade versions just for them that are slightly overclocked and specifically optimized and xiaomI’s perk that this goes up to 16 gb of ram instead of samsung 12. So if we’re talking numbers samsung is a little higher on cpu and a pretty decent amount higher on graphics, xiaomi is going to be able to keep a few more apps suspended without having to force close them.

But I tell you the much starker difference between these two is. The thermals thermals, I would say, are even more important than a bit of extra ram or a chip being made for galaxy, because in theory it only matters if your phone is powerful. If it can be powerful, while staying cool and xiaomi does not seem to be very good at doing that check this out, so this is the wildlife extreme stress test.

It basically puts the phones through 30 minutes of pure pain and in that samsung’s internal temperature goes up to 44°. Xia’s 52° samsung feels way cooler too on the outside, whereas this especially on these metal rails on the sides, it feels like you could cook an egg on there. Here’s the really weird part of it, though I have run four of these tests now and every single time xiaomi, while always getting hotter, also manages to keep its performance higher, there’s way less of a drop off after long strain, which is good. But considering that I can see – and I can absolutely feel that it’s getting hotter is also unusual and maybe not good the way I’m interpreting that result – it’s it’s almost like xiaomi is being less conservative with protecting the chip and the battery in the long term, like Allowing the phone to go full throttle and stay at full throttle, even if potentially reducing its lifespan, so I’ll give performance a draw just because who wins really depends on what you’re prioritizing, but where I think you feel this looser power management more directly is battery everything About xiaomI’s battery experience sounds like it should be better.

I mean both phones have 5000 mah batteries, but xiaomI’s wired charging is 90 w of power versus samsung’s 45 xiaomI’s wireless charging is 80 ws versus samsung’s, 15 and xiaomI’s ability to reverse charge. Other phones is 10. W versus samsung’s, 45 and yet samsung still takes it for me for the simple fact that the lasts longer and not even by an arbitrary amount, it’s a full 10 to 15 % difference. So for the way that I use my phone I charge overnight, and then I want my phone to last all day.

Samsung has enough of the battery life improvement that honestly, none of xiaomI’s, fast charging chops can win this point back. But if there’s one redeeming factor of the 14 ultra one thing that could still make it worth it, even though it’s down bad on number of categories, one, it’s got to be the camera right. I mean the thing is massive: it feels like it weighs more than me, and this is the key area where all of these ai features are focused.

So every single camera on the back here is a 50 megap camera and, more importantly than resolution. The reason that these cameras are so much bigger than these cameras is sensor sizers. These phones have the exact same combination of camera types, but every camera on the xiaomi is bigger than the respective camera on the samsung, and that’s a good thing.

That should mean that providing the software is as good. This will wipe the floor with samy over here. So does it do that? Well, it’s got really good fundamentals like look how smoothly you can transition between your lenses and most impressively with zero color shifting this phone? Really understands your scene and, yes, your photos aren’t 100 % true to life of color because of this leica collaboration that xiaomI’s doing leica definitely has a style, and you definitely notice it appearing in your shots, but I don’t mind it here. What bothers me is when phones get colors wrong because they don’t know.

What’s right, we had something pretty much like this with the oneplus 12, whereas here you have the confidence that the phone gets it, but it’s just choosing a style, and that makes it fun to shoot with the filters and the automatic vignette. That’s applied the huge camera sensors, meaning that, whether you use your main camera, your three time, zoom camera or your five time, zoom camera – you are getting mive natural cinematic background, blur much more than samsung. It makes me feel like such a hipster, and I actually find myself using the camera way more on this phone. Just for the pure thrill of it.

Stylewise xiaomi goes for to smooth images. Meanwhile, samsung goes for vibrant sharpened images. Both are good, but the soft old film style look of xiaomi, combined with its high power optics, is a really cool combo, because it specifically makes photos, look like they were shot on a big proper like a camera and by comparison samsung shots more often than not.

They still feel to me like phone photos, great phone photos but phone photos and what I’m really glad to see is xiaomI’s video performance. The phone is a pretty clear demonstration that they know how to take good video video, that’s detailed, video, that’s color, accurate video! That’s pretty good at keeping noise levels in check now. One thing that I will hand to samsung is that their focusing is better than xia’s and that’s really starting to matter when you’ve got big sensors, which will blur anything that isn’t immediately in focus, but the xiaomi 14 ultra’s camera is just too cool to not give The point to them like it’s, got four microphones instead of three, which gives it one more channel to both pick up better audio and also remove background noise.

It’s got a variable aperture, so you can manually restrict light intake. This camera grip for a certain kind of user is the best for three reasons: one it’s also a battery. It gives the phone an extra 1500 mah hours of juice, taking the phone’s total capacity with it to an eye watering 65k milliamp hours. It funnily enough, actually improves the phone’s weight distribution and makes it more ergonomic, and then three is the accompanying software.

This is not just a slapon accessory they’ve, clearly thought about the different things, things that you might want to use it for. The final addition, then, is the ai, and it’s mostly used in the background on xiaomi. You don’t really see it, except when you zoom in as soon as you get beyond 30 times magnification.

You know when most phones start to look like potato cameras. That’s where you see this little red icon come up. You see that, and you know that you’re about to see magic, because after capturing that photo, your phone isn’t just going to do what it can with what it has it’s using extremely powerful ai ai, sophisticated enough that you can take photo. Is it even something stupid? Like 120 time zoom and the phone turns it into a legible result, this blew me away and when it works, it is by far the most detailed zoom camera I’ve ever used, but yeah.

I do have to caveat it because the ai upscaling it doesn’t always activate it, raises questions like given that detail here isn’t being extracted, it’s actually being invented. Is that even photography, and also it can make some photos? Look a bit weird like in the process of inventing that detail. You’ll find yourself with shots that a decent amount of the time.

Don’t quite have the texture that you know they should. There is also a movie mode on xiaomi, which is great cuz. The core video quality is so high and this mode specifically it nails the fundamentals of cinema, but who shoots a movie in 1920x 800 resolution. Let’s probably talk again when it can do 4k, like the other phones can.

Overall, though I would say, cameras are a win for sham, which leaves us with a score of 3 seven. Obviously, not all categories are going to matter the same amount. So the reason we’ve done this graphic is so that it’s an easy way for you to decide.

What’s important to you and prioritize that but yeah, I do think that in the battle for the 2024 flagship, samsung is ahead. Unless you really want the xiaomi camera experience and you’re happy to sacrifice to get it. “

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