Xiaomi’s flagship phones – the Xiaomi 12 and Xiaomi 12 Pro - are likely headed for a global release. Rumors suggest the flagship duo will launch on March 15, after their Chinese debut in December, and new reports suggest they'll be surprisingly expensive.
This comes from Pricebaba (opens in new tab), which provides the pricing of the base variant of the Xiaomi 12 and 12 Pro - by that we mean, the lowest RAM and storage configuration, which is apparently 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage for the standard model, and 8GB / 256GB for the Pro.
According to the site, the Xiaomi 12's price will start at €899 (roughly $990, £740, AU$1,340), while the 12 Pro will begin at €1,099 (around $1,210, £910, AU$1,640).
Those are prices that roughly match the Galaxy S22 and S22 Plus respectively (depending on conversions, of course) which is a surprise, as we thought the Xiaomi 12 Pro would cost the same as the standard S22, which would leave the 'base' Xiaomi 12 as a more affordable alternative.
So the phones seemingly cost more than we expected, and while rumors suggested that a Lite variant might also accompany the duo, we haven't heard any pricing for that version.
Those are just the starting prices too - reports have hinted that the Xiaomi 12 might come with 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of internal storage, while the 12 Pro might come in 8GB/256GB and 12GB/256GB combinations.
An earlier report had hinted that the Xiaomi 12X, which debuted with the two premium siblings in China, might land globally as well. The report said that the 12X might arrive with 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage, and could be priced a touch cheaper.
Analysis: no more just the affordable phone brand
Though the prices aren’t yet official, looking at Xiaomi’s gradual movement towards the premium category, especially after the departure of Huawei from the smartphone 'big leagues', there is little doubt that the company wants to pitch these devices as 'real' flagship phones.
Since Xiaomi has been among the top three brands globally for a good chunk of the last couple of years, the company probably wants to take on the Samsung Galaxy S series on the Android side of the world.
The Xiaomi 12 and Xiaomi 12 Pro, equipped with a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset at their core, flagship-class displays and top-end camera setups, seem to be the perfect pair of devices to help Xiaomi realize its ambitious dreams.
While Xiaomi, with its new brand identity, tries to carve out space in the top tier, its sub-brands like Redmi and Poco will continue to focus on the affordable Android segment, leaving Xiaomi with every base covered.