Xiaomi has rarely talked about the actual Android OS whenever introducing a new version of its forked version of Android, the MIUI. It does seem logical at times because the number of features you see in here are not seen on stock Android.
The latest version of MIUI is the MIUI 8, which was introduced today alongside the Xiaomi Mi Max phablet, which comes with a large 6.44-inch display and variants having up to 4GB RAM and 128GB storage. But what’s interesting in it, is still the MIUI 8 that will be first seen in the Mi Max.
If you take a look at the changelog, there is a lot introduced. But, here is a shortened list that talks about the best ones that might matter to the users out there.
SMS fraud prevention
Fraudsters would set up pseudo base stations to send fraudulent SMSes and sometimes send you links to phishing sites, which you might also open without a knowledge of that being problematic for your data.
MIUI 8 has additional security with a triple protection against SMS fraud, where it identifies such messages, warns against opening any phishing site via SMS, and then the browser too warning about the website’s suspicious activity.
This feature, i.e. a suspend button is seen on some other UIs already, and it indeed is quite helpful. It comes with shortcuts for some important functions, and allows the user to lock the screen from there, which is useful for large screens where reaching the other end and pressing the power button is not always easy.
Dual System for different users
Just like how guest accounts work on PCs, the Dual system allows the user to give a different interface and restricted app access with a different password set for them. It helps both, in privacy and security.
To take it further, even when the phone is connected to the computer, the files that were restricted in the mode will not be accessible.
Tap switch to Multitask
The new multitask management allows users not just to switch between the apps that is commonly done, but a switching where you can quickly switch between two apps to copy and paste stuff, and these could be your favorite apps.
Long screen capture
The long screen capture introduced in the MIUI 8 is a great feature. It does not just capture a screenshot of the entire long page if you are browsing and wanted to share more than what is just visible on the screen, but it also allows you to crop there directly by showing a preview in the background so you can cut the screenshot precisely.
Image editing features
There was already an image editor seen in the MIUI 7. Now, the new version of MIUI comes with better features, including filters, image tilt, and crop, professional adjustment of contrast, vignette, brightness, hue, etc., adding of graffiti, mosaics, and the addition of stickers is possible as well.
If you are wondering about Instagram having some of these features, you are compromising with the image resolution to begin with, but here, the editor doesn’t change the resolution unless you decide to crop the picture.
Video editing features
The new interface brings an option to edit videos directly from the Album, and there are options to crop, add filters, add captions and even add your favorite music. These features are quite enough for the basic video editing, which usually would have needed a third party app for anything to be done.
New features in Calculator App
The calculator isn’t just for the number calculations now, since Xiaomi has included new features such as currency and unit conversion, and even calculation of mortgage, tax, and provident fund.
Powerful scanning options
The camera does not just take pictures, but thanks to the software tweaks, the camera can be used for scanning a lot of things and getting the right information out of it.
Barcode scanning has become a common use of cameras, and that is included here too
Capture a picture of an object and you can find results in stores if you wanted to purchase something similar
Capture a text and translate that to any other language
Scan business cards and store information directly as a contact and this has a support for 21 languages, including English, Chinese, Japanese, and French
Document sweep – Scan on any document and you will see it with a white background, just like how Camscanner does it
Text editing and selection options
Now, on the MIUI 8, once you select any text, options are not limited to cutting or copying or deleting them. The text can be translated live to any other language and you can set a common language for the translation.
The intelligent recognizer would check and recognize any phone number or web address and give you options to directly tap and reach the website or dial the number.
There are several other important features brought in by Xiaomi in the MIUI 8, including the power saving and intelligent background app management, but the ones that I listed above are the ones that I felt to be something very interesting and useful for the users in the daily usage.
Check out the list of phones getting MIUI 8 update.