A few days ago, Chinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi has officially unveiled the Global Stable version of MIUI 9 at an event held in New Delhi, India. They also launched a new series of budget devices named Xiaomi Redmi Y1 and Redmi Y1 Lite at the same event. Follow the link below to know more.
MIUI is Xiaomi’s take on Android and it comes with a ton of features that even stock Android doesn’t have. MIUI 9 is the latest version which was announced back in July and since then Xiaomi has been beta testing it on various devices. Finally, they have started rolling out the stable OTAs.
Devices to receive MIUI 9 update
If you’ve been wondering whether you’ll get to taste the latest flavour of MIUI, here is the list of devices which are going to receive the MIUI 9 update – Mi MIX 2, Mi Note 3, Mi 6 , Mi Max 2, Redmi Note 4, Redmi Note 4X, Redmi Note 5A, Redmi 4, Redmi 4X, Redmi Y1, Redmi Y1 Lite, Mi MIX, Mi Note 2, Mi 5, Mi 5s, Mi 5s Plus, Mi Max, Mi Max Prime, Redmi Note 3, Redmi 3, Redmi 3S, Redmi 3S Prime, Redmi 4, Redmi 4A, Mi Note, Mi 4i, Redmi 2, Redmi 2 Prime, Redmi Note 4G Prime, Redmi Note 2, Mi 4 and Redmi Note 4G.
Xiaomi mentioned that it will be a steady rollout so you may have to wait 1 or 2 months depending on how old your device is. Redmi Note 4 and Mi Max 2 has already started receiving OTAs, if you haven’t got a notification to download updates, you can go to the “Updater” app and manually refresh to check whether it’s available or not.
MIUI 9 Features
You shouldn’t necessarily expect an Android version upgrade along with the MIUI 9 update as Xiaomi doesn’t care much about the version of Android their devices are running, but MIUI 9 itself brings a ton of new features.
From an aesthetic point of view, MIUI 9 has updated app icons along with new system-wide animations as well as animations for the built-in app icons like dialer, messages, camera, etc. They don’t have to do much with the performance but makes the device appear much snappier and it does look cool too. If you are not the fan of stock MIUI look, you are always free to choose from a plethora of themes available online.
Finally, Xiaomi has brought Android Nougat features like the Quick switch and Split-screen to MIUI. Even though many devices were running MIUI 8 on top of Android Nougat, these features were surprisingly missing. Split-screen and Quick switch are really nice additions especially for serious multitaskers out there.
The MIUI 9 is considerably faster than previous versions, thanks to the new under-the-hood optimizations including dynamic resource allocation, critical background acceleration, better memory management, core congestion control and more. Xiaomi, at the event also mentioned that the app launching times and latency on MIUI 9 are on par with stock Android, despite being a heavy UI by itself. MIUI 9 is also promised to be consistently smooth even after prolonged usage period.
The lock screen has also been revamped slightly. Now, swiping to the left opens a page where you can control Mi Home appliances, as well as the flashlight and swipe to the right, brings up the camera app.
The new Notification shade on MIUI 9 presents information in a more concise and comprehensive way. It groups all notifications on a per-app basis to reduce clutter. Also, they have enabled Quick reply feature, by which you can reply to a message right from the notification shade without opening the app. Quick replies are not at all a new feature, but it’s better bringing it late than never.
Xiaomi has also brought some serious upgrades to stock applications like the Image editor, Mi Video, and Mi Drop. The new image editor comes with AI-based Intelligent background erase feature using which you can remove unwanted lines and objects from your photos. It features the latest version of Beautify and also let you choose from a 12 pack sticker set, which contains a ton of stickers. Mi Drop – Xiaomi’s file transfer utility, allows the seamless transfer of all types of files between devices even without an internet connection. There is an option to resume interrupted transfers and it also supports all Android devices (Even non-Xiaomi ones) running Android 4.4 and above. Mi Video is the native video player from Xiaomi. It comes packed with all the features of a modern video player including support for a wide range of video formats, multilingual subtitles, gestures for seeking forward/backward, take a screenshot while playback and even a private folder for hiding videos.
Xiaomi allows a wide range of home screen customizations ranging from moving apps across pages and customizing transitions to multiple uninstall of apps. Another noticeable change is the App Vault feature which occupies leftmost page on the home screen. App Vault allows you to access core features of favorite apps on a single click, for example, you can place a shortcut to open the QR scanner of PayTM app so that you don’t have to open the PayTM app every time you want to pay someone, just click on the shortcut and it opens up the scanner directly. App Vault also provides shortcuts for frequently opened apps, notes, calculator, sports updates, calendar events and much more.
Well, this is not a complete list of new features on MIUI 9, but the most prominent ones which I noticed right away. MIUI 9 comes with numerous subtle changes which are intended to deliver a better user experience. Let me know in the comments if I missed any feature and also tell us your favorite new feature in MIUI 9.
How to Install?
As mentioned earlier, the MIUI 9 update is going to be steadily rolled out; so some of you might have to wait a little longer to receive it (depending on how old your device is). You will receive a notification once the update becomes available for your device. You can also manually go to the Updater app and click on the “Check for Updates” button to know whether MIUI 9 has arrived for your device or not.
If you are not patient enough to wait until Xiaomi rolls out the OTA update, you can navigate to MIUI Forums and search for the Global Stable variant of MIUI 9 for your device.
HERE IS A QUICK DISCLAIMER: When you search and choose the file, make sure that it is the file for your exact model. If you flash a wrong file, you may end up bricking your device. So be extremely careful while choosing the .zip package, as there is a lot of confusion regarding the naming scheme of Xiaomi devices. For example, the Redmi Note 4 has two variants: a MediaTek variant sold exclusively in China (named as Redmi Note 4) and a Snapdragon variant (named as Redmi Note 4X) sold on other parts of the world. Select your package with at most care and if you are not familiar with these kinds of processes, I would HIGHLY recommend you to wait for the OTA update to arrive.
If the Stable version is available for your device, download the .zip file. After that, open the Updater app, and click on the three dots menu on the upper right-hand corner. Now choose the “Choose Update Package” option, navigate to the .zip file you downloaded earlier and press “OK”. Now the device will automatically start verifying the file and later you get a prompt in which you can choose the “Update and Reboot” option. Then you have to wait until the device updates itself and reboots into the MIUI 9.
Watch this video for more information.
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