Huawei Mate Xs 2 vs Xiaomi MIX Fold 2: Which one?

There are quite a few folding phones available in the market as we speak. Not all of them are available globally, though, even though more and more of them are coming to countries all around the world. In this article, we’ll compare two immensely interesting foldable smartphones, the Huawei Mate Xs 2 vs Xiaomi MIX Fold 2. Why are these two phones so interesting? Well, these phones actually feel like regular phones when you hold them, while they’re folded.

That sounds impossible? Well, it’s very much possible, mainly due to their thickness. They’re both less than 12mm thick, compared to 15-16mm of the Galaxy Z Fold 4, for example. The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 is not currently available outside of China, while the Mate Xs 2 is in some countries, but it comes without Google services. All in all, we have a lot to talk about here, so if you’re interested, read on.

Specs

  Huawei Mate Xs 2 Xiaomi MIX Fold 2
Screen size Main: 7.08-inch QHD+ Foldable OLED display (foldable, 120Hz)
Secondary (Cover): 6.5-inch fullHD+ OLED display (flat, 120Hz)
Main: 8.02-inch fullHD+ Foldable LTPO2 OLED display (foldable, 120Hz)
Secondary (Cover): 6.56-inch FullHD+ AMOLED display (flat, 120Hz)
Screen resolution Main: 2480 x 2200
Secondary (Cover): 2480 x 1176
Main: 2160 x 1914
Secondary (Cover): 2520 x 1080
SoC Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1
RAM 8GB (LPDDR5) 12GB (LPDDR5)
Storage 512GB; expandable (up to 256GB) 256GB/512GB/1TB; non-expandable
Rear cameras 50MP (f/1.8 aperture, Laser AF, PDAF)
8MP (f/2.4 aperture, OIS, PDAF, 3x optical zoom)
13MP (f/2.2 aperture, 120-degree FoV)
50MP (f/1.8 aperture, 1.0um pixel size, OIS, PDAF)
8MP (telephoto, f/2.6 aperture, 45mm lens, Dual Pixel PDAF, 2x optical zoom)
13MP (f/2.4 aperture, 15mm, 123-degree ultrawide, 1.12um pixel size)
Front cameras 10.7MP (f/2.2 aperture) Cover display: 20MP (27mm lens, 0.8um pixel size.
Battery 4,600mAh, non-removable, 66W wired charging, reverse wired charging 4,500mAh, non-removable, 67W wired charging
Dimensions Unfolded: 156.5 x 139.9 x 5.4mm
Folded: 156.5 x 75.5 x 11.1mm
Unfolded: 161.1 x 144.7 x 5.4mm
Folded: 161.1 x 73.9 x 11.2mm
Weight 255 grams 262 grams
Connectivity 4G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.2, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C 5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.2, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C
Security Side-facing fingerprint scanner Side-facing fingerprint scanner
OS Android 11
EMUI 12
Android 12
MIUI Fold 13
Price €1,999 $1,335
Buy Huawei China only

Design

These two phones both have a vertical hinge, and they fold horizontally. The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 folds like a book, while the Huawei Mate Xs 2 goes the other way. Yes, Huawei opted for a completely different approach here, where part of the display is on the back when the phone is folded. That may sound odd, but it works surprisingly well for this phone, as we were able to find out during our review period.

The fact it has only one display enabled Huawei to make this phone so thin (11.1mm when folded, 5.4mm when unfolded). Xiaomi managed to almost match that with the MIX Fold 2, which is astonishing considering there are two displays on that phone. The device is 11.2mm thick when folded, and 5.4mm when unfolded). Both phones come with a frame made out of metal. Huawei’s foldable feels even more like a regular phone when folded, due to its curved, but the Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 is not far behind. Both are excellent choices in that regard, for people who hate the fact larger foldable phones are so thick.

Now, these two phones also look quite different, especially when unfolded. Huawei has a protruding strip on the back, when unfolded, next to which part of the display is docked. That strip contains various sensors, cameras, and so on. It is basically flat with the phone’s display when folded. When unfolded, it gives you something to grab onto, which is great. The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 has an entirely different camera design, it has a camera island across the top of its back side. It feels more like the Galaxy Z Fold 4 when unfolded. It also doesn’t have a camera on its main display at all, unlike the Huawei Mate Xs 2.

The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 will give you that satisfying click when you fold it, thanks to its magnets. The Huawei Mate Xs 2, not so much. It requires a bit of force to unfold and fold, and you’ll need to press a button when you want to unfold it. It’s a different experience, but some of you may prefer it. The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 is a bit heavier, and a bit taller, and wider when unfolded. Interestingly enough, it’s narrower when folded. Another thing to note is that neither of the two devices is IP rated for water resistance.

Huawei Mate Xs 2 vs Xiaomi MIX Fold 2: Display

The Huawei Mate Xs 2 and Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 have considerably different display setups. Well, that’s obvious, as the Mate Xs 2 has one, and the MIX Fold 2 two displays. The Huawei Mate Xs 2 includes a 7.8-inch 2480 x 2200 Foldable OLED panel. That is a 120Hz display, which can show up to 1 billion colors. When folded, it becomes a 6.5-inch display with a resolution of 2480 x 1176 pixels.

The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 includes an 8.02-inch 2160 x 1914 Foldable LTPO2 OLED main display. It can project up to 1 billion colors, and this is a 120Hz panel. It supports HDR10+ content, and it also has Dolby Vision support. This display gets up to 1,000 nits of peak brightness in manual mode, and up to 1,300 nits under the auto display brightness setting. The second display on the phone measures 6.56 inches, and it’s a 2520 x 1080 AMOLED panel. It offers a 120Hz refresh rate, supports HDR10+ content, and Dolby vision. The peak brightness is the same as on the main panel. This panel is protected by the Gorilla Glass Victus, while the main one comes with Schott’s UTG glass.

So, are these three panels any good? Not only are they good, they are excellent. In fact, you can’t really go wrong with either one when it comes to image quality, fluidity, and touch sensitivity. All three of them offer truly vivid colors, both are bright enough (Xiaomi’s does get a bit brighter, though), and have excellent touch sensitivity. The viewing angles are also really good on all of them. Blacks are deep, and so on. There’s really not much to complain about when it comes to displays, so we’ll just say that they are excellent. If you really need to have HDR10+ support, then you really have only one option, but chances are not many people will care all that much.

Huawei Mate Xs 2 vs Xiaomi MIX Fold 2: Performance

These two phones have different SoCs, but both are very powerful and the performance is excellent on both. The Huawei Mate Xs 2 comes with the Snapdragon 888 4G, mainly due to the US ban. It offers up to 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM. The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2, on the other hand, features the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 SoC. That is Qualcomm’s latest and greatest chip, and a generation and a half newer than the Snapdragon 888.

As I said earlier, though, both of these chips are immensely powerful. You can get truly great performance with both, and that includes gaming as well. Both phones are well optimized for performance, and that is not surprising at all. Considering how much you’re paying, that’s what you’d expect. Once again, though, the Huawei Mate Xs 2 does not include Google services / apps, so keep that in mind.

The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2, on the flip side, is not available in global markets at the time of writing this article. It is limited to China, which means it comes with software optimized for China on board. You can sideload Google services, though.

Huawei Mate Xs 2 vs Xiaomi MIX Fold 2: Battery

The Huawei Mate Xs 2 comes with a 4,600mAh battery, while the Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 has a 4,500mAh battery on the inside. The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 may have a slightly smaller battery pack, but it offers better battery life. The Huawei Mate Xs 2 did not do particularly well in our testing. In fact, the battery life was quite disappointing. I was able to get between 4 and 5 hours of screen-on-time, which is not particularly great.

The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 should be able to squeeze out noticeably more than that. It will all depend on your usage, of course, as I always say. There are simply too many factors involved, and you could end up with considerably different numbers. That is especially true if you have poor signal most of the time, play a lot of games, or do something else that puts strain on the processor.

You’ll be glad to know that both of these devices do support fast charging. The Huawei Mate Xs 2 supports 66W charging, while the Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 offers 65W charging. The charging speeds are somewhat comparable, you’ll be able to get them charged up really fast. Do note that the Mate Xs 2 also supports reverse wired charging. Neither of the two phones has support for wireless charging, though.

Huawei Mate Xs 2 vs Xiaomi MIX Fold 2: Cameras

Both of these phones have three cameras on the back. The Huawei Mate Xs 2 includes a 50-megapixel main camera, a 13-megapixel ultrawide unit, and an 8-megapixel telephoto camera. The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 features a 50-megapixel main camera, a 13-megapixel ultrawide unit, and an 8-megapixel telephoto shooter. So they both have wide, ultrawide, and telephoto cameras on the back.

The sensors and lenses are different, though, of course, despite the fact the megapixels are the same. Which one comes out on top, and are they any good? Well, both phones do have good camera performance, but they’re vastly different at the same time. The Huawei Mate Xs 2 aims to provide a more natural look, while the Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 images look slightly more saturated, and also do seem sharper, even though that’s not necessarily the case.

Based on what we’ve seen, the Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 does a better job with the main camera. We’ve come to expect a lot from Huawei’s phones, especially high-end ones, and the Mate Xs 2 is not quite there. The phone does seem to have an issue with the white balance from time to time, as it tends to overexpose shots in lower lighting conditions. Its ultrawide camera also delivers a noticeably more saturated image than the main sensor.

The Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 wide and ultrawide cameras are more balanced in terms of colors. Those are just some differences between them.

Both do capture enough details, and ultrawide cameras are good on both. The same goes for telephoto cameras, though the Mate Xs 2’s offers more lossless zoom. All in all, both are good, but there are better camera smartphones out there, from each of these companies, actually.

Audio

Both the Huawei Mate Xs 2 and Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 include stereo speakers. The ones on the Xiaomi MIX Fold 2 are tuned by Harman Kardon. The speakers on both phones sound really good, though the soundstage seems to be a bit wider on Xiaomi’s handset. They are both plenty loud, and plenty sharp as well.

What neither of these two phones has is a 3.5mm headphone jack. One would think such large phones will include one, but that’s not the case. Each company wanted to keep the phones as thin as possible, so this is an understandable omission, and one we’re already used to.

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