A consumer checks out smartphones (Reuters)
A consumer checks out smartphones (Reuters)Reuters

Chinese consumer electronics giant Xiaomi set foot in the Indian market last month, with the official release of the company's flagship smartphone Mi3.

In all four flash sales of Mi3 since 22 July, the company has received tremendous response from the Indian public, with stocks running out in a few seconds on Flipkart.

The overwhelming response from the public to Mi3 is no surprise, considering its features and dirt-cheap price-tag. Now, branded phones, even in the ₹20,000 range, seem overly priced for their specifications.

Critically acclaimed smartphones from tier-1 brands LG and Motorola - Google Nexus 5 and Moto X respectively - seem threatened by the arrival of Xiaomi Mi3.

Here is a brief comparison of Xiaomi Mi3, LG-Google Nexus 5 and Motorola Moto X:

Design and Display:

The new Xiaomi Mi 3 boasts full HD (1920x1080p) display with a staggering pixel density of 441 ppi (pixels per inch).

The Xiaomi phone does come as just another plastic phone, but if closely observed, the handset boasts Magnesium-Aluminum alloy frame around the edges and the company also claims that the rear side is protected by three layers of thermal graphite film to withstand overheating of internal components when smartphone is utilized to its extreme, like playing high-graphics game, multi-tasking with numerous apps.

On the other hand, LG's Google Nexus 5 flaunts a simplistic and yet refreshing rectangular body with a very slim bezel and weighs just 130 g. On the front side, it sports a full HD (1920x1080p) IPS LCD screen with a pixel density of 445 ppi.

Among the three devices, Moto X boasts of the unique design language; it has ergonomically crafted sloping edge near the corners, a bump in middle and its 4.7-inch body makes up for a perfect combination for one hand usage and also helps users have a comfortable hold on the phone.

The Motorola phone features energy efficient AMOLED display with pixel density of 329 ppi and also boasts of special water repellant nano-coating inside and outside.

Processor, RAM and Storage:

Both Xiaomi Mi3 and LG-Google Nexus 5 run on the 2.3GHz Snapdragon 800 series quad-core processor with 450 MHz Adreno 330 graphics engine. They come packed with sumptuous 2GB RAM and 16GB inbuilt storage variant. [Nexus 5 also available in 32GB variant]

Many would argue, number of cores and CPU speed in the smartphone is proportional to rich user experience, well Moto X's dispel this notion. Despite constrained by a dual-core Snapdragon S4 Pro chipset, it still be able to pull –off some great tricks, no other top-end phone (even Apple iPhone 5S, Samsung Galaxy S5) in the industry can boast off.

Moto X boasts a custom Motorola X8 Mobile computing system architecture. In addition to Snapdragon CPU, it also accommodates two more special utility cores - one natural language processor core and a contextual processor core.

Natural language processor powers the 'Touchless Control' feature of Moto X, the phone's mics (front & back) are always actively waiting for user to say the trigger phase 'OK, Google Now' to perform functions like setting up an alarm, put reminder on the calendar, ask direction on Google map, play music and many other operations without having to use the finger, he/she can just speak to the phone.

[Note: Google Nexus 5 and Xiaomi Mi3 users can also use voice-command features, but they have to open 'Google Now' app manually and press 'mic' icon to activate it]

Whereas, the second special-core of Moto X, 'Contextual processor' with the help of motion sensors, enables smartphone to be self aware of the environment to display time or any notifications on the screen. The device will know when the user picks the phone out of his pocket, or picks up the phone from the desk near to him and then display lights up to show the time or any pending notifications without having to unlock the phone. [This feature is similar to 'Glance' applications seen on the Windows Phone 8 OS powered Lumia smartphones]

Moto X also ships with Adreno 320 graphic engine backed by sumptuous 2GB RAM and 16GB/32GB (in select markets only).

Both Motorola phone and Nexus 5 smartphones lacks microSD slot, consumers have to be content with the limited memory.

Mobile Operating System:

In this aspect, Motorola and LG devices stand even as they both are exclusive affiliates of Google and they are the first among Android devices get the new OS updates.

It has to be noted that Moto X is the first smartphone to roll out of Motorola after it got acquired by Google in 2012. The influence of the search engine giant is noticeable in this phone as it ships with almost pure Android stock OS with value added features like Advanced Support (to remotely lock and wipe phone data) and Motorola Assist, it can intuitively know that the user is driving a vehicle, to avoid distraction, the phone automatically reads out messages and also auto-reply to a call with a text message.

LG Nexus 5 runs on pure Android mobile operating system with no OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) or the network carrier bloat ware.

Both Moto X and Google Nexus 5 devices currently run on the latest Android v4.4.4 KitKat OS.

[Also read: Android v4.4.4_R2 KitKat (KTU84Q) Rolled-Out to Google Nexus 5 in Select Regions Including India]

On the other hand, Xiaomi Mi3 runs on the tweaked Android v4.4.2 KitKat OS complimented by the custom interface MIUI. At first it looks a like bloat ware seen in some android phones, but once the user gets used to the phone there are numerous customization options. One value added feature is the option of guest mode, which lets user to lock certain folders with passwords.


LG Nexus 5 flaunts a pretty decent 8.0-megapixel main camera with OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) and HDR +, full HD video recording, photo sphere with 360-degree view and a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera.

Moto X, on the other hand, houses a 10.0-megapixel CLEAR PIXEL (RGBC) camera, LED flash, Full HD 1080p video recording ability and 2.0-megapixel front camera with full HD 1080p video recording ability.

Google has also introduced the stock camera-app to the Play Store for non-nexus devices, now Moto X and Xiaomi Mio3 users can also enjoy new features such as Photo Sphere, Panorama, Lens Blur and more [For more information on Google Camera, click here].

Another striking feature of Motorola phone is that the device boasts of 'Quick-Capture' feature where in, he/she can launch the camera in a matter of few seconds just by flipping the device twice horizontally and start snapping pictures in less time.

Xiaomi phone ships with a 13.0-megapixel camera with dual-LED flash and a 2.0-megapixel snapper on the front. Both the cameras have full HD video recording ability.

(Note: higher pixel number in camera does not guarantee a good photo, it depends on the type of lens and aperture size, wider the better)


Google Nexus 5 made its India debut back in November, with a price-tag of ₹28,999 and ₹32,999 for 16GB and 32GB variants respectively.

Moto X is only available via Flipkart for ₹23,999 (plastic models), while users have to shell out an additional ₹2,000 for wooden panel (teak, bamboo and walnut) models. Flipkart is offering some discounts this month to SBI account holders. They can avail 10 percent cash back till 18 August.

Motorola India offerMotorola India (via Twitter)

Xiaomi Mi3 comes with a dirt cheap price-tag of just ₹13,999.

So far, the copmany has conducted four Mi3 flash sales in India via Flipkart; the next is set to take place at 2:00 pm noon on 19 August at Flipkart. Only registered users can book the phone on the sale day. Interested buyers, click here [Note: Even the registered users who could not buy the Xiaomi Mi3 on 12 August has to re-apply for next week's flash sale].

Key specifications of Samsung LG-Google Nexus 5 and Motorola Moto X:

Model Xiaomi Mi3 LG-Google Nexus 5 Motorola Moto X
Display 5.0-inch full HD(1920x1080p) IPS Retina display based LCD screenPixel density: 441 ppi 4.95-inch full HD(1080x1920p) IPS LCD screen having Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protectionPixel density: 445 ppi (pixels per inch) 4.7-inch AMOLED (RGB) screen with HD 720p display resolutions, Corning Gorilla Glass 3Pixel density : 316 ppi
OS Android v4.4.2 KitKat optimized with MIUI version 5 Android v4.4.2 KitKat Android v4.4.2 KitKat
Processor 2.3GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 series quad-core CPU 2.3GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 series quad-core processor 1.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro dual-core CPU with one natural language processor core and a contextual processor core(custom Motorola X8 Mobile computing system architecture)
GPU Adreno 330 450 MHz Adreno 330 400 MHz Adreno 320 graphics engine
Storage capacity 16GB 32GB and16GB 16 GB (non-expandable)
Camera Main: 13.0-megapixel camera with auto-focus, dual-LED flash, HDRFront: 2.0-megapixel camera (with full HD video recording ability) Main: 8.0-megapixel camera with OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) and HDR +, photo sphere with 360-degree viewFront: 1.3-megapixel camera Main: 10.0-megapixel CLEAR PIXEL (RGBC) camera, LED flash,Full HD 1080p video recordingFront: 2.0-megapixel camera with full HD 1080p video recording ability
Network 3G 3G (4G-LTE in select markets) 3G (4G-LTE in select markets)
Battery 3,050 mAh; (non-removable) 2,300mAh;Talk time: up to 17 hoursStandby mode: 300 hours 2,200 mAh,Power back-up close to 24 hours
Add-ons Mini-SIM, Bluetooth v4.0, Wi-Fi (802.11 a/b/g/n/ac), micro-USB v2.0, A-GPS, GLONASS, NFC 2.3GHz Wireless Dual-band Wi-Fi (2.5G/5G) 802.11 a/b/g/n/nc, Bluetooth v4.0, NFC (Android Beam ), micro-USB, built-in wireless charging Water-repellent body coating, NFC, Bluetooth v4.0 LE + EDR, USB v2.0, Wi-Fi :802.11 a/b/g/n/ ac (dual band capability), GPRS, EDGE
Dimensions 144.0 x 73.6 x 8.1 mm 137.84 x 69.7 x 8.59 mm Height: 129.3 mmWidth: 65.3 mmCurve: 5.6-10.4 mm
Weight 146 g 130 g 130 g
Price (MRP) ₹13,999/-(available in Metallic Grey) ₹28,999(16GB) & ₹32,999(32GB)(available in black, white and red) All color variant made of plastic costs ₹23,999, Wood-panel based smartphones - Teak, Bamboo and Walnut variants costs: ₹25,999
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