Is this the simplest smart speaker you’ll buy right now?
- The Mi Smart Speaker uses Google Assistant for smart functionality
- The speaker features a single 12W full-range driver
- It’s loud, but the Mi Smart Speaker’s sound is occasionally a touch boomy
Xiaomi began in India with smartphones, but its product range now extends far and wide to incorporate televisions, laptops, smart home appliances, and audio products, among other things. After entering the competitive and popular true wireless segment earlier this year, Xiaomi has now turned its attention to a different audio product segment that hasn’t seen an excessive amount of attention from brands outside of Google and Amazon: smart speakers. The company’s first product here is that the Google Assistant-powered Mi Smart Speaker.
Launched alongside the Mi Band 5 and Mi Watch Revolve, the Mi Smart Speaker₹ 3,499 is priced at Rs. 3,499 in India. aside from access to Google Assistant and every one of its linked functions and services, the Mi Smart Speaker also has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi-based Chromecast Audio connectivity. is that this an honest alternative to the Google Home and Amazon Echo series? determine in our review.
Mi Smart Speaker design and specifications
Although not as distinctly noticeable because the Google Nest or Amazon Echo series of smart speakers, the Mi Smart Speaker is good-looking and well inbuilt its own muted and delicate way. It’s roughly an equivalent size because the Google Home and Amazon Echo (3rd Gen), and has similar sound output specifications also , but at a price that competes with their smaller and fewer capable counterparts, the Amazon Echo Dot and Google Nest Mini.
The casing of the Mi Smart Speaker is formed of tough plastic and has small rubber legs at the bottom for grip, while the grille that wraps round the speaker driver is metal. Xiaomi claims that there are 10,531 holes within the grille for sound to flow through; it’s a stimulating piece of trivia, but there’s nothing extraordinary about this. The speaker isn’t overlarge or heavy, and is portable to an outsized extent, but does got to be connected to a wall plug for power; there is no built-in battery.
At the rear of the Mi Smart Speaker may be a single socket to attach the included power adapter; there is no wired input here, and you will need to believe either Wi-Fi or Bluetooth to receive audio content. the highest of the speaker has four touch-sensitive buttons: volume up and down, play/ pause, and microphone mute. you’ll got to have the Mi Smart Speaker connected to Wi-Fi for full functionality, but it’s possible to use Bluetooth for audio even without Internet access, provided you’ve paired it together with your source device already.
Setup is straightforward , and is accomplished using the Google Home app almost like how Google’s own smart speakers are configured. you’ll use this app to link your Google account, connect the speaker to a Wi-Fi network, and link services like Spotify, YouTube Music, Gaana, and JioSaavn. you’ll also let relations hook up with the speaker, and found out Google Assistant’s voice match functions for personalised responses.
Once found out , there are 3 ways to play music on the Mi Smart Speaker: AskGoogle Assistant to start out directly streaming something from a linked service, or use Google Chromecast Audio or Bluetooth. the previous two need Internet access to figure . Both Wi-Fi based methods worked well on my home Internet connection for Spotify and YouTube Music, while Bluetooth was also stable over distances of up to fifteen feet.
The Mi Smart Speaker features a single 63.5mm full-range driver, with a rated output of 12W and sound tuning by DTS. There are two far-field microphones at the highest which are always listening for Google Assistant commands. a light-weight ring at the highest illuminates when needed, either to allow you to know that the microphones are off (orange) or that the speaker is listening for commands (light blue). The ring is stated to be capable of exposure to 16 million colours, but this functionality is predicted to be activated through an OTA update later.
Mi Smart Speaker performance
Smart speakers priced under Rs. 5,000 are typically a touch basic when it involves sound quality, like entry-level Bluetooth speakers. this is often what makes the Mi Smart Speaker so special; it offers performance almost like that of larger smart speakers, while priced comparably to an entry-level product.
With 12W of sound output through its single large full-range driver, the Mi Smart Speaker is loud, and largely on par with the Google Home and Amazon Echo (3rd Gen) when it involves volume. I found the sound to be a touch plain and fewer refined than on the Amazon Echo (3rd Gen), with the Mi Smart Speaker sounding a touch boomy at high volumes. the only driver also means the soundstage may be a bit narrow.
That said, it is a safe sonic signature that’s comfortable and enjoyable in the least volumes, no matter whether you’re using Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to fetch audio content. The bass did tend to overpower the mid-range and highs due to the way the speaker is tuned, making the mid-range sound a touch dull, compared to the punchy lows. Sound quality was a touch better on Wi-Fi than Bluetooth, but the difference wasn’t significant.
Google Assistant works needless to say on the Mi Smart Speaker, with decent wake word recognition from even across the space at up to 12 feet away. there have been occasional misfires, but most of the time the speaker was ready to understand voice commands properly. Google’s voice match feature means it can understand and respond personally to different users in my household. While I used it in English, Google Assistant does add Hindi also , for those that could be easier thereupon language.
Like the Google Home, it had been particularly handy for its always-on microphone, and that i could control my linked television, smart light bulbs, and cleaning robot, all completely by voice. Another rather good touch is that responses aren’t always within the sort of words; asking the Mi Smart Speaker to show on my smart light bulb, for instance , had the speaker respond with a soft affirmative chime that was tons more pleasant to listen to than Google Assistant’s typical voice replies.
With decent, loud sound; stable and reliable connectivity; and capable Google Assistant integration, the Mi Smart Speaker is sort of easily the simplest smart speaker you’ll buy for fewer than Rs. 5,000. It’s like far more expensive options from Amazon and Google. Everything works as it’s alleged to , and there are not any significant drawbacks here. For Rs. 3,499, this is often a no brainer .
If you’ll spend more, the Mi Smart Speaker might not be the simplest regular-sized smart speaker though, because of boomy and plain sound that does not quite match up thereto of the Amazon Echo series. However, it’s definitely the foremost value-for-money option you’ll buy immediately , because of its functional and straightforward approach that gets the work done.