Xiaomi Mi 4i vs. Apple iPhone 5C: Comparison of supposed twins

The Mi 4i was one of the latest devices released by Xiaomi in some countries, and again the Chinese company was accused of copying a competitor device, in this case Apple's iPhone 5C. In this comparison we will analyze whether these accusations have any truth. Check out our full comparison below.

Xiaomi Mi 4i vs. Apple iPhone 5C: Design and Finishing

When we look at the popular images of these devices, we can say that the Mi 4i is almost a Chinese copy of the iPhone 5C. But this statement can be partially overturned after a few moments with both devices in hand.

xiaomi mi4i back
Mi 4i's back little resembles the iPhone 5C. / ANDROIDPIT

Looking at both devices, one notices a similarity on the back. Both devices are constructed of rigid polycarbonate, which surrounds the four sides of the back. The iPhone 5C vaguely resembles the finish of the Motorola Moto G 2014, while the Mi 4i has a flatter surface. The main similarity can be noticed from both models in white color, since the end result the same: white in the back and black glass in all the front.

iphone 5c white
Bright back of the iPhone 5C. / Apple

The weight of both devices similar with 130 grams for the Mi 4i and 132 grams for the iPhone 5C. Despite the similarity in weight, the iPhone 5C appears to be slightly heavier. The difference in weight may be due to the more compact size of the Apple model, which is slightly more compact and dense.

iphone 5c colors
Physical buttons on the left in various color options on the iPhone 5C. / Apple

The matt and dull Mi 4i's polycarbonate, while the same material on the iPhone 5C has a smoother, more shiny look. The Mi device has the physical keys positioned on the right side with metallic finish. The iPhone 5C displaces the volume buttons on the left, while the power button is positioned at the top.

xiaomi mi4i buttons
Metallic physical boats from Mi 4i. / ANDROIDPIT

Despite being larger, the Mi 4i's design is quite ergonomic, making handling the device with a more pleasant hand. The power button on the right side seems to suit users better, something we can see on current Apple models.

Xiaomi Mi 4i vs. Apple iPhone 5C: Screen

Before moving on, it is noteworthy that the iPhone 5C is a model that hit the market in September 2013, while the Mi 4i was launched in the Asian market in April 2015. Therefore, with two years of natural difference that the Chinese manufacturer's model presents most current technologies relative to their adversary.

Both devices have LCD screens with IPS technology. Different panel size with 4 inches for iPhone 5 and 5 inches for Mi 4i. The resolutions are also different: 1136×640 pixels for the iPhone 5C and 1920×1080 for the Mi 4i. These differences add up to points for the Mi 4i, which delivers about 100ppi more than the iPhone 5C.

xiaomi mi4i hero
Mi 4i screen. ANDROIDPIT

Viewing angles and color reproduction are great on both devices, while the slightly more pronounced brightness on the iPhone 5C. Leveraging the front is also a highlight in the Mi 4i, which has 71.7% of the screen fill, while the iPhone 5C only reaches 60%.

Xiaomi Mi 4i vs. Apple iPhone 5C: Specifications

The Mi 4i packaged by the Snapdragon 615 octa-core processor (1.7GHz quad-core + 1.0Ghz quad-core), with 2GB of RAM and 16GB for internal storage. Meanwhile, the iPhone 5C runs the dual-core Apple A6 processor with 1GB of RAM and 8GB for internal storage (16GB version is currently discontinued). The hardware suite capable of running iOS 8.3 smoothly, however, recent Apple system updates are making 1GB of RAM almost insufficient.

For cameras, the iPhone 5C has an 8MP rear sensor with LED flash, and a front camera with a slightly ridiculous 1.2MP resolution. On the other hand, the Mi 4i is equipped with a 13MP rear sensor accompanied by a two-tone LED flash, and a 5MP front camera capable of recording 1080p video at 30fps. Both devices capture good images, but you can see a slight advantage for the set of cameras available on the Mi 4i.

xiaomi mi4i camera
Mi 4i camera with dual LED flash. / ANDROIDPIT

The Mi 4i's battery capacity is 3120 mAh, almost three times higher than the iPhone 5C. The Apple device has a battery of 1510 Mah capacity. It can be said that the Mi 4i delivers slightly higher autonomy with moderate consumption.

Xiaomi Mi4i vs. Apple iPhone 5c Technical Specifications

Xiaomi Mi4i
          Apple iPhone 5c


Battery Size:

Screen size:

Screen Technology:


Front camera

Rear camera


Android version:



Internal Memory:

Removable Memory:


Number of cores:


138.1 x 69.6 x 7.8 mm 8.97 x 59.2 x 124.4 mm
130g 132 g
3120 mAh Not yet available.
5 inches 4 inches
LCD Not yet available.
1920 x 1080 pixels (441 ppi) 1136 x 640 pixels (226 ppi)
5 megapixels 1.2 megapixels
13 megapixels 8 megapixels
Dual-led LED
5.0 – Lollipop Not yet available.
MIUI Not yet available.
2 GB 1024 MB
16 GB 16 GB32 GB
Not available Not yet available.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 Apple A6
8th 2
HSPA, LTE, Dual SIM, Bluetooth 4.1 HSPA, LTE, Bluetooth 4.0

Xiaomi Mi 4i vs. Apple iPhone 5C: Where to buy

The iPhone 5C was launched in Brazil in November 2013 from $ 2,000 (16GB). Currently, the device can be purchased for $ 1,499 (8GB) through Apple's official store. The Xiaomi Mi 4i was launched in April 2015 in India. In that country the device costs 12,999 Rp, something around R $ 630,00. For now, the Mi 4i needs to be imported into Brazil, which diminishes its advantage for the local public. However, the company has already started its activities in the domestic market, and Mi 4i is a strong candidate to appear in Xiaomi's catalog in Brazil.

Xiaomi Mi 4i vs. Apple iPhone 5C: Conclusion

The difference in specifications is quite obvious, mainly because of the two year difference between the release of both devices. But surprisingly, the value of the iPhone 5C has not dropped as it should for a model that has gone from 16GB to just 8GB. The Mi 4i may be subtly the same as the iPhone 5C in design, but one thing is clear from this comparison: the copy fared better than the original.

Article made in partnership with Luis Ortega Hace from AndroidPIT.es.

In your opinion, is the Mi 4i a copy or better?

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