Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra review: creeping closer to a 1-inch camera sensor

Can the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra camera really topple the Samsung Galaxy S21 and iPhone 12 Pro?

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
(Image: © Basil Kronfli/Digital Camera World)

Digital Camera World Verdict

Xiaomi’s most premium phone to date, the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra pulls no punches when it comes to dishing out top-tier specs. It’s also a beast of a camera phone on paper, with an almost 1-inch sensor, nearing that Sony RX100 VII sensor-size. Despite inching towards that milestone, however, the camera can’t quite edge ahead of the best camera phones in a few key areas, namely reliable performance, especially when it comes to managing shadows. Nevertheless, the Mi 11 Ultra is a clear statement: Xiaomi isn’t playing, and can create a mighty flagship smartphone as well as the best budget phones on the block.


  • +

    Striking, bright, sharp, smooth screen

  • +

    Excellent camera system

  • +

    Powerful performance


  • -

    Gimmicky rear display

  • -

    Camera bump is huge

  • -

    Mediocre battery life

Why you can trust Digital Camera World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out how we test.

The most specced out phone of 2021 is here – the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra, loaded up with an almost 1-inch camera sensor, two screens (one either side), and a camera bump you can see from space. This could be the biggest statement from Xiaomi to date. 

Xiaomi already makes the best budget camera phone around, the 108MP Redmi Note 10 Pro, but can the Mi 11 Ultra give the once underdog manufacturer, now a top three smartphone player, a best-in-class flagship phone too?

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Basil Kronfli

Basil Kronfli is a freelance technology journalist, consultant, and content creator. He trained in graphic design and started his career at Canon Europe before moving into journalism. Basil is also experienced in video production, independently running the YouTube channel TechEdit, and during his time at Future, he worked alongside the Digital Camera World team as a senior video producer.