Xiaomi’s new flagship 12 series goes all-in on AI camera features

The 12, 12 Pro, and 12X from Xiaomi are set to hit shelves in China starting December 31.

Xiaomi's 12 model (left) and 12 Pro model (right)

Xiaomi has debuted its latest flagship phones, the 12 series, which comes with cameras aided by smart tracking technology derived from its creepy robo dog. Instead of assessing potential obstacles, however, Xiaomi says its AI will help ensure you never miss your focus while taking a picture.

CyberFocus, as the company is calling it, gives the phone cameras the ability to simultaneously identify human eyes and figures, which then lets the machine learning algorithm analyze and remember the subject’s features so it can keep focus even if the subject moves. Xiaomi said they also revamped the cameras by improving burst mode shooting and reducing shutter lag significantly.

Adding a layer of AI and machine learning to its phone cameras could separate Xiaomi’s 12 series lineup from its many competitors, including Apple, which just usurped the company for the No. 2 spot in global smartphone market share rankings according to the latest charts.

Three options — Xiaomi’s latest flagship series will come in three different styles, the Xiaomi 12, the Xiaomi 12 Pro and the more budget-friendly Xiaomi 12X. Both the Xiaomi 12 and 12 Pro will be powered by a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip, DisplayMate A+ OLED displays and LPDDR5 RAM. As for the Xiaomi 12X, the company also detailed that it would be built with a Snapdragon 870.

The base 12 model phone will have a 6.28-inch flexible OLED screen with 2400x1080 resolution and 120Hz refresh rate, while the 12 Pro will feature a larger 6.73-inch 2K display with 3200x1440 resolution. Xiaomi’s 12 Pro will also be built with a 120W single-cell 4,600mAh battery that allows for fast charging.

While both flagship models’ cameras have the smart tracking feature and night mode option, the 12 Pro’s glass offers way more megapixels. The 12 Pro is equipped with three 50-megapixel cameras, including the main rear Sony IMX707 camera with a 1/1.28” sensor, a 115-degree ultra-wide lens and a 2x telephoto lens. On the other hand, the 12 offers a 50-megapixel Sony IMX766 main camera with a smaller 1/1.56” sensor, a 13-megapixel ultra-wide camera and a 5-megapixel telemacro camera.

Starting at around $500 — Both the 12 and 12 Pro will be available in black, blue or purple glass alongside a green vegan leather option. Both models also come in three varieties offering different internal memory and RAM options, but the 12 starts at roughly $580 and the 12 Pro starts at around $737. The more budget 12X will start at around $501.

All three of Xiaomi’s 12 series will be available in China starting on December 31st at 8 p.m. Alongside its new 12 lineup, Xiaomi also announced three new wearables, its Watch S1, its Buds 3 and Buds 3 Pro in a new blue color.