There are not a lot of compact Android flagship phones, but f0r those looking to pick up one in 2022, the Samsung Galaxy S22 and Xiaomi 12 are two options currently available. But which of these two phones is the better device? Xiaomi hasn’t released a compact flagship in years in comparison to Samsung. However, its 2021 flagship, the Xiaomi M11, packs a massive 6.81-inch screen that dwarfs the Galaxy S21’s 6.2-inch display.
Most Android smartphones have a big display that is difficult to operate with one hand. However, some manufacturers have been shipping their phones with a software solution called One-Handed Mode (now baked into Android 12) that shrinks the user interface, making it possible to reach buttons and controls on the screen easily. Regardless, there is still a need for phones that are not ridiculously big, but unfortunately, only a few manufacturers are catering to this segment.
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The Galaxy S22 and the Xiaomi 12 are quite different in looks. Samsung has adopted a flat display on the front, while the Xiaomi Mi 12 has a curved display panel. Their different designs are further highlighted on the back — the Galaxy S22’s triple rear cameras have the same sized holes and housing that seems to be fused to the frame. In contrast, the Xiaomi 12 has an island-style camera housing with one oversized sensor and two small ones. Both phones are covered in glass on both sides and have a metal frame. However, the Galaxy S22 has the advantage of having IP68 dust- and water-resistance rating, while the Xiaomi 12 is completely lacking any ingress protection.
The Galaxy S22 Is The More Compact Phone
The Galaxy S22 is the smaller device of the two, with a 6.1-inch screen housed in a 146 × 70.6 × 7.6 mm body. The AMOLED display has a 120Hz refresh rate, a 2340 x 1080 resolution, and Gorilla Glass Victus+ protection. The Xiaomi 12 is bigger as it measures 152.7 × 69.9 ×8.16 mm thanks to its larger 6.28-inch AMOLED display. Like the Galaxy S22, it has a refresh rate of 120Hz, an FHD+ resolution (can display over 68 billion colors), and has a fingerprint scanner under the screen. It is also protected by Gorilla Glass Victus and has Dolby Vision. Both phones are powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, though those in Europe get an Exynos 2200 inside the Galaxy S22 sold there. The Xiaomi 12 is available with up to 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM and 256GB of UFS 3.1 storage, while the Galaxy S22 comes with 8GB of RAM and either 128GB or 256GB of storage. Buyers won’t find a MicroSD card slot on either device.
Samsung’s flagship has a 50MP f/1.8 primary rear camera, a 10MP telephoto camera with 3x optical zoom, and a 12MP f/2.2 120° ultrawide angle camera. In contrast, the Xiaomi 12 has a 50MP f/1.8 camera, a 13MP f/2.4 ultrawide angle camera, and a 5MP telemacro camera. Both phones can record in 8K, but while the Galaxy S22’s 10MP front-facing camera can record in 4K, the 32MP selfie camera on Xiaomi’s flagship maxes out at 1080p. The two phones have stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos, NFC, Wi-Fi 6E, and Bluetooth 5.2, but they are both missing audio jacks. There is a 3700mAh battery inside the Galaxy S22 with support for 25W fast charging and 15W wireless charging. The Xiaomi 12 packs a bigger 4500mAh battery and supports 67W fast charging and 50W fast wireless charging. The two phones run Android 12 out of the box, and while Samsung promises four OS upgrades and five years of security updates, Xiaomi says the Mi 12 will receive 3 OS upgrades and four years of security updates.
Starting at $799 and available in eight color options, the Galaxy S22 has the advantage of being more compact, having better cameras, overall better build, and more extended software support, but it is more expensive, packs a smaller battery, charges significantly slower, and is only available in a single RAM variant. On the other hand, the Xiaomi 12 starts at $749 and comes in three colors (global version). It is not only cheaper, but it has an impressive display, a 12GB RAM option, and a bigger battery that charges much faster, regardless of whether it is via wired or wireless. However, its cameras are not as good as the Galaxy S22’s, and Xiaomi’s software support still trails behind Samsung’s.