Xiaomi will soon launch the first phones it has built with Leica, announcing a big launch event for Monday, July 4. The company made the announcement on its Weibo account, confirming that it will launch the Xiaomi 12S series on that date.
Xiaomi announced a partnership with Leica earlier this year, highlighting the brand’s recent focus on the camera. Although Xiaomi’s camera phones haven’t exactly been bad in the past, the company hopes to be able to compete more favorably with darlings from Apple, Samsung and Google. It’s also seen rivals from Vivo and OnePlus team up with Zeiss and Hasselblad in recent years with good results.
“Xiaomi is focused on creating the ultimate user experience and has always hoped to explore the capabilities of smartphone photography to the extreme. Xiaomi and Leica agree on each other’s goals and ideas and value the each other’s advantages and industry. This cooperation will give a strong impetus to Xiaomi’s imaging strategy,” said Lei Jun, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Xiaomi Group during the announcement. “During the cooperation, from optical design to fine-tuning of aesthetic orientations, the innovative technologies, product philosophies and imaging preferences of both parties have experienced an unprecedented deep collision and fusion.”
Leica’s CEO shared similar comments, saying the company would help deliver “outstanding image quality, classic Leica aesthetics, [and] unrestricted creativity. Previously, Leica collaborated with Huawei on its flagship phones.
The Xiaomi 12S series is expected to be the first fruits of this partnership, with the Xiaomi 12S Ultra (previously leaked as 12 Ultra) becoming the company’s first camera phone. It is expected to feature a Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 processor and a 6.6-inch 1440p AMOLED display with a smooth refresh rate. It is also said to come with a quad-camera setup that matches, if not exceeds, the Xiaomi 11 Ultra. We’re expecting a 50-megapixel main camera, a 48MP ultra-wide, a 48MP periscope lens for portraits and zoom, and a mysterious fourth sensor whose details remain unknown. As for the 12S and 12Pro, we’ll know more when Xiaomi announces the phones on Monday.