Xiaomi has launched its first-ever laptop in India. People were waiting for laptops from Xiaomi for a very long time now. Just like its every other product, Xiaomi has priced it way below what people would expect looking at its specs. The Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition starts at a price of Rs 54,999, whereas the standard Mi NoteBook 14 begins at Rs 41,999 in the country. Xiaomi is trying to create an ecosystem of products just like Apple does. It has already launched smartphones, Mi Bands, Air Purifiers and Smart TVs in the past. Now with the Mi NoteBook range of laptops, Xiaomi is entering into yet another category. Xiaomi is an ecosystem company in China and it is aiming to become the same in India as well. With every product Xiaomi is bringing to India, it is building an ecosystem and making them compatible with each other. One such compatibility of the NoteBook is that when you bring your Mi Band closer to your laptop, it will automatically unlock the laptop for you. At the same time, you can also set an automatic screen lock with the help of your band. Xiaomi has sent us a review unit of Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition and here are our first impressions of the same.
Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition First Impressions: Design and Build Quality
First of all, let’s talk about the design of Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition. The laptop is very light in weight weighing at 1.35Kg. It has a completely metal finished body. An interesting thing about the laptop is that there is no branding from Mi on top which for some reason makes the laptop look very classy. Even though it is not as sleek as MacBook Air, it is pretty thin compared to other laptops in the same price segment. Xiaomi has claimed that you can lift the screen of the laptop with just a single finger and that is indeed true.
The form factor of the laptop is very compact. It is the reason why you might feel as if the laptop’s a little heavier than 1.35Kg. There are two rubber strips on the bottom of the laptop where the speakers are located. These strips keep the laptop at a higher position than the ground level helping it with cooling. Coming to the ports present on the laptop, there is one USB Type-C port, two USB 3.1 ports, one HDMI port, LED indicator, power port on the right side and on the left side is a USB 2.0 port along with a 3.5mm audio jack. There are two microphone holes in the front as well.
Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition First Impressions: Keyboard and Trackpad
If you are used to working with a very big keyboard, you might take a little time to adjust to the smaller and compact keyboard of Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition. The keyboard is a chiclet-style keyboard with a scissor mechanism. You will get key travel of 1.3mm which is decent. Once you get used to the keyboard, you will love how it works. The experience of typing on the laptop will be pretty smooth. Another thing worth noting is the keyboard is not backlit, which might irk some users.
Coming to the trackpad of the laptop, Xiaomi has offered a multi-functioning trackpad. It means that you can use it for different purposes such as pinching to zoom or use it as a scroll bar and more. The trackpad’s size is pretty decent compared to the compact size of the laptop.
Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition First Impressions: Display and Security
You are bound to love the Horizon display of the Mi NoteBook. The thin bezels just add to the beauty of the display. You also get a 60Hz display with the device which is again something you will love. The maximum viewing angle which you can get with the laptop is 178 degrees. The company has managed to add a 14-inch Full HD screen in the body of a 13.3-inch model which is impressive and that's the reason behind the high screen-to-body ratio.
Talking about the security of the device, you don’t get the fingerprint scanner with the laptop. However, Xiaomi has introduced the ‘Mi Blaze Unlock’ feature with the laptop. As mentioned above, you can use your band to unlock the laptop. The display seemed very good during our initial usage, but we will have to say more about it in our full usage.
Also, the Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition lacks a webcam, but Xiaomi is bundling a free Mi HD Webcam inside the retail box which will get the job done.
Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition First Impressions: Hardware Specs
The Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition is one of the most interesting laptops. It comes with the 10th generation Intel Core i7 processor which is very fast. Then it has 8GB DDR4 RAM which interestingly can’t be expanded. So in case you want more RAM, you will have to swap it with a higher RAM card. As for the internal storage, you get 512GB M.2 SSD on NVMe which will be very fast compared to SATA. It has a graphic card of 2GB GDDR5 NVIDIA MX 350 which in my opinion is one of the first laptops to feature this card.
Talking about the battery, Xiaomi has claimed that you will get a backup of 10 hours. If you are using it for gaming, then the battery backup might be reduced to 7 hours. If you want to use USB Type-C port for charging, then you can use that as well and you can even attach Type-C earphones to listen music. For the OS, you get Windows 10 Home Edition and with it, you get a 30 day free trial of Microsoft Office 365 after which you will have to pay for it.
The audio output is quite good from the Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition. There are two 2 watt speakers which are at the bottom of the laptop. With the thin bezels and good sound output, you will love the experience of watching videos on your laptop.
Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition First Impressions: Performance
If you are working about whether you can go for editing videos or doing heavy gaming with this laptop, the answer is yes, you can do that. But just remember, this is a 14-inch normal laptop, so if you are comparing it with a gaming pc or gaming laptop, you won’t enjoy the editing or gaming as much. We were able to install basic apps like Google Chrome and Epic Games launcher as the laptop was with us for less than 48 hours. We will be installing more apps in the coming days along with some high-end games to test the performance of the Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition.
Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition First Impressions: Price
If you look at the specs of the laptop and look at the starting price of Rs 54,999 for its one variant, and Rs 59,999 for its second higher one, you should be very happy. This is because, if you look at some other brand offering around the same specs, they would be priced much more than this. But this pricing range is perfect for Mi NoteBook 14 Horizon Edition with its specs and performance, however, on-paper specs are not everything, so wait for our full review of the product coming early next week.