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Xiaomi’s 4K Mi Box is a sleek and compact set-top box powered by Android TV

By Koh Wanzi - on 22 May 2016, 6:10pm

Xiaomi’s 4K Mi Box is a sleek and compact set-top box powered by Android TV

Note: This article was first published on 19th May 2016.

Image Source: Xiaomi

The biggest news for home owners coming out of Google I/O was probably, well, the announcement of the AI-powered Google Home speaker. But television got some love as well, as Xiaomi also announced the Mi Box, an updated version of its set-top box that now supports 4K video and Android TV.

The new Mi Box is a svelte device with an exceedingly low profile, which means it will sit unobtrusively enough in your living room.

Powered by Android TV 6.0, the device is capable of 4K video content playback at 60fps and supports Dolby Digital Plus audio playback as well. In addition, it supports the latest HDR10 standard – one of two HDR formats that is also backed by TV giants like Sony and Samsung – and the updated HDMI 2.0a specification. HDR10 will be enabled from Android N onwards, so you could soon cast HDR content from your Android device to your TV as the Mi Box also has built-in Google Cast technology.

HDR content looks poised to arrive in a big way, with content providers like YouTube and Netflix already on board, so we’ll likely be seeing more such set-top boxes in the future.

On the hardware side, the Mi Box is equipped with a quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 2.0GHz CPU and Mali 450 GPU, as well as 2GB of DDR3 RAM and 8GB of eMMC flash storage. If you need more storage, there’s also the option to add more via USB.

The included Bluetooth remote adds speech recognition features, so you can simply speak into the remote to search for content or channel surf. It also sounds rather intelligent – according to Xiaomi, you can search for things like “Leonardo DiCaprio’s Oscar movie”, or even ask who played Aragorn in Lord of the Rings. If all this sounds familiar, that's because Amazon's FireTV was the first to sport such a feature.

Image Source: Xiaomi

The remote can also double as a controller for Android TV games, but if you want a more console-style experience, a dedicated Mi Game Controller will be available separately.

Image Source: Xiaomi

The Mi Box will first launch in the US, with other markets following later. Further details on price and availability will be announced soon.

Source: Xiaomi

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