Xiaomi Hits Oppo With A Counter-Punch, Reveals Its Own Device With Under-Display Camera

Xiaomi founder and CEO Lei Jun attends a launch ceremony of the new flagship phone Xiaomi Mi 9 in Beijing
Xiaomi founder and CEO Lei Jun attends a launch ceremony of the new flagship phone Xiaomi Mi 9 in Beijing, China February 20, 2019. (Photo: REUTERS/Jason Lee)

Just several hours after Oppo flaunted the world's first-ever smartphone device with an under-display camera, Xiaomi lands a direct hit at the smartphone maker when it also unveiled its own smartphone with the same technology. While the competing Chinese phone makers appear to be boxing each other online, consumers are wondering when the devices will be made available.

Mi9 Prototype

Xiaomi President Lin Bin uploaded a video on Weibo and later shared on Twitter Xiaomi Mi9. The device sports a front-facing camera totally hidden behind the screen of the phone. The video was reportedly taken last month where the Under-Screen camera was integrated to the Mi9 prototype. The president shared that the device has no hole, no pop-up selfie camera, and no notch.

From the recent post of Xiaomi's president, it appears that the Mi9 will be released without any hole punches in the front, without notches on its display screen, or even a pop-up selfie camera along with the OLED display. While it is not clear how the new technology works, it was earlier reported that the company filed a patent that seems to cover the same functionality as the latest prototype. The patent reveals a couple of alternately-driven portions in the display that enables the light to get through the sensor of the camera.

From the latest uploaded video, the Mi9 prototype seems functional but, there are no details available yet as to when this device will be available to the public. Last March 2019, the company also teased on Weibo a video of its foldable device but it's been a couple of months and we have not yet heard anything again about the device from the Chinese flagship phone killer maker.

Oppo's Notch-Free Prototype

Earlier today, Oppo Vice President Brain Shen also shared a brief video of a notch-free prototype. The camera app of the device was launched. The screen shows a live view of the room's ceiling despite the absence of a front-facing camera in sight. The vice president even hovered his finger over the spot where the camera is supposedly concealed to add more credibility to the video clip. The under-display concept of Oppo and Xiaomi could be a great solution since without the front camera there will be no wear and tear. In addition, users will no longer have to worry about the fragile part of the device. Like Xiaomi, Oppo has not yet revealed when their new device will be available.

There are speculations that Oppo's sister company and main rival in China and other Southeast Asian countries, is also working on similar technology. The company has already teased about this during the APEX 2019 last March.

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