As we near the end of the 2022, there are increasing conversations about the Samsung Galaxy S23, which is expected to arrive in February 2023. But hold your horses, as a major competitor is incoming, complete with a killer camera feature – and a launch date sooner than originally expected.
I am talking, of course, about the Xiaomi 13 series. Which is now official, insomuch as the Chinese giant has dropped a teaser poster – or, more accurately, multiple posters – across social media, showing off some theoretically Samsung Galaxy-rivalling features.
Principal among them, as you can see from the image up top, is that Xiaomi is extending its partnership with renowned German optical and camera-maker, Leica. The pair first collaborated on the Xiaomi 12S back in summer 2022, but it looks as though that partnership is set to continue with the Xiaomi 13 series. How will Samsung respond in terms of camera setup? It's anyone's guess right now, but I don't anticipate a Leica partnership with the Korean maker.
What's also surprised me is just how early Xiaomi is going to reveal its latest flagship: the 1 December date is almost a full month sooner than the Xiaomi 12's reveal in 2021 (which, if memory serves me, was revealed on Boxing Day – one of the most awkward reveal dates for the West, as everyone is supposedly out shopping for sofa bargains).
Xiaomi 13 Series is IP68 water and dust resistance certified, finally 🙌You can also see the flat and shiny edge of the Xiaomi 13 pic.twitter.com/7WOrzaeZBoNovember 28, 2022
That earlier date does fit better with some other industry goings-on, though, as when Qualcomm announced its Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset this year (a launch I was attending), the message from the chip-maker was clear: earlier launches suit phone-makers better. Which is a roundabout way of me saying the Xiaomi 13 will almost certainly be the first flagship to feature Qualcomm's top-tier hardware. That's speedy, before 2022 is even over.
So what else can you expect from the Xiaomi 13 series? Well, not everything is known at this stage, but the teaser posters do also show-off a leather-backed finish option, and confirm IP68 water-and-dust sealing, in an image that also clearly shows the new device's screen is flat-edged, not curved.
All will be revealed on 1 December at 19:00 China time, which is 11:00 in the UK on the same day. The launch will be in Mandarin, not English, and as is typical with the phone-maker, don't expect to hear much more about the Western launch until towards Mobile World Congress time, or just prior. Which will then place it as a direct head-to-head competitor with the Samsung Galaxy S23...