Mi Max 3 Android 9 Pie update (global stable) currently rolling out

Kingshuk De Kingshuk De Mar 04, 2019 Android, Pie

The phablet form factor used to be a game changer thing. Samsung redefined the genre with their Galaxy Note lineup and set the benchmark.

Some OEMs tried to step into the shoes, but the S Pen along with Samsung’s optimization of their apps for the large form factor helped the Korean giant to stay on the throne.

samsung_galaxy_note_9_front_back_s_pen
Samsung Galaxy Note 9 with S Pen

Lately, there has been a change in the smartphone design language. The tablet market is shrinking rapidly, and the form factor is gradually is converging with phones. Manufacturers force end users to opt for larger phones, as 5 inch or lower models are getting obsolete.

They are now calling a ~7″ device as phone, while my first tablet was Nexus 7 (2012). ?

However, Xiaomi is a notable exception. The Chinese OEM actually embraces the phablet form factor with their Mi Max lineup.

mi_max_front_back
Mi Max

As a tradition, the Mi Max series acts as a buffer between the cost effective Redmi phones and the higher end flagship grade Mi lineup. The internal configurations of Max phones are often similar to upper tier Redmi Notes, with the inclusion of larger battery and way bigger display.

2016’s original Mi Max/Max Prime (codename: hydrogen/helium) was based on the hugely popular Redmi Note 3 (codename: kenzo/kate). Next year, Redmi Note 4 (codename: mido) inspired Mi Max 2 (codename: oxygen).

mi_max_2_front_back
Mi Max 2

Continuing the tradition, 2018’s Mi Max 3 (codename: nitrogen) was built on Redmi Note 5 Pro (codename: whyred). By the virtue of Mi series, the Max lineup is eligible to get two major Android version updates, whereas the Redmi Note phones are usually limited to one.

Fortunately, Xiaomi is trying to bring useful enhancements in their software development process. Redmi Note 5 Pro is a part of Pie beta testing, which makes it first phone in the Redmi Note series to get two major updates.

redmi_note_5_pro_red_front_back
Redmi Note 5 Pro will get official Pie update soon

Mi Max 3 was launched in July 2018 with MIUI 9 based on Android 8.1 Oreo. Like Redmi Note 5 Pro, the gigantic 6.99 inch phone is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 636. RAM and storage configs are 4/6GB LPDDR4X and 64/128 GB eMMC 5.1. A hybrid microSD slot is also there, supporting up to 256 GB.

mi_max_3_front_back
Mi Max 3

Battery capacity is 5500 mAh, and the phablet supports 18W Quick Charge 3.0 charging over USB Type-C port. Xiaomi has been testing Android Pie for it since few days via their beta channels, and pushed stable build for China in the last week of February.

On the other hand, the global users on stable channel are stuck with MIUI 10.2.1 based on Oreo since December. Today they are finally getting the sweet Pie update.

mi_max_3_pie_global_stable_ota
OTA prompt – pretty minimalistic changelog ;)

The MIUI version number is unchanged though, just the minor identifiers are different. For sideload fans and manual flashers, here is the download link:

  • Device: Mi Max 3
  • Codename: nitrogen
  • Channel: Global Stable
  • Version: V10.2.1.0.PEDMIXM
  • Android: 9.0
    • Type: Recovery
      • Download: Link
      • MD5: a9972483fba5b7cc3beaf72e76358789

mi_max_3_pie_stable_about

No fastboot flashable package is available for now, but we hope it will be live soon. Xiaomi implemented Anti-Rollback (ARB) in this device, so downgrading to Oreo will be almost impossible for regular users.

Those who are locked bootloader with a virgin, unmodified device, you can manually flash the update zip using built-in System updater.

xiaomi_local_update
Click/Tap to zoom

FYI, there is a Russian variant of this phablet. Although hardware wise they are identical, the Russian version is lagging in terms of updates and still running Android Oreo.

What is your preferable form factor? Comment below.

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Kingshuk De

I came from a mixed background of Statistics and Computer Science. My research domains included embedded computer systems, mobile computing and delay tolerant networks in post-disaster scenarios. Apart from tinkering with gadgets or building hackintosh, I like to hop on various subreddits and forums like MyDigitalLife and XDA.