Xiaomi and Leica want to deliver the Leica experience on a phone

From software to hardware, these phones have Leica's footprint all over.

by Justin Choo

At the heart of Xiaomi’s new flagships Xiaomi 13 and 13 Pro is a collaboration with Leica and the Leica x Xiaomi photography experience.

Both smartphones come with a triple camera setup featuring Leica Vario-Summicron lenses. The Pro version gets 50MP sensors for all cameras as well as the 1″ IMX989 sensor for its main shooter, paired with the LEICA VARIO-SUMMICRON 1:1.9-2.2/14-75 ASPH system (14-75mm); it comprises a 23mm wide-angle main camera with an ultra-large 1-inch IMX989 sensor, a 75mm floating telephoto camera, as well as a 14mm ultra-wide angle camera.

The 75mm telephoto lens adopts a DSLR-inspired idea for its floating lens design, which achieves a focal range from 10cm to infinity, making the lens perfect for portraiture and close-ups. 

The Xiaomi 13 uses the LEICA VARIO-SUMMICRON 1:1.8-2.2/15-75 ASPH system, which comprises a 50MP, 23mm wide-angle camera, a 10MP 75mm telephoto camera, and a 12MP 15mm ultra-wide angle camera.

More than just the lens

The Leica collaboration is pretty extensive and extends to the controls, UX and photo-taking experience. Leica fans would no doubt will warm to its Leica-themed UI, Leica Filters, Leica watermark, and even the Leica classic shutter sound. Built around Xiaomi Imaging Engine for enhanced photo-capturing speeds, and automatic focus on certain subjects in motion (Xiaomi ProFocus), you have more importantly, the colour science tweaks to achieve that iconic Leica look and feel: options for a Leica Authentic Look and Leica Vibrant Look. On top of that, the Pro also supports 10-Bit RAW DNG Camera and Color Profiles created by Adobe.

Two distinct designs

Apart from the difference in screen sizes–Xiaomi 13 has a 6.36″ FHD+ AMOLED display while the Pro has a 6.73″ 120Hz WQHD+ AMOLED display–they have a distinctly different look. Between the two, the Xiaomi 13 is defined by its flat-edged aluminium body while the Pro has a curved, ceramic body. If you’re into colours, the Xiaomi 13 has a rather fetching Flora Green on top of the usual safe options that both the Xiaomi 13 and the Xiaomi 13 Pro have: White or Black.

Both phones use E6 panels and are rated for 1,200 nits full-screen brightness and 1,900 nits peak brightness along with TrueColor colour accuracy, which is great for photography. In addition, they both support Dolby Vision, HDR10+, HDR10, HLG and Dolby Atmos.

Though they both share the same SoC, a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, the differences aren’t always significant. The two phones offer Wi-Fi 7 support with Qualcomm FastConnect 7800 Mobile Connectivity System, but the Xiaomi 13 features Dual Band Simultaneous (DBS) Multi-Link (up to 3.6Gbps network speed) while the Pro version gets the High Band Simultaneous (HBS) Multi-Link, which allows for multiple and simultaneous 5GHz and 6GHz connections (up to 5.8 Gbps) along with reduced latency. 

The Xiaomi 13 comes with a 4,500mAh battery and supports 67W wired fast charging and 50W wireless fast charging. The Xiaomi 13 Pro is slightly better in this regard with a larger 4,820mAh battery, faster 120W wired fast charging and 50W wireless fast charging. Both smartphones are equipped with the Xiaomi Surge battery management system for longer service life. 

Both phones have IP68 dust and water resistance, three generations of Android system updates and five years of security patch updates. You also receive six months of free trial for both Google One cloud storage of up to 2TB, and up to three months of YouTube Premium.

On top of that, Xiaomi is offering one out-of-warranty repair without labour cost within the first 12 months after purchase, along with international warranty service in over 40 markets worldwide.

Pricing and Availability 

Currently available for pre-order until 10 March 2023, the Xiaomi 13 is priced at 1,199 (12Gb + 256GB) and the Pro is priced at $1,599 (12GB + 512GB) and $1,699 (12GB + 512GB).

Pre-order benefits while stocks last:

  • Xiaomi 13 (12GB+256GB) 
    • Retail: Free Xiaomi Watch S1 worth $299
    • Lazada Exclusive: Free $150 OFF voucher
  • Xiaomi 13 Pro (12GB+256GB) / Xiaomi 13 Pro (12GB+512GB)
    • Retail: Free Xiaomi Watch S1 worth $299 and Redmi Buds 4 Pro worth $129 
    • Lazada Exclusive: Free $200 OFF voucher



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