MI Note Review: the phone I take my blog photos with

When my iPhone 4 started to waver, and I saw the prices in India which aren’t on phone plans I realized I wasn’t going to be able to afford another iPhone. Ben talked me into getting this Chinese phone called MI (Xiaomi).

I fell in love with this phone and it’s what I use for all my photos of the blog. I decided to write a

Xiaomi Note Review. I wasn’t asked to by the company or anything, I just really like this phone!

At first this kid was pretty shy, but after we hung out in their yard playing with their goats (lol I just love goats right now) he was happy to let me take a picture of him!

A photo posted by Hippie In Heels (@hippieinheelsblog) on

Remember those frozen prayer flags? When we came back down from Tawang on the Sela Pass all that snow and ice had melted down. It was still damn cold though!

A photo posted by Hippie In Heels (@hippieinheelsblog) on

MI Note 3 Review

Whenever people see my photos on Instagram, they think I use a DSLR to take them. I say no it’s this Chinese phone called the MI! So, as background this is kind of ground-breaking over in Asia and is only sold in India and China. They go on sale sometimes online and I’ll upgrade to the newest phone. The way it’s been explained to me, this guy who owns MI, gets different parts of the phone from suppliers who make iPhones and Sony phones. The camera is meant to be better than the Sony.

I started with the MI Redmi which isn’t available anymore and Ben had the MI 3. I then upgraded after 1 year to the MI Note 3, although the Redmi still worked fine. Now Ben has newest the MI 4. We also have the headphones and the portable chargers made by MI and both are great.

I’m not going to go into specifics with numbers and specs of the phone, because I’m not really a techy geek but just want to give a once over about this phone!

  • They cost between 7k Rs. to 12k Rs. which is around $100 to $180 USD. For an amazing phone it’s pretty unbeatable. You can buy on
Amazon and Flipkart.
  • The camera is amazing.
  • The phone has a SIM card slot (some in America don’t).
  • SD card slot for extra space, which the iPhone doesn’t allow.
  • You can set themes and one is iOs so it can look like an iPhone if you want it to.
  • It does go kind of slow sometimes if apps like Spotify are running.
  • The HDR sometimes spins for a while before snapping the photo.
  • The battery lasts all day even with music playing.
  • MI Camera Review

    The main reason I love this phone and continue buying it is because the camera is great. I use the HDR usually and love it for portraits and landscapes. Although the specs are better than most of the high-end phones, a picture is worth a thousand words. So here are some examples and for more photos, follow me on Instagram.

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    adventure sports in Varkala

    What to expect on a Kerala houseboat in Alleppey

    What to expect on a Kerala houseboat in Alleppey

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    Less Touristy Than Munnar | Explore Chinnakanal Tea Fields kerala tea plantation

    fishing village kochi

    A Little Tunbridge Wells Guide

    A Little Tunbridge Wells Guide

    Schloss Laxenburg


    Xiaomi MI4 Camera Review

    Ben got the new MI4 and the new things on that camera is that films can be shoot in slow motion or in fast-forward speed, it has 4k video recording which is really good HD video, and you can take photos during video. Not camera related, but you can use this phone as a remote for TV and AC.


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    About the Author:

    Rachel Jones left a career in nursing and lived on the beaches of Goa, India for the five years. Now she lives in Mexico where she gives advice on the 40+ countries she’s visited in the last 10 years. She’s the author of two India travel e-books: Guide to India and Insider’s Guide to Goa. Her blog, Werkenntwen, like its name, is a contradiction combining off-beat adventurous places with glamorous and bespoke travel. Werkenntwen has been featured in ELLE, Marie Claire, Grazia, and Cosmopolitan magazines. She’s a writer for Bravo TV.


    1. Denise - Follow my footprints June 8, 2016 at 7:46 pm - Reply

      Love the post! Very sharp pics and beautiful sky’s! I agree: it is not about the most expensive camera, it is about seeing! Of course, good camara’s can do good work, but it still is the photographer who has to do it! Most of the pics on my blog are als taken by iPhone, a simple compact camera (a Canon IXUS of only 150 euros or something) and now recently I bought one which is a little more expensive (a Sony), but I still prefer the other two!

      • Rachel Jones June 9, 2016 at 12:05 pm - Reply

        Thanks Denise – I’m thinking about getting a camera this summer for wildlife photos when I need to zoom and for night time photos because that is where my phone fails a bit. Nice to know there’s another person doing blog pics with their phone! :)

    2. Kristin @ Camels & Chocolate June 10, 2016 at 11:55 pm - Reply

      I would love a phone that takes better pictures. I’ve never been impressed with my iPhone’s quality—they’re fine for social, but not great for blog resolution.

    3. Shawn Rosvold December 18, 2016 at 8:35 pm - Reply

      I have the Note 1. It’s my travel camera because it allows two SIM cards. Not to mention that it was dirt cheap, works well (unless you delete the wrong Chinese app), and takes pretty good pics as you have illustrated. I’m looking forward to using with my Skyroam in Panama and Peru in February.

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