MIUI, the interface used in Xiaomi’s devices, has become a significant player in the mobile world and has reached many users. MIUI, the interface beloved by Xiaomi users, has undergone a significant evolution over time. In this article, we will examine the historical journey and evolution of MIUI.
MIUI 1 – Redefining Android
August of 2010 marked a turning point in the world of smartphones. The Chinese software company Xiaomi, which was relatively new at the time, had started to grow rapidly. This company introduced a brand new Android interface called MIUI, which was set to revolutionize the mobile technology world. MIUI, short for “Me-You-I,” aimed to make users feel closer to their smartphones, more unique, and customizable.
Starting based on Android 2.1, MIUI was significantly different from the standard interfaces of that era. MIUI promised users more customization options, better power management, and smoother animations. However, when MIUI 1 was initially released, it was only available in China and had not yet entered the international market. Additionally, Xiaomi released some of the MIUI source code, a practice that continued until 2013.
Introduced in 2011, MIUI 2 stood out as an update aimed at enhancing the user experience. This version offered a more advanced user interface and smoother animations, making device usage more enjoyable. Additionally, MIUI’s availability was expanded, allowing it to be used on more devices, which helped Xiaomi broaden its user base. However, MIUI 2 was still based on Android 2.1, so it didn’t bring a major platform change. Users continued to use an older version of Android with this update.
MIUI 3 was released in 2012, following MIUI 2, and brought some changes to the table. MIUI 3 was based on Android 2.3.6 Gingerbread, which introduced some significant improvements on the Android platform. However, the user interface remained relatively similar to MIUI 2 until MIUI 5. One of the notable changes introduced with MIUI 3 was improved performance and better battery life, making Xiaomi devices more practical.
MIUI’s unique features were further refined with MIUI 4, continuing to enhance the user experience. Introduced in 2012, MIUI 4 was based on an interface built on Android 4.0, also known as Ice Cream Sandwich. This provided users with a range of new features and improvements brought by this version of the Android operating system. One of the changes that impressed many users was the introduction of new icons and a transparent status bar. This gave devices a more modern and stylish appearance. Additionally, significant steps were taken in terms of security. MIUI 4 included an antivirus program, allowing users to better protect their devices.
Primarily designed for China, MIUI 5 brought some bad news for Chinese users. In 2013, Xiaomi introduced MIUI 5 and removed Google Play Store and other Google apps from the Chinese variant of MIUI. However, these could still be unofficially installed on devices. Apart from this, this update brought Android 4.1 Jellybean and a new user interface. This version of MIUI was maintained for a year until it received Android Kitkat. This update also led Xiaomi to release the source code for several components of MIUI to comply with the GPL License.
MIUI 6 – Visually Stunning, Stunningly Simple
MIUI 6, introduced in 2014, stands out as an update that combines Xiaomi’s user interface innovations with the advantages brought by Android 5.0 Lollipop. This version introduced in 2014 offered a visually satisfying change by updating the user’s visual experience with more modern icons and a new wallpaper. However, the reduced support for devices running older Android versions makes this update inaccessible to some users.
MIUI 7 – Yours by Design
MIUI 7, introduced in 2015, is highlighted as an update that didn’t bring significant changes to Xiaomi’s user interface but offered Android 6.0 Marshmallow. With MIUI 7, introduced in 2015, particularly the topic of bootloader locking became more strict. The user interface and themes remained the same until MIUI 9. This update stands out for the decision to cut support for older devices.
MIUI 8 – Simply Your Life
MIUI 8, introduced in 2016, was a significant update that brought Xiaomi users the enhancements brought by Android 7.0 Nougat. This version introduced useful features like Dual Apps and Second Space, along with some fine-tuning in the user interface and updates to system apps, aiming to improve the user experience. MIUI 8 aimed to provide Xiaomi device owners with a better operating system experience by combining the features of Android 7.0 Nougat.
MIUI 9 – Lightning Fast
MIUI 9, introduced in 2017, offered users a richer experience by bringing Android 8.1 Oreo and a range of significant new features. Features like split screen, improved notifications, an app vault, a new silent mode, and new shortcuts for buttons and gestures enabled users to operate their devices more efficiently and user-friendly. Additionally, the facial unlock feature enhanced security while providing faster access to devices. MIUI 9 aimed to provide Xiaomi users with an up-to-date operating system experience.
MIUI 10 – Faster than Lightning
MIUI 10 came with new features and was based on Android 9 (Pie). It offered users a range of innovations such as new notifications, an extended notification shade, a redesigned recent apps screen, and updated clock, calendar, and notes apps. It also enhanced Xiaomi integration for a smoother user experience. However, with this update released in 2018, support for devices using Lollipop and older Android versions was discontinued. MIUI 10 aimed to provide Xiaomi users with a more modern and functional operating system experience.
MIUI 11 – Empowering the Productive
MIUI 11, despite optimization and battery performance issues faced by users, was a significant update. Xiaomi made efforts to address these issues with security updates, but some problems were not resolved until MIUI 12.5. This update introduced useful features such as dark mode scheduling, system-wide dark mode, and ultra power-saving mode. It also brought improvements like a new calculator and notes app, updated icons, smoother animations, and the option to disable ads. However, with MIUI 11 released in 2019, support for devices running Marshmallow and older Android versions was discontinued.
MIUI 12 – Yours Alone
MIUI 12 was introduced as one of Xiaomi’s major updates, but it received mixed reactions from users. This update, released in 2020, brought a range of new features and improvements but also introduced new issues like battery problems, performance issues, and interface glitches. MIUI 12 was based on Android 10 and came with features such as Dark Mode 2.0, new animations, customized icons, and privacy-focused enhancements. However, due to the problems reported by users after the update, it was considered a controversial one.
Here are all the innovations that came with MIUI 12:
- Dark Mode 2.0
- New gestures and animations
- New icons
- New notification shade
- Automatic responses for calls
- Super Wallpapers
- App drawer for the first time
- More privacy-focused features
- One-time permissions for contacts, etc., in third-party apps
- Floating windows added
- Ultra battery saver added for global version
- Added Lite Mode
- Video toolbox added
- New fingerprint animations for in-display fingerprint sensors
- New camera and gallery filters
- Redesigned app switcher
MIUI 12.5 – Yours Alone
MIUI 12.5 was introduced after MIUI 12 in the last quarter of 2020. It aimed to provide users with a more optimized and seamless experience while building upon the foundation of MIUI 12. This version was based on Android 11 and brought redesigned notifications with nature sounds, smoother animations, improved app folders, and a new vertical layout for recent apps. Additionally, it introduced new features like the ability to measure heart rate. However, it’s worth noting that MIUI 12.5 discontinued support for devices running Android Pie and older versions. This update was designed to offer Xiaomi users an enhanced user experience.
MIUI 12.5+ Enhanced – Yours Alone
MIUI 12.5 Enhanced Edition, aimed at resolving issues within MIUI and improving system performance. This not only extended the device’s lifespan but also reduced power consumption, resulting in around a 15% performance boost. Such smart and user-friendly features in MIUI 12.5 Enhanced Edition reflected Xiaomi’s goal of providing its users with a longer-lasting and more efficient smartphone experience. This update helped users better understand and optimize their devices, promising significant gains in battery life and performance.
MIUI 13 – Connect Everything
MIUI 13 was released in 2021, based on Android 12, and introduced a range of new features. However, this update came with some issues. Among the innovations brought by MIUI 13 were minor changes in the user interface, new widgets, a new one-handed mode from Android 12, and a redesigned app drawer. Additionally, there were visual improvements such as the new Mi Sans font and a redesigned Control Center. However, MIUI 13 dropped support for devices running Android 10 and below, limiting access to these new features for some users. MIUI 13 aimed to provide Xiaomi users with the updates from Android 12.
MIUI 14 – Ready, Steady, Live
MIUI 14 is a version of MIUI introduced in 2022, based on Android 13. While MIUI 15 is expected to be released, as of now, MIUI 14 is the latest version available. MIUI 14 introduces a range of new features and improvements. These include changes to app icons, new Pet Widgets and Folders, the new MIUI Photon Engine for enhanced performance, and a feature that allows you to copy text from photos.
Additionally, it includes features such as live captions for video calls, updated Xiaomi Magic, and expanded family service support. MIUI 14 also takes up less storage space compared to previous versions, providing users with storage advantages. However, it will not support devices running Android 11 or older versions.
MIUI has undergone numerous changes and innovations from 2010 to the present. It continues to evolve, although further optimization and power management improvements are still needed. Xiaomi is actively working on these issues and constantly narrowing the gap with its competitors. Therefore, we look forward to MIUI 15 being even more optimized in the near future.