Xiaomi rolls out a test build of the Android 12 Update for the Mi 11 and Redmi K40 series

Oct 7, 2021
Mobile Computing

Windows 11 isn't the only operating system that debuted this week, Android 12 was released to AOSP on Monday. Though unlike the desktop OS, the stable version of the mobile firmware isn't technically available for any devices yet.

Android 12 Update for Xiaomi devices

Even Pixel phones haven't gotten the update, though Google says it will release it in a few weeks. Xiaomi shared a message on Weibo, to announce that it has begun rolling out a test version of the official Android 12 Update for some of its devices, in China.

First Xiaomi and Redmi phones to get the Android 12 Update

The company's Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra, Mi 11 Pro, and Mi 11 are the first phones that will be updated to Android 12. All three handsets had participated in the Android 12 Beta program, so it is not really surprising that these phones are ahead of other devices in the list. Xiaomi's subsidiary, Redmi, is also bringing the new OS to its flagships namely, the Redmi K40 Pro and the Redmi K40 Pro Plus. According to the announcement, users who participated in the beta program for Android 12 can directly update to the stable version. That's pretty impressive, especially considering that Xiaomi has been criticized in the past for its slow updates.

Android 12 Update for Redmi phones

An ETA for the release of the stable version has not yet been announced, typically it takes a few weeks or a month for the testing process to be completed. After it has been made certain that the software is devoid of major bugs, the OS is pushed to the stable channel in phases. It is worth mentioning that these are the Chinese variants of the devices which will get the Android 12 Update first, once that is out of the way, Xiaomi is likely to bring its software to global variants.

There are a couple of notable absentees in that list, the Xiaomi Mi 11X Pro and the Mi 11i. As noted by GSMArena, these devices which were also a part of the beta program, are rebranded variants of the Redmi K40 Pro, so the global versions of the phones are very likely to get the update in the future. Don't worry if your device is not among the list of eligible phones that will get the Android 12 Update. It's still very early to tell which handsets are in the company's roadmap, so please wait for the official word regarding that.

Speaking of which, Xiaomi is also pushing MIUI 12.5 Enhanced Edition (based on Android 11) for its devices, including the Xiaomi 11 series. The custom firmware brings some performance related features to improve the longevity of the phones.

Other OEMs have started outlining plans for updating their devices to the latest iteration of the mobile operating system. Samsung is currently working on the 2nd beta version of One UI 4, OnePlus and Oppo are testing their new mash up of ColorOS + OxygenOS, and Realme is set to introduce Realme UI 3.0 next week.

Google is set to announce the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro on October 19th, and will host the Android Developer Summit 2021 from October 27th to 28th. Word on the internet is that we can expect to hear about the official Android 12 roll out for the Pixel phones during the event, and perhaps an announcement about Android 12.1 too.

The Mi 11 and Redmi K40 series are the first of Xiaomi's devices to get the Android 12 Update
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The Mi 11 and Redmi K40 series are the first of Xiaomi's devices to get the Android 12 Update
Xiaomi is preparing to release the Android 12 Update for the Mi 11 and Redmi K40 series. A test build of the official release is currently available for early adopters.
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  1. boris said on October 8, 2021 at 1:34 am

    Why would anybody, except for developers, not just wait for final version of Android 12. Android OS changes are mostly incremental. There is absolutely no reason to rush.

  2. Shiva said on October 7, 2021 at 5:47 pm

    I just bought the first smartphone (a Xiaomi model). Now I understand why people always have their cell phones in hand: they are still configuring the settings.
    Windows 10 was not enough, now another OS to increase the headache. MIUI hidden features, bloatware, permissions, USB debugging, … I welcome myself to the realm of smartphone’s functional illiteracy.

    1. Dumbledalf said on October 8, 2021 at 7:40 am

      My last and current phone is Nokia 3.1 Plus and it’s really nice aside from two minor issues:

      1. I got it with Android 8, it updated to Android 9 and later to Android 10, but it will not get any more updates aside from Google security updates.
      2. The back of the phone is aluminum and I don’t know if that was the cause, but at one point, I discovered my phone slightly bent when I put it face down with no case and all 4 corners could not touch the table’s surface. I’ve also been watching movies, series, playing games and whatnot on it when in bed and many times I’ve found myself waking up and the phone under me so maybe that caused it. But either way next time I’m getting a phone with a plastic back.

      The negatives aside, here are the positives:

      1. It runs Android One, which is almost vanilla Android and gets updates more often that other devices, even as mine is already not supported for new Android versions, Google still sends security updates, which is good.
      2. The phone is rather fast and runs games well, but I make it even faster with a few apps – Avira Antivirus (which comes with a Performance Booster tool), Droid Optimizer and SD Maid and the phone is lightning fast, only requires some maintenance every 1-2 months and you can never tell it apart from an iPhone speed-wise.

      I would not get Xiaomi, because it’s probably bundled with some Chinese surveillance stuff on it, but for my future phone, I will get one of the following:

      – Sony (very beautiful phones, don’t have ugly notches or punch holes)
      – Nokia again (my first Nokia Android phone was and still is a very good experience so I am likely to get a new one in the future)
      – Samsung (while I’m not very fond of their visual design or how their Android is modified UI-wise, at least it’s not Chinese)

      1. Shiva said on October 8, 2021 at 1:57 pm

        It’s a new ecosystem I’m not used to. 51 apps that cannot be uninstalled through the normal menu. The theme manager also asks for a data collection (a black background is enough for me).
        Now I installed XiaomiAPFastBoot, but I saw there are also some apps like ‘Hidden Settings for Miui’ And ‘Miui Hidden Libs’ or the website adb.miuies.com. After some cleaning it will be the turn to look for few useful and non-invasive apps for:
        – passwords
        – browser
        – document viewer (office, pdf, video, image)
        – emails (maybe)

        I don’t even know if I need an antivirus. I have no particular connection needs, at most rarely for maps or emails. I have no starting points, but the objectives are: to connect only when necessary, a minimum of preserved privacy and only essential functions for the smartphone. MyPhoneExplorer as phone management if I choosed well.

        At first I took a look at the Nokia models, my perception that they seem more expensive than the competition, but I really don’t know about this stuff.

      2. Yash said on October 8, 2021 at 3:13 pm

        Android System Webview, Google Play Services, Google Drive, Google Photos, Google Maps, Google Play Games – these are the Google apps you need. First two so all apps can work fine. Next two if you use Google account for sharing assuming you have one and next two for Cab Apps and Games. That’s the quota for Google Apps filled, every other Google app can be uninstalled or disabled.

        In OEM apps only Xiaomi remote app is useful and even then there might be a better app in F-Droid app to replace it. All the other apps from Alarm to Music – every single one of OEM app can be replaced, bar Settings obviously. Most of the replacements can be found on F-Droid, and remaining on Aurora Store.

        ) Password – Bitwarden(online syncing), Keepass(offline)
        ) Browser -Bromite if you use Chromium, otherwise Fennec(F-Droid) or Iceraven(has DRM support)
        ) Document Viewer – F-Droid is your friend. I won’t name one but there are many capable on F-Droid
        ) Emails – Fairemail or K-9Mail if you have Gmail account otherwise any other service.

        Launcher – Nova
        Keyboard – any with no internet connection permission

        No antivirus necessary unless you download stuff from Tor.

      3. Shiva said on October 8, 2021 at 7:16 pm

        Thanks. I just Added F-Droid and AuroraOSS to my ContextSearch extension as search engines.
        Right now no Google account, no Xiaomi account, no sharing, no cloud (only synchronization with the desktop maybe except Bitwarden), no games.

        For what I see surely Bitwarden or KeePass, I already use the last one on PC. FairEMail seems like a good choice and I will try it. I also take the hints for Bromite, Fennec and Iceraven (Brave and DuckDuckGo Privacy Browser?). I will see for document viewers on F-Droid (if I understand I have to install F-Droid client for simplify the updates together).

        Be left Android System Webview, Google Play Services, Google Maps (it’s enough Gallery App for photos) and Nova Launcher if it doesn’t ask me any data (I didn’t even know that this category existed).

        ‘Google Assistant’ is closely connected with Chrome I suppose? Its a pity. Only one application remains for DNS; on the deskop I use AcrylicDNSProxy (using its hosts file with some lists) coupled with DNSCrypt proxy. I also read from T.H. about DeCloudUs DNS, however I will see.

      4. Yash said on October 9, 2021 at 8:32 am

        1. “Right now no Google account, no Xiaomi account, no sharing, no cloud (only synchronization with the desktop maybe except Bitwarden), no games.”

        2. “Brave and DuckDuckGo Privacy Browser?”

        3. “if I understand I have to install F-Droid client for simplify the updates together”

        4. “Gallery App for photos”

        5. “Nova Launcher if it doesn’t ask me any data”

        6. “‘Google Assistant’ is closely connected with Chrome I suppose? Its a pity.”

        1. With the setup you mentioned, ideally LineageOS with few Google apps would be good. But then its another different thing.

        2. DuckDuckGo Privacy Browser is front end for System Webview, not a complete browser and certainly not better than other good browsers unless site score feature is a must – trash feature if you ask me.
        Brave – If you use Brave rewards, go for it. Otherwise Bromite is better.

        3. Yep, no big deal. Easy and works better than even Aurora Store. Plus Bitwarden can also be installed through F-Droid, same with Bromite, Newpipe – just add their custom repo.

        4. That’s an OEM app. Simple Gallery, F-Droid or Aurora Store, is better.

        5. Good app to refresh a thing or two on home screen, app drawer. Other alternatives exist on F-Droid.

        6. Not just Chrome, include other Google Apps as well. Plus it get activated automatically sometimes, huge privacy hole.

        I’m not aware of fully functional software to make custom DNS provider work on Android as good as Desktop, however Blokada, Adaway is a good place to start finding.

      5. Shiva said on October 9, 2021 at 2:59 pm

        No. I may have spoken too soon about Google or Xiaomi accounts…

        1) I have a MIUI Global and If I want to chanche ROM (es. Xiaomi.eu) I probably need a Xiaomi account for some steps. However It’s not the case of my model and I only need to use XiaomiADBFastbootTools to uninstall or disable apps. Solved.

        2) I’m so unprepared that I even didn’t know that I need an account to install Apps from Google Play. In this context, choosing GP instead of others (es. APK) is a matter of security, I suppose.

        Thanks for the clarification about the apps above. I’ll try both Bromite and Iceraven. There is LibreOffice app as well for documents and for the rest I need to catch up!

        For a moment I felt I little bit envious to whom doesn’t care about alternatives.

      6. Yash said on October 9, 2021 at 5:26 pm

        F-Droid apps are the best, and certainly have no issues in terms of security, privacy. Aurora Store is Play Store client. For the most part those two can do everything without an account.

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