Xiaomi has unveiled its Mi5C, a cheaper version of the Xiaomi Mi5. It's the first phone to include the company's own chipset, and it goes on sale in China on 3 March. Here's everything you need to know about the Xiaomi Mi5C, including how to buy the Mi5C in the UK.

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When is the Xiaomi Mi5C release date? How to buy Xiaomi Mi5C in the UK

Xiaomi Mi5C release date: 3 March 2017 (China)

The Xiaomi Mi5C was announced on 28 February 2017 and went on sale in China on 3 March 2017.

It won't be officially available in the UK, but as always we'll be able to get hold of it through Chinese sites such as GearBest and Geekbuying. Also see: Guide to buying grey market tech and How to buy Xiaomi products in UK

Geekbuying is currently listing the Mi5c in black, gold and rose gold at £245.82. It offers free shipping to the UK, but bear in mind that when buying products from China you will likely be requested by customs to pay import duty, which is calculated at 20 percent of the value written on the shipping paperwork plus an admin fee of around £11.

How much does the Xiaomi Mi5C cost in the UK?

The Xiaomi Mi5C is cheaper than the 2,700 yuan Mi5 at 1,499 yuan. This converts to around £175, or $220. Expect to pay a little more than this from resellers, as with the phones not officially being available in the UK they usually command a slightly higher price. The current price at Geekbuying is £245.82.

The Xiaomi Mi5C will be available in black, gold and rose gold.

Xiaomi Mi5C

What are the features and specifications?

With its Mi5C Xiaomi joins Apple (A-series), Samsung (Exynos) and Huawei (Kirin) in producing its own SoC (system on a chip), which has been built on a 28nm process. This is a solution that combines the CPU, GPU, memory, USB controller, power management circuits and wireless radios. Xiaomi's SoC is also known as 'Pinecone', and has been manufactured in partnership with Leadcore. Making its debut here in the Xiaomi Mi5C we get the Surge S1 processor. Also see: Best Chinese phones

The Surge S1 is an octa-core 64-bit processor that combines four A53 cores running at 2.2GHz and four at 1.4GHz and integrates Mali-T860 graphics. There is also 3GB of LPDDR3 RAM (versus 4GB in the Mi5) and 64GB of storage.

The Mi5C is a cheaper version of the Xiaomi Mi5, with the same 5.15in full-HD (428ppi) JDI display and front fingerprint scanner, but a slim (7.09mm) metal unibody design that weighs just 132g. The slim bezels measure just 1.6mm.

Xiaomi Mi5C

Xiaomi says that having its own chipset allows it to better handle backlight optimisation, and the Mi5C has up to 2048 brightness adjustment levels. The resulting display offers 550 nits of brightness.

Surge also benefits the camera, a 12Mp, f/2.2 sensor with 1.25um pixels, down from 16Mp in the Mi5. The company says the Surge ISP algorithm enhances light sensitivity by up to 150 percent. You also get a 8Mp, f/2.0 selfie camera at the front.

The Mi5C supports fast charging at 9V/2A, but the battery capacity is slightly down on the Mi5 at 2860mAh versus 3000mAh.

Xiaomi Mi5C

Read next: Best new phones coming in 2017

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