If you too have been convinced by the goodness and performance of a Xiaomi smartphone and its operating system, in this guide we will show you all the special functions and tricks of MIUI on Xiaomi, so as to be able to take advantage of the operating system at 360 degrees, customizing it according to our needs and our daily habits.
- Install new themes
- Special functions for the display
- Pull down the notifications curtain
- Move or remove many apps at the same time
- Customize the top bar (status bar)
- Unlock the phone with your face
- Make a screenshot of the phone screen
- Clone apps
- Password protect apps
- Quick access to app settings
- Check the phone volumes separately
- Set do not disturb mode at specific times
- How to activate the fastest animations
- Switch the phone off and on automatically
Many of the functions described below will not have escaped the most attentive users, but there are also little known tricks to optimize the user experience of a Xiaomi, valid for novice users but also for experienced users who use Xiaomi from years.
The launcher integrated into MIUI is very nice, but we can make it really perfect by installing one of the themes made available to Xiami, so as to customize the background, icons and lock screen in one go. To install new themes just press on the app Temi, present by default on all Xiaomi smartphones, and choose your favorite theme from the list.
If the Themes app doesn't work, we can always install a alternative launcher and install one of the icon set downloadable from the Play Store or one of the free wallpapers in HD.
MIUI offers special functions to make the most of any display, increasing productivity and usability in the most hectic situations. To access these features, let's open the app Settings and let's get to the menu Display to access special functions.
For example, we can activate the reading mode (useful for less eye strain when reading), change the size of the text, enable the Double tap to activate the screen (double tap on the screen to wake it up from the lock screen) or enable the Lift to activate (iPhone style: when the screen is locked, just lift the phone to immediately see the lock screen). To customize the text and screen rendering, we can also use the items in the section Contrast and colors.
To read the notifications received, we do not necessarily have to lower the top bar or one of the two upper corners down: to read the notifications and access the Quick Toogle simply swipe down from any point on the screen (when we are in one of the homescreens). In this way, we will avoid having to use two hands to scroll the drop-down menu on 6-inch or higher phones.
If we have to move or uninstall many apps at the same time, MIUI will allow us to do it without entering the menus and without moving the apps one by one. First we open the icon shift mode by making a two-finger pinch on one of the homescreens (with the two fingers starting from the edge and ending in the center): now just select the apps (a confirmation symbol will appear in the top corner a right of the apps) and drag them all together in one of the homescreens at the bottom; to uninstall them instead just press the button Uninstall at the top after selecting them.
The top bar (also called status bar) can also be customized on MIUI. Let's open the app Settings and let's take it to the menu this time Notifications and status bar. From here we can choose whether or not to show notification iconsis show the name of the operator at the top or just on the lock screen, if show the connection speed in real time, how to show the battery indicator (simple, with percentage or circle) and customize the notifications to be displayed in the bar (from the menu Application notifications).
With the latest versions of MIUI, the possibility of unlocking the phone with the face has been included, exactly as it happens on the latest generation iPhones (Face ID); to get this type of unlock we open the app Settings, we press on the menu Lock screen and password then we tap on Add face data. We will be asked for the security password of the device and, after a few seconds, the front camera will be activated for image capture. At the end of the operation we will be able to unlock the phone by bringing it to face height and waiting for the front camera to recognize our face (for safety, we recommend that you always leave the unlock with your fingerprints and the security code active).
To take a screenshot of the currently active screen or app, we can follow three different paths:
- perform a three-finger swipe from the top to the bottom of the screen;
- press the buttons at the same time Power e Volume down for 2 seconds;
- expand the top status bar, expand Quick Toogle and press Screenshot.
One of the most innovative functions present on Xiaomi is the cloning of apps, which allows us to have two identical apps installed on the same phone, so as to be able to manage a double account (for example we can have two separate WhatsApps or two Facebooks with two different accounts) . To clone the apps we open the Settings and press on the item Cloned apps. In the list of apps that will open, we activate cloning on the ones we intend to use; in a few seconds the app will be cloned and we will be able to use it separately from the main app, so as to manage two accounts on the same phone.
To protect our apps from prying eyes, just use the protection system present in MIUI. To activate the password on the apps, we open the Settings and let's get to the menu App block.
In the new screen that will open we choose which apps to protect with a password (some will already be selected), then press on Set your password to choose the password with which to protect the apps. From now on we will be able to access the locked apps only by entering the chosen password.
To check the notifications of an active app, to check the assigned permissions and to set energy saving quickly (without going through a thousand menus), just swipe from the bottom edge to the center of the screen and hold down for 2 seconds (to access to the active apps menu), press and hold on the preview of the app to be modified and finally press the gear button.
The app management page will open, where we can choose whether or not to view the notifications, whether to start the app automatically with the operating system and if we want bypass energy saving (useful for messaging apps and for apps that must always remain active in memory). From this menu we can also forcefully close the app, uninstall it, and clear the cache or data (or entrembi).
The volume keys allow you to change the ringer volume, the alarm volume or the multimedia volume according to what we are doing at that moment on the screen. To quickly change all the volumes of the smartphone, press one of the volume keys and tap on the three dots present under the volume bar (immediately below the bell): we will see the volume bars appear (multimedia, Ringtone e Alarm clocks). From this menu we can also activate the silent mode or Do not disturb.
The Do Not Disturb mode on MIUI allows you to silence calls and notifications with a single tap on the screen, so as to receive calls only from the numbers set as priority (an elderly or sick relative for example). This mode can be activated automatically in working hours or at night by taking us in Settingsby clicking on the menu Sounds and vibration, selecting the menu Silent / Do Not Disturb and finally pressing on Schedule the switch-on time.
In the screen that will appear, press Add at the bottom, choose a name for the rule and configure the schedule, choosing the days of the week and the time slot in which we do not want to be disturbed. At the end, press the tick symbol at the top right to confirm the rule: from now on, in the indicated time slot and on the set days, the phone will automatically activate Do Not Disturb mode.
MIUI is an Android-based operating system full of special effects and transitions, which can put cheaper Xiaomi phones in trouble (especially with many open apps). In this case we can improve the fluidity of the animations by taking us to the Settings menu -> Additional settings -> Developer options (we can unlock it by going to the System Info menu and pressing repeatedly on MIUI Version) and editing the entries Scale animation window, Transition animation scale e Animator duration scale, setting them all to .5x. In the same screen we can also activate the voice Force GPU rendering, leaving most of the graphics tasks to the phone's built-in video processor.
At the end of the changes we restart the phone and check if the fluidity of the system has improved; if the phone is still slow, we advise you to follow the advice given in our guide on how Optimize slow smartphone or old tablet.
One of the most effective tricks for holding one Android smartphone always fast and snappy consists of turn it off and on again at regular intervals, so as to clear the app and system cache as well as other small optimizations that can only be obtained with a restart (for example to prevent an app from remaining in memory). Instead of proceeding manually with this operation, we can set the MIUI so that perform the operation automatically at night, so as not to disturb our business during the day.
Let's open the app Settings, let's go to the Battery and performance -> Battery optimization path and finally tap on Schedule on / off. In the new screen we activate both items Switch-on time e Shutdown time, we choose a night time in which to restart (just set 1 or 2 minutes of difference between switch-off and switch-on) and the day of the week where to perform the operation (we recommend acting on a Friday or Monday).
With these settings we will now have a phone that restarts by itself at night on a specific day, so as to always maintain optimal performance.
In another article, like remove advertising from Xiaomi smartphones and disable ads on MIUI
Many of the Xiaomi on sale dominate the buying guides made on the site, as also seen in our guide to Best Chinese smartphones by price range. If we want to eliminate the system apps that accompany MIUI, we recommend that you visit our article on how Delete the Samsung, Huawei, Xiaomi and Android system apps.
If we are the first to use a Xiaomi smartphone or an Android smartphone in general, we recommend that you follow the tips in the guide on Things to do now on the new Android smartphone.
Best MIUI special features and tricks on Xiaomi