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Packing what could be the best camera package so far in 2024, the Xiaomi 14 and 14 Ultra have been shown to take images of outstanding quality since their launch at MWC earlier this year. Powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset and sporting an appealing design, there is much to appreciate about Xiaomi’s 14 and 14 Ultra, however early adopters are reporting issues with the camera housing that is fogging up and causing problems.

It’s Getting Foggy

According to a range of posts on Reddit, the Xiaomi 14 and 14 Ultra lenses fog up which causes images to appear ‘somewhat cloudy’ even if it’s a sunny day. As you can see from the image above, a fair amount of condensation is shown in the camera lenses.

Xiaomi's 14 and 14 Ultra Reportedly Have Foggy Lens Issues 6
Image: Amazon

Reviews on Amazon UK were equally concerning, with buyers initially awarding the phone five stars before updating their posts with complaints of foggy lenses.

Some Xiaomi 14 and 14 Ultra owners have resorted to measures such as removing the SIM tray and recording video in 8K resolution to heat the lenses and dispel the vapor via the opening, with mixed results. It’s worked for some and not for others. There seems to be something in common among the instances in that it seems to afflict phones being used in Europe and not in Asia where few similar issues have been reported.

What Does Xiaomi Say?

Xiaomi's 14 and 14 Ultra Reportedly Have Foggy Lens Issues 7
Image: Xiaomi

For its part, Xiaomi denies that there is an issue, instead claiming that it’s a ‘natural phenomenon’ and not a problem with the hardware. In a statement issued to Android Central, Xiaomi expanded upon this:

“Xiaomi 14 Series are tested in our labs to deliver dust ingress and water spray protection.”

“We reassure it is not a product quality issue. Instead, it is a natural phenomenon to encounter camera lens fog-up due to temperature differences between the lens and the surrounding air under some specific user environment. This is more common in situations where ambient temperature switches rapidly from high temperature to low temperature, long exposure to high temperature with high humidity, or water damage.”

As for what to do if your Xiaomi 14 or 14 Ultra camera lenses fog up, the brand gave the following advice:

“If you experience lens fog, we recommend you leave your device in a dry area with airflow to help alleviate moisture.”

Those experiencing the foggy issue are choosing to either ask for a refund (which is easily done if the phone is purchased on Amazon) or are being given replacements by Xiaomi once the device has been inspected at its service center which isn’t as quick a process.

The shame of it is, that almost everyone posting about the issue states that the phone, and camera in particular, are excellent and that the fogged-up lenses are the only reason for complaint.

What Should You Do?

I would either return it to Xiaomi or Amazon to get replaced if you really like the Xiaomi 14 or 14 Ultra or get a refund and buy something else entirely. Whichever option you choose, make sure you do it before the cooling-off period runs out. In the meantime, hopefully, Xiaomi will do the right thing and acknowledge the issue before the 14T series is announced.

He’s been an Android fan ever since owning an HTC Hero, with the Dell Streak being his first phablet. He currently carries an Honor Magic 5 Pro in his pockets, a Xiaomi Pad 5 in his backpack, and thinks nothing of lugging a 17-inch laptop around the world. When not immersed in the world of Android and gadgets, he’s an avid sports fan, and like all South Africans, he loves a good Braai (BBQ).

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