Xiaomi Redmi 4, a budget device from the China-based smartphone manufacturer, will go on sale on Tuesday at 12pm IST via Amazon India and Mi.com. The smartphone will only be available in two variants on launch day-Matte Black and Elegant Gold colour variants.
The Xiaomi Redmi 4 price in India starts at Rs. 6,999 for the 2GB RAM/ 16GB storage variant.
The Redmi 4, a made in India smartphone, is the latest addition to Xiaomi’s entry-level Redmi series and succeeds the popular Xiaomi Redmi 3S and 3S Prime, which according to company, is the smartphone most sold in India online with 4 million sales within just 9 months.
The smartphones in Redmi series offer great features at affordable price tags. Each Redmi device offers a massive battery in a sleek and compact body. The Redmi 4 is no different and it carries the legacy forward by offering a very efficient 4,100mAh battery.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 Octa-core processor
4100mAh battery that can last for 2 days under regular usage
13MP PDAF (phase detection autofocus) camera, 5MP, f/2.0 front with Beautify mode
5-inch HD display
Metal body with fingerprint sensor. 2.5D curved glass
Dual SIM (3-choose-2 hybrid SIM tray)
LTE and VoLTE support
Three variants: 2GB RAM + 16GB Flash, 3GB + 32GB, and 4GB + 64GB
Up to 128GB microSD expandable storage
Available in Black and Gold colours
MIUI 8 based on Android 6.0
While the Redmi 4 weighs heavy in terms of specifications, we tested the device to check its capability to judge its worth and here are the observations:
Xiaomi Redmi 4 is a one of the best-looking budget-smartphones that we have seen. The smartphone take cues from its elder sibling – Redmi Note 4 – and the design similarities are striking. The smartphone is light, proportionate and easy to hold. The small stature metal built of the Redmi 4 is what we liked the most about the phone.
The front side of the device is dominated with a 5-inch HD display covered with 2.5D curved glass. There is no additional layer to protect the screen from unwanted scratches or to survive the accidental falls and therefore users are advised to use high quality tempered glass to protect the gorgeous curved screen.
There are three capacitive navigation keys below the display that work like a charm. The earpiece and sensors find its spot at the front top along with the front camera. The eject able hybrid dual-sim tray is placed at the left side of the device and it will require a pin to take it out. The volume rockers and power button are placed on the right side.
The 3.5mm headphone jack, along with infrared blaster and secondary microphone, is placed at the top and the bottom is covered with micro-USB port surrounded by 5-holes grill on each side with microphone in one and speaker in another.
The rear is rather bland with the primary camera placed at the top left along with LED flash and fingerprint scanner in the centre. What we appreciate about the design at the back is the new anodized antenna lines that certainly look like a clever addition to Redmi 4. Also, the rim around the camera is protruding but the lens is placed a little inside.
Overall, the device feels light and comfortable in the pocket and in the hand. You do not need both your hands to operate it. It fits right in one hand and features such as fingerprint scanner and notification bar are accessible with just one hand.
Display, Software and Performance
The Redmi 4 sports 5-inch HD display of 1280 x 720 pixels that offers 296 PPI. While the other smartphones are shifting to full-HD resolution, Xiaomi’s decision to stick to HD resolution makes sense as it reduces a lot of load from the processor and the same was quite evident while using the device. The display is bright, sharp and the curved glass above it makes it easy to use. The screen remains visible under direct sunlight and offers great contrast and saturation under all light conditions.
The smartphone boots Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow skinned under MIUI 8. Now that Android version ‘O’ is on its way and Nougat is widely popular, we expected the device to come with Android Nougat. Nevertheless, the Android Nougat preview is available for users who want to experience it and they will be updated to Nougat once the stable version rolls out.
Coming to the pros of software, the MIUI 8 looks clean and polished than previous versions of the skin. More than cosmetic, the new skin offers utility based features such as dual apps, quick ball, single-hand mode, child lock and scrolling screenshot. The dual apps feature comes handy for users who use multiple account to operate WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter etc. Single-hand feature shrinks the screen to one side and makes it convenient to operate the phone using just one-hand. Scrolling screenshot takes a long screenshot of the screen, thus eliminating the need to take multiple screenshots to share the entire content.
As such there are no cons but one thing that could have been addressed is the bloatware filled in the device. The smartphone comes with a lot of bloatware installed that could not be uninstalled and therefore continues to eat up the internal memory. While there are options to go for extra storage but for people purchasing the base model with 16GB of storage, the bloatware certainly is a negative
The Redmi 4 runs software and features without any hiccup. The smartphone is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 SoC with octa-core processor. While the processor is no powerhouse, it provides enough power to the device to operate without any glitch or lag. The HD screen helps in keeping less strain on the processor and therefore the processing power is used for other tasks. In regular use we did notice a little lag here and there but nothing major that could ruin the whole experience. The phone is not meant for running graphic intensive games like Asphalt 8. The game is playable but it makes the device sluggish and it also heats up the device.
The Redmi 4 features 13-megapixel rear camera assisted with phase detection auto-focus (PDAF) and LED flash. The camera is an improvement over its predecessor and is capable of clicking better shots. In day light, the camera works like a charm to shoot images with lots of details, greater sharpness and contrast. There are features such as HDR mode, manual mode and panorama that could be used to improve the imaging capabilities of the device. While the HDR works fine with a tripod, it slows down the post processing level and therefore require steady hands.
There is a 5 MP selfie camera that supports beautify mode. The selfie camera also requires steady hands to click good selfies. In day light, the camera works well but the quality takes a toll during low-light conditions.
The Redmi 4 is capable to record HD and full-HD videos with fine balance of colours and frames. In good light condition, the camera records decent clips but low-light ruins the whole essence.
The major attraction of the device is its mammoth 4,100 mAh battery that keeps the show running. The smartphone stays up for more than one day. We tested the device battery in three phases.
In first phase, we used the device normally and checked the battery usage. During normal use with light browsing, an hour of YouTube video, calls and WhatsApp messaging the device could stretch for 2 days straight.
In second phase, we used the device with heavy usage sans power intensive applications. With regular internet usage, long hours of YouTube playback, music on loud speaker, scrolling Instagram galleries etc. the phone managed to survive with one complete day with a battery of 12 per cent more to go.
In third phase, we used the device heavily with some serious power hungry apps and games and the result was impressive as the phone continued to run for 14 hours straight before asking for a refill.
The Redmi 4 is a capable smartphone with perfect screen size and resolution. With a price tag of Rs 6,999 for base model, the phone is worth every penny and is certainly the most beautiful smartphone in its category. It boasts of a processor equivalent to the one that powers Moto G5 and based on experience we could say the phone is far more smoother than Moto G5.