[Review] Xiaomi Redmi Note

A few days ago, I shared the first impressions I had of the Xiaomi Redmi Note. After that, I also wrote a tutorial on how to root and unroot this device. In this post, I am going to share the detailed review of this awesome smartphone by a Chinese OEM.

Xiaomi Redmi Note

Xiaomi Redmi Note box contents

The box contains the handset with its display covered, a travel adapter, a 3100 mAh battery, a USB cable for charging and data syncing, a user manual and a warranty card. There are no earphones in the box. (I do not understand why OEMs opt not to go for a pair of earpiece. This can well be a reason for somebody choosing another device over this one.)

Xiaomi Redmi Note build and design

Xiaomi Redmi Note features a glossy white plastic back with rounded edges

The device features a glossy white plastic back, which is disappointingly capable of carrying fingerprint smudges. The front is plain, with a black glass surrounded by slightly raised black plastic edging. To an extent, the front also attracts fingerprint smudges.

The device is big and heavy (199 g) to comfortably hold in a single hand. The rounded edges are a relief though - making the grip easier.

The two regular SIM card slots and the microSD slot can be accessed only after removing the battery. Removing the back cover is not so easy - I struggled for a couple of minutes before figuring it out! One needs to pull from the microUSB cut in the back cover in order to remove it. (Do not worry, it is diagrammatically explained in the user manual.)

Xiaomi Redmi Note features

In terms of specifications, the device features an IPS display with a resolution of 1280x720 pixels. It is powered by 1.7 GHz Mediatek 6592 octa-core processor coupled with ARM Mali-450 GPU, 2 GB RAM, 8 GB internal flash memory (expandable up to 32 GB). It comes with a 5.5 inch screen, protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3. The internal storage is 8 GB. It runs on Android 4.2 with Xiaomi's skin, The MIUI, and packs 3,100 mAh high-capacity lithium-polymer battery. It also features a 13 MP camera, along with a 5 MP front-camera which is good enough for taking selfies.

The smartphone supports direction, acceleration, light, e-compass, proximity, gyro, linear acceleration, and rotation vector sensors. It does not support temperature, pressure, ambient temperature, and relative humidity sensors.

Xiaomi Redmi Note software

The device runs on Android 4.2 (Jelly Bean) with Xiaomi's skin - the MIUI.

The in-built Security app

Talking about the pre-installed applications, the Security app caught my eye. It offers a lot of useful features viz. Cleaner, Data Usage, Blocklist, Power, Virus Scan and Permission. The Cleaner feature scans the device for junk files and deletes them. It also helps to clear the cache for boosting the device performance. The Data Usage feature tracks the data used over GSM.

Another pre-installed app is the MiTalk. It is yet another instant messenger (IM), with the added feature of audio and video calls. Then there is the Mi Cloud. It allows to backup the device's data on Xiaomi's cloud servers (storage limit 10 GB). The Report Bug application allows the users to report any unexpected behavior directly to the development team.

Themes app

Another awesome feature of the software on this device is the support of themes. There is a separate Themes app to manage the themes that can be downloaded and applied to the device. There are a lot of themes available for free. Only thing is that the user will have to necessarily signup with a Mi account before downloading and using any theme.

Lite Mode in action

Another great feature is the Lite Mode. When set in this mode, only the basic apps such as Contacts, Phone, Message, etc. appear on the screen. The icons of these apps are quite large. The rest of the apps are clubbed together and appear under a single icon.

Add a contact to use as a speed dial in Lite Mode

Moreover, one or more contacts can be directly added to the home screen, and can be used as speed dials. This feature is made keeping those people in mind who are not tech-savvy but still want to use this device.

There is also a Guest Mode option. In case the owner wants to hand over the device to another person, he/she can enable this option before doing so. This will prevent the guest user to access your private data such as messages, images, videos, etc.

Xiaomi Redmi Note performance and benchmarks

The device is smooth in performance, many thanks to its octa-core processor. No sluggishness was observed at my end, even while multitasking frequently. But, if used heavily, slight lag was observed from time-to-time. The touch is responsive.

Xiaomi Redmi Note stability result

AnTuTu rating: 30873
CPU: Good; supports large apps and multitasking
RAM: Excellent
2D graphics: Excellent
3D graphics: Excellent; fluently supports large mobile games.

General performance: Rather high (surpasses 95% other devices)
Game performance: High (surpasses 60% other devices)
Battery performance: Average (surpasses 50% other devices)

Xiaomi Redmi Note supports 10 finger multi-touch

The device supports 10 finger multi-touch, i.e., the touchscreen can detect (and act at) ten touches at any instance in time.

Xiaomi Redmi Note display

The device features an IPS display with a resolution of 1280x720 pixels. It comes with a 5.5 inch screen, protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3. The display is bright enough, and offers a decent contrast. The viewing angles are good, and outdoor stability is also decent.

Xiaomi Redmi Note camera

The smartphone features a 13 MP rear camera, along with a 5 MP front-camera which is good enough for taking selfies. The autofocus speed is impressive. The camera lacks optical image stabilization. But, given the price, that is something I won't complain about. In broad daylight, images are of really good quality. Although, in low-light, the images fail to capture adequate amount of detail due to the absence of backside-illuminated sensor.

Find below a few sample images clicked using this device's camera:

Xiaomi Redmi Note camera sample 1

Xiaomi Redmi Note camera sample 2

Xiaomi Redmi Note camera sample 3

Xiaomi Redmi Note camera sample 4

Xiaomi Redmi Note camera sample 5

Xiaomi Redmi Note battery life

The device packs 3,100 mAh high-capacity lithium-polymer battery, which is long lasting. It easily lasts for a whole day. One noticeable thing is that the battery gets heated up on a longer usage, and the same can be felt on the rear side of the smartphone just beneath the camera and the flash.

Why you should buy it?

1. Value for money.

2. Splendid camera.

3. Good battery life.

4. Great display.

Why you shouldn't buy it?

1. The box doesn't contain earphones.

2. Heavy.

3. Glossy back cover.

Xiaomi Redmi Note verdict

The device appears huge when held in a hand, and is heavy as well, hence not suitable for females. Other than that, it is definitely a value for the money you will spend owning this beast.

Xiaomi Redmi Note specifications

Operating System: Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean)

Processor: 1.7 GHz octa- core

Memory: 2 GB RAM

Storage: 8 GB internal (expandable up to 32 GB)

Display: 5.5 inch IPS

Resolution (pixels): 1280x720

Primary camera: 13 megapixel

Secondary camera: 5 megapixel

Interface: GPRS, EDGE, 3G, WiFi, microUSB, Bluetooth, 3.5 mm jack

Battery: 3,100 mAh lithium-polymer

Dimensions (WidthxHeightxDepth): 78.7x154x9.45 mm

Weight: 199 g

Rating: 4.2 out of 5 stars

Price: Get a price on the Xiaomi Redmi Note.

Xiaomi Redmi Note recommended accessories

Mi 10400 mAh power bank

Mi in-ear headphones

Mi flip cover

Mi back cover

Xiaomi Redmi Note
Reviewed by Garg Ankit Rating: 4.2