Xiaomi’s Redmi Note smartphones usually provide very good value for money, and the same remains true for the new Redmi Note 5 – even more so, in fact. It’s one of the first smartphones to ship with Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 636 chipset, and it also eclipses other mid-range smartphones in several key areas.
So, here are five reasons why the Redmi Note 5 will be the mid-range smartphone to beat.
Powerful Camera with AI
Mid-range smartphones usually have average camera performance, but this isn’t the case with the Redmi Note 5. Its dual-camera system, for one, is made up of a 12MP f/1.9 sensor and a 5MP secondary shooter to capture depth information. Both of these sensors work in tandem to deliver convincing bokeh effects.
What’s particularly important to note here is in the pixel size of the Redmi Note 5’s 12MP sensor. At 1.4μm, it is 20% larger than the Redmi Note 4’s primary shooter (1.12μm). This is important because a larger pixel is able to absorb more light, which in turn enables the sensor to perform better in low-light conditions.
On top of that, the dual-camera system also has dual photodiode autofocus, which promises very fast autofocus speeds. Basically, every single pixel of the 12MP primary sensor is split into two photodiodes for a total of 24 million, which are used for phase detection. This, in turn, allows for faster focus lock and better accuracy.
If you’re into selfies, the Redmi Note 5 packs a punch as well. The 13MP front-facing camera is supported by Xiaomi’s AI-powered Beautify 4.0 algorithm, which works almost seamlessly to subtly enhance selfies. Beautify 4.0 also promises to mimic 12 different makeup steps to create beautiful, flawless skin texture in selfies. Finally, the Soft Selfie-light, coupled with Beautify 4.0, allows the Redmi Note 5 to produce great selfie shots even in low-light conditions.
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 is the first Redmi device to offer AI-assisted Portrait Mode features, and works even in the selfie camera. Finally, the selfie camera can also be used for the quick and seamless Face Unlock feature.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 chipset powering the Redmi Note 5 features the very same Kryo 260 cores found in the higher-end Snapdragon 660 SoC. While the latter features a higher clock speed, the Snapdragon 636 should still provide very respectable performance, especially for its price range.
On top of that, the lower clock speed also hands the Redmi Note 5 another key advantage: battery life.
Long Battery Life
With a large 4,000mAh battery coupled with the efficient Snapdragon 636 chipset, the Redmi Note 5 will almost certainly offer very good battery life. After all, most Redmi Note devices have always delivered excellent battery life. Take the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4, for example – we managed to get well over eight hours of screen on time with the device in our review.
In fact, a lot of hardware choices are carefully considered to offer the best possible battery life for the device. Besides the processor and battery, the phone’s 1080p display also provides a great balance between a sharp display and long battery life.
Design isn’t exactly the Redmi Note phones’ strong point, but the Redmi Note 5 is certainly the sleekest-looking device in the series. This is mostly thanks to its 5.99-inch 18:9 Full HD+ display with minimal top and bottom bezels, giving it a modern aesthetic.
The Redmi Note 5’s metal back is also quite minimalist, and it feels great in the hands. While I’m not a fan of pink smartphones, the Rose Gold model looks pretty good in person – there’s also the unique Lake Blue colourway.
Excellent Value for Money
Without a doubt, this is one area Xiaomi devices excel in, and it is especially true for Redmi Note devices. In China, the Redmi Note 5 retails from only 1,099 Chinese yuan – that comes up to about RM680. Of course, we don’t expect the phone to retail at this exact price point in Malaysia, but we’re pretty confident Xiaomi will price the Redmi Note 5 very competitively here.
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 is the most impressive Redmi Note device yet, and it offers features never seen in the series before. It has a very promising camera, large battery capacity, sleek design, and most importantly, exceptional value for money.
Set to be launched here in Malaysia on 24 April, we cannot wait to see how much Xiaomi will price the Redmi Note 5 for our market.
Disclosure: this article was sponsored by Xiaomi Malaysia.