Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: Best Budget Smartphone?

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4, the successor of Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 has got immensive popularity over short interval of time. The company’s offers plethora of features at best price ever looking at successful launches such as Xiaomi Redmi 3s, 3s Prime & Redmi 4A. According to recent reports, Xiaomi is the most preferred brand of Indians.

The limited stock issue of Xiaomi is one of the biggest reason why people go with alternative at same price. We also faced issues while purchasing this smartphone, although we got it at offline store by paying extra money. This is one of the disappointing point we concluded about Xiaomi.

Coming back to Xiaomi Redmi Note 4, it is similar to its predecessor Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 in almost all aspects. Except the change in design, it has the same metal body, camera placement is same but overall it’s not all similar to its predecessor. Xiaomi unveiled this smartphone last year in China with a MediaTek Chipset but in India they have embedded a Qualcomm’s chip. The Redmi Note 4 is now one of the top-selling smartphone at present, and most preferred too. But the question is, Is it a Best Budget Smartphone? Let’s figure it out.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: Design & Display

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Design & Display

At the first glimpse, it doesn’t look that interesting but when it comes to hand it feels premium and design looks much better than Xiaomi Redmi Note 3. The placement of speaker in now at the bottom. The phone is protected with a 2.5D curved glass but its Gorilla or not isn’t clear. Corners of this phone are bit rounded and looks intelligent.

The body is of metal but Xiaomi has used plastic too on the top and bottom as well. The phone is doesn’t that slippery like Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 and also it fits perfect in your hand.

Talking about the one-handed usage of this phone, it is bit difficult to open notification panel from one hand but thanks to MIUI which is able to swipe up the panel without reaching the top of screen. One the back of the phone, you will get MI branding and some information. There will be also a sticker of warning on the rear side but you can peel of that easily. Antenna band are placed on the top and bottom.

On the back, Xiaomi has placed camera at top-middle of the phone and just below that there is a dual-tone LED flash. Right below the flash, there is a fingerprint scanner to unlock the device without taking the risk of remembering the password.

Taking a look at the top, it has a 3.5mm headphone jack but sadly Xiaomi doesn’t provide any headphone out of the box. There will be an infrared emittor (IR blaster) on the opposite of headphone slot. Also, there is a secondary noise cancellation microphone placed on the top. Moving on to the bottom, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 spikes USB type charging port in the middle and both sides of the port is in between the external speakers.

Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 4 sports a 5.5-Inch full-HD IPS (1080×1920 pixels) display with 2.5D curved glass protection having a pixel density of 501ppi. The display seems above average, the text & images appears sharp, viewing angles are good and the screen performs quite better even under sunlight. We did sunlight legibility test in under heavy temperature and heated the Redmi Note 4 a lot but the screen is easily accessible with eyes.

If your hands are small you can activate one – handed mode by just swipping on to the home button. Also, watching videos on the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 is just fun with the app given inside it after tweaking few settings. Coming to the rear design, we got confused once that which is Redmi Note 4, as both CoolPad Note 5 and Redmi Note 4 is placed at the same table.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Key Features & Full Specifications

Hence we have the Indian variant, obviously we are talking about that. The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 625 SoC which is an octa-core processor clocked at 2GHz coupled with Adreno 506 GPU.

Surprisingly, the smartphone fits in all budget. As it has three variants depending upon the RAM & ROM. The 2GB of Variant with 32GB of Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 is priced at Rs 9999, next up it has 3GB variant with 32GB which costs Rs 10,999 and lastly it sports 4GB variant with 64GB of internal storage priced at Rs 12,999. We have purchased Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 ro review it here.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 has some cons too including the hybrid SIM slot. Almost, all smartphones comes with the same setup today but dedicated slots are much better than this. It supports one MICRO-SIM + one NANO-SIM at a time or even one MEMORY CARD and one MICRO-SIM at a time. Even after offering a 64GB variant for the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4, they have built the device to support microSD up to 128GB which means the storage is further expandable.

Not sure about the Battery life of the smartphone if compared to Redmi Note 3, but technically the battery on Note 4 is better. It sports 4100mAh of battery which has no support for fast-charging. Battery ends up in 10 hours with heavy usage, including all messaging applications open in background with 3 hours of gaming.

Coming to the optics, this one we hate. To be frank, the camera doesn’t performed that better in low-lightning conditions. Although, the HDR mode in day light can take some decent landscape shots.

The Redmi Note 4 features a 13-megapixel rear camera with f/2.0 aperture and a dual-tone LED flash having background illumination features and the autofocus works pretty decent. It takes almost 1 seconds to do right focus without making sudden change and looks natural. Apart from that, it has a 5-megapixel front camera with f/2.0 aperture and beauty mode control in the interface. Although, the low-light selfies are not that well.

Connectivity option includes 4G VoLTE, dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.1, USB OTG, FM radio, GPS/ A-GPS, Miracast, GLONASS, and BeiDou. We were happy with fast working dialer app and the call quality of the phone. Also, Xiaomi has destroy the need of having TrueCaller app installed with it’s all in one dialer application.

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 is running on custom skin built by Xiaomi which is MIUI 8 based on Android Marshmallow. There’s a stable update for MIUI 8.2 if you checkup the updates via Updater app. Also, you can install unstable Android Nougat on it too, which shows Nougat coming on the Note 4 soon.

It has a collection of some decent wallpapers pre-installed in it and even you can download the suggested wallpaper from the wallpaper app which has a collection of some really cool wallpapers. You can use the Google Assistant into it changing the system language to English – United States. You need to just press hold the home button on the phone to launch it. Don’t be afraid if you don’t like it, you can always the change what you want to get launched after you press hold the home button.

Xiaomi has built some extraordinary features inside it, as you don’t even need to use any third-party application to lock your personal apps. Also, there will be a Second Space on the phone which gives you the feel i having two phones at a time. You can use multiple WhatsApp, Facebook or whichever app you want.

Xiaomi has pre-loaded lot of useless applications being a normal user which are not even uninstalled from the phone, better to disable such apps you no longer need.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Performance 

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 was able to manage almost everything we tested on it and we felt no issues while rendering videos with a heavy editor from it. Also, we played some popular games such as Asphalt 8 in multiplayer mode and it worked pretty all the time. Toggling between the apps is a little scary if you have multiple tabs open but that’s better for those who are moving from the same type of UI.

The Snapdragon 625 is ready to sustain almost all such heavier app exist on the Google Play Store on an average and having no such heating issues even after heavy usage. The phone gives a long-lasting battery backup even when you play such heavier apps on it.

Redmi Note 4 supports 4K video playback and viewings angles are quite good. The speakers on the bottom performed very well with the fully clean audio and there’s no sound flickering even at higher volume. As Xiaomi doesn’t provide headset with the unit, we have tested it with Samsung headset and the audio quality was decent. You can always improve the audio quality of headphone by using equalizer given on to the Additional settings and then to Headphone & audio effects.

The Camera of Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 is average and not that good in our opinion. It has various modes such as Beautify, Tilt-Shift, Timer, Straighten, Scene, Panorama, Manual, HHT. Manual mode has only white balance and ISO (3600 Max.) control. Scene mode given in the camera has various options such as portrait, landscape, sports, night, night portrait, beach, snow, sunset, fireworks, backlight, and flowers. The inbuilt editor on the phone has various filters which looks good while applying to images. Although, the images were bit overexposed in some conditions and the noise were there on the images in low-lightning. Taking some Macro shots, all were finer with full details. Both the Camera on Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 can shoot in 1080p and quality of the video is fine if placed in well lightning conditions.

Here are some images clicked with Redmi Note 4.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Camera Samples

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Camera Sample 2

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Camera Sample 3

You can easily judge that the images at night are not that well but in day time, landscape shots and macro shots came great with full details. Talking about the autofocus once again, that is really amazing and works in no time without giving a feel of sudden jerk while focusing. Although, we aren’t satisfied with the camera quality at low-lightning and in night and comment that it could have been better.

The most impressive about Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 for us is its battery performance. It sports a 4100mAh of battery which does lacks the must have fast-charging support but the backup of this smartphone after a single charge would not let you remember the charge time anymore. We did a lot if experiment to drain the battery fast and spoiled all important battery saving techniques but it worked pretty well.

Wrapping it Up

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 is one of the best choice in budget under Rs 15000, however we can’t compare it from the great Moto G5 Plus as its exceeds the price limit. Coming back to the next important question that, should you upgrade for Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 if you already own its predecessor Xiaomi Redmi Note 3. The answer is “No”. Yes, the company has fixed some issues with the new version but the Snapdragon 652 on Redmi Note 3 with high performance shouldn’t be considered worst. So, you need to wait for Redmi Note 5 or upcoming models.

For instance, you don’t own a Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 and just want to go with a best budget smartphone, obviously that is Xiaomi Redmi Note 4.

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