The Xiaomi Redmi Note 3, which was released in 2016, went on to become the most popular affordable handset in India selling millions of units. Xiaomi has started off 2017 with the successor, the Redmi Note 4. The Redmi Note 4 comes with 5.5 inches Full HD display and is powered by Snapdragon 625 Octa core processor. It runs on Android 6.0 along with MIUI 8. The device also packs the same 4100 mAh battery.
So does the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 has the power to beat the Redmi Note 3 to become the best-selling device in the segment? Let’s find out in this detailed review.
Here is the video review of the phone, for the text version, read on.
Design and Build:
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 does not feature any drastic change from the Redmi Note 3 but is now more refined in the design aspect. Xiaomi has adopted the design language of Mi Max with a smaller form factor and is slightly slimmer than the predecessor. The device is made of the aluminum unibody design. The phone now comes with flat edges unlike the curved edges on Note 3. The phone feels great to use and is better in terms of design when compared to Redmi Note 3. The overall fit and finish also feel premium for the price.
On the right side, you get power and volume key, while the left side houses the SIM tray. At the bottom, there is micro USB charging slot and a speaker unit. Up top, you have the 3.5mm audio jack and IR blaster. The rear panel comes with the 13MP camera, LED flash and Mi logo. The front panel has 5.5 inches Full HD display and three capacitive touch buttons which are backlit. A 5MP front camera is positioned on the top of the display along with the sensors. Overall, the Redmi Note 4 feels great for a device in the sub 15k pricing.
The Redmi Note 4 comes with a 5.5inch Full HD display and comes with 2.5D curved glass. Similar to Redmi Note 3, the Note 4 also does not feature any additional protection on the display. The 2.5D glass gives a nice feel using the device and this is one the important changes compared to Note 3. The display has good colors and sharpness along with good viewing angles. One of the useful features of MIUI is the reading mode and this is available on Redmi Note 4 as well and this aids in reading during the night and decreases the strain on eyes.
There is also an option to adjust the color temperature of the display from the settings. The display is easily one of the best we have seen in this segment and is a treat to use.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 comes with MIUI8 on top of Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow. If you have used a Xiaomi device previously you might be knowing that MIUI is a heavily skinned UI provide tons of customization and it does not have any resemblance with stock UI. It comes with multiple home screens and a custom notification center along with settings panel.
The phone comes with a plethora of options to customize, be it in the form of themes, icon packs, lock screen, boot animations, sounds and more. All of these can be downloaded from the Themes app.
The phone also comes with Child mode which was announced with MIUI (more details on Child mode available here) and also the regular Lite mode. The phone also features the security app which comes with cleaner, virus scan, block list, data usage and more.
There are a couple of useful changes to the UI in terms of features and it comes with dual apps and Second space which are new in MIUI 8. The Second space allows you to create a different space on your phone which does not share anything with the first space. You can use the second space as a completely different phone with apps, security and all features included. This means if you want two profiles on your phone like home and work, second space helps in that. Dual apps, as the name indicates, allows users to concurrently run two instances of the app. You can run two WhatsApp, Facebook, Messenger etc on the device.
Xiaomi has also added lots of useful apps like FM radio, recorder, Compass, torch and much more. Xiaomi’s attention to smaller details is simply amazing and the UI looks very much polished with no lags or crashes. The phone also comes with IR blaster which means you can use the phone as a remote for your TV, A/C, set top box and other devices. There is a Mi Remote app which you can configure with Indian brands and this comes handy.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 comes with Snapdragon 625 Octa Core processor clocked at 2.0Ghz and coupled with Adreno 506 GPU. The phone comes in three variants, 2GB, 3GB and 4GB RAM. The 4GB RAM variant comes with 64GB storage while the other two variants have 32GB storage.
While the Snapdragon 625 is not as powerful as the Snapdragon 650 (on Redmi Note 3), it is built on the 14nm process and this makes it highly energy efficient. The phone performs very well in day to day activities and there are no slow down or lags in the device. The processor can handle all tasks including gaming. We played high graphic rich games and there were no issues in the gaming. There was no heating on the device even when running intensive games.
The phone also packs an IR blaster similar to Note 3 and you can configure it to use with brands in India which come really handy. The fingerprint scanner is located on the rear panel and it does a really good job in unlocking the phone. You can also use the fingerprint scanner to lock apps. The call quality and the speaker performance of the device is also really good.
The phone has dual SIM and micro SD hybrid slot. We had the 64GB variant and this is one of the highlights of the device.
The Redmi Note 4 comes with a 13MP rear camera with f/2.0 aperture and dual LED flash and a 5MP front camera. The camera interface of Redmi Note 4 is typical MIUI and packs a lot of additional features including manual mode and filters. Similar to Redmi Note 3, the video recording is limited to 1080p even though the hardware supports it.
The 13MP rear camera of the Redmi Note 4 can snap decent captures in daylight condition with good color quality and sharpness levels. The macro or close up images are also quite good, although at times it is slightly saturated. The PDAF also works very well. The low light photography of the device is also decent, but there is noise in low light images. The 5MP front camera can also produce decent selfies. While Xiaomi has addressed the camera issues in Redmi Note 4 compared to Note 3, it still needs to be slightly better to match the competition. Here are some photos taken with the device.
The phone packs a 4100mAh battery and this is the same capacity which was available on Redmi Note 3. But now with the Snapdragon 625 chipset, the battery performance of the device is really great. We tested the device with social networking apps, browsing, calls, gaming, camera and more and we could easily get almost 2 days of battery life. If you are a heavy user, you still get 1.5 days on the device. The only downside for the device in terms of the battery is the lacks of latest fast charging and it is limited to 5V 2A.
What Xiaomi has done with Redmi Note 4 is to refine the already hit Redmi Note 3 instead of going for a completely new device. And the result is a perfect all-rounder in Redmi Note 4. The Redmi Note 4 has good design and build, with a great display, customizable software, good performance and excellent battery life. The only area where Redmi Note 4 could have been slightly better is the camera.
Redmi Note 4 once again sets the benchmark for phones priced below Rs 15000 and with excellent pricing and availability of 64GB variant, Xiaomi once again has a winner in Redmi Note 4. If you are looking for an affordable device, we highly recommend you to get the Redmi Note 4.