Vatsal Impex, the official distributor of Xiaomi products in Nepal has brought the Snapdragon version of their popular mid-range smartphone the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4. It packs all the same goodness that the regular Note 4 packs with the only difference being the Snapdragon processor. So what changes does it bring to the performance? Is it as good of a phone as the regular Redmi Note 4? Well, let us find out just that in this full review.
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 is a good looking device with its metallic build. It feels quite solid in the hands unlike its predecessor the Xiaomi Redmi Note 3. The back of the phone also is slightly rounded for a better grip and ergonomics. The buttons and ports too are where they should be and I had no problem getting used to them. Overall, the design of the Redmi Note 4 is very good and everyone will most definitely appreciate the premium build.
The phone packs a 5.5 inch Full HD IPS display with a pixel density of 401PPI. The display on this phone is amazing and it packs some great contrast and colors for a non-AMOLED display. Off course, you do have to tweak some settings on the Note 4, but that is the beauty of this phone. You can customize the vibrancy, the color, the warmth of the display through the software. Not only that but the phone also comes edged out with a 2.5D glass making it aesthetically pleasing. It almost looks like an edge display found on Xiaomi’s very own Mi Note 2. All in all, the display on the phone is its biggest strength and media consumers will have a great time using this phone.
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4SD packs a 2.0Ghz Qualcomm MSM8953 Snapdragon 625 processor along with the Adreno 506GPU this time around. This combination is more than enough for my day to day activities. The phone was easily able to take everything I threw at it and more. Gaming on this device is also very good and I have no complaint what so ever. The 4GB RAM, 64GB internal storage and micro SD card expansion up to 256GB is a true bliss on this phone. That said, on paper, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 with the MediaTek processor is a far better performer. The Helio X20 beats the Snapdragon 625 in many regards. If performance is a high priority for you, I would push you towards the MediaTek version of the Note 4. However, if you compare them side by side you won’t find much difference in day to day performance.
The Redmi Note4SD runs Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow with Xiaomi’s own custom skin MIUI8 overlayed on top of it. The UI experience is smooth and it is probably the only custom skin I like among all other Chinese OEM skins. It packs tons of useful features like Dual apps and second space. For a person like me who has to manage various Instagram, Facebook accounts, the dual apps make it just that convenient for me. The second space also helps me separate private and work contacts, files, pictures, documents, accounts etc from one another. However, the phone is still running on an older version of Android which is slowly losing its taste. That said, we already have confirmation that the Redmi Note 4 will receive the new Nougat update in the near future.
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4SD packs a f/2.0 13MP rear camera and a f/2.0 5MP front camera. They both are capable of taking some great shots in a well-lit environment. The pictures from the cameras have great colors and sharpness. The inbuilt camera app also packs tons of features and beautifying tools. However, dim the lights down just a tiny bit and the pictures come out to be soft, washed out and grainy. The camera definitely is one area I am not that happy with the phone. Xiaomi really needs to improve the picture quality on their lower end smartphones. That said, they are still capable cameras and taking social media worthy pictures won’t be an issue on this phone.
Biometrics and others:
Just sitting below the rear camera of the phone is a fingerprint scanner which works very well. The sensor also acts as a shutter button to take those precious selfies. Another great touch is the inclusion of an IR blaster on the top of the phone. It can be useful to control things like your TV, AC, DVD players and other IR devices. The phone also has a bottom firing speaker which lets out a decent volume of sound. Although I would have preferred a front firing speaker, the speaker on the Redmi Note 4 gets the job done.
Connectivity wise the phone offers a hybrid sim card slot meaning that you can either use two Nano sim cards or one Nano sim card and a Micro-SD card up to 256GB. Storage won’t be an issue in this phone as it comes with 64GB of internal storage by default. Other connectivity options include Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, 4G and USB 2.0.
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4SD packs a large 4100mAh non-user removable battery. This is more than enough to get 6-7 hours of screen on time with my heavy usage. Moderate users will be able to get 2days worth of battery life out of this phone. The battery, however, takes a long time to charge up. That is to be expected as the battery capacity itself is very large but I would have loved to see some sort of fast charging technology with the phone.
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4SD is an amazing smartphone which ticks all the right boxes. It has a great display, sturdy build, feature packed software and an attractive price tag of just Rs 28,499. The cameras on this phone are the one area that is lagging a bit behind. I would love to see better-optimized cameras in its next iteration. All in all, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4SD is a great smartphone and we cannot stop ourselves from recommending this smartphone.