Earlier this week, Xiaomi launched the Redmi K20 and Redmi K20 Pro in India. These are Xiaomi’s new premium mid-range handsets and contrary to other budget smartphones from the company, the reaction to these new smartphones have been less than stellar. This is primarily due to their pricing, especially for the Redmi K20.
Many expected the Redmi K20 to be priced under Rs 20,000, with the Redmi K20 Pro coming in at around Rs 25,000. The reality is a bit different though, with the Redmi K20 starting at Rs 21,999 and the Redmi K20 Pro starting from Rs 27,999. So, are these handsets overpriced?
Redmi K20 Pro
The Redmi K20 Pro ideally competes with the OnePlus 7 Pro which is priced around Rs 50,000 in India. And yet, it has a starting price tag which is lower than that of the OnePlus 7. In fact, the price difference between the Redmi K20 Pro and OnePlus 7 Pro is so much that one can easily buy a Redmi Note 7 Pro with the money saved and still have a few grand to spend on accessories.
When compared to the OnePlus 7, the Redmi K20 Pro is an overall better device as it offers a more flashy design, a pop-up camera, triple-camera setup, and more. From a value perspective, the Redmi K20 Pro simply has no competition not just in its price range but even if one expands the price band to Rs 40,000-Rs 45,000.
The pricing of the Redmi K20 is the one that has created the most controversy. This is because many expected the smartphone to start from Rs 20,000 but the base variant starts from Rs 21,999. Before we discuss the price further, below is a look at some of the key features of the Redmi K20:
- 6.39-inch FHD+ AMOLED panel
- Snapdragon 730 chipset
- Gorilla Glass 5 panels at front and rear
- P2i nano-coating
- 20MP Pop-up selfie camera
- 48MP triple-camera setup
- 4000mAh battery with 18W fast charging
- USB-C connectivity
There is no other smartphone which offers the same set of features as the Redmi K20 in a similar price band. The Vivo V15 Pro, Realme 3 Pro, Realme X, and Oppo F11 Pro all miss out on at least a few of the above-mentioned features, with most of them coming with a plastic back and a weaker Snapdragon 710 chip. If anything, the only other handset which competes with the Redmi K20 is Xiaomi’s own Redmi K20 Pro.
The Poco F1 Problem
To a certain extent, Xiaomi itself has to blame for the problem here. There’s no doubt that the Redmi K20 and Redmi K20 Pro are aggressively priced smartphones and offer great value for money. However, last year with the Poco F1, the company significantly raised expectations in terms of price-to-performance. Most people are judging the Redmi K20 based on its Snapdragon 730 chipset and ignoring the complete package.
It was by using the same logic that Xiaomi got success with the Poco F1 last year. It managed to price the phone around Rs 20,000 by making compromises with its build quality, using an inferior quality LCD display, and more. The reliability issues with the Poco’s display are well known and it took Xiaomi months to fix them for good.
From a performance viewpoint, the Redmi K20 is not as fast as the Poco F1. But when one sees the complete package, things change quite a bit. The Redmi K20 offers superior build quality, battery life, and camera which the Poco F1 lacks.
What are your thoughts on the pricing of the Redmi K20 and Redmi K20 Pro? Do you think Xiaomi could have priced them better?