Xiaomi has consistently managed to set the benchmark for mid-range smartphones in India with its Redmi Note series. With the Redmi Note 8 Pro, the company is again doing something similar.
The Redmi Note 8 Pro comes at a time when Xiaomi is facing stiff competition in the market from Realme, Vivo, and others. While the company is still the number one smartphone vendor in India, it knows that it cannot afford to rest on its laurels now and has to keep innovating with every new device. The Redmi Note series is particularly important for the company as it is the series that has helped the company carve a niche and then rule the Indian smartphone market.
The Redmi Note 8 Pro comes around seven months after the Redmi Note 7 Pro was launched. The Redmi Note 7 Pro marked a huge leap in terms of design and build quality. With the Redmi Note 8 Pro, Xiaomi has further tweaked the glass design by using Gorilla Glass that is curved on all four edges. The new Aura Flow design along with the combination of the new striking Gree n and White colors make the Redmi Note 8 Pro a looker.
The glass at the rear is curved at all four sides and it has a major ergonomic impact. Pick up the Redmi Note 8 Pro after using the Redmi Note 7 Pro and the former feels substantially easier to use one-handed. The curved glass means the phone does not dig into your palm like the Redmi Note 7 Pro.
Xiaomi also says that it has improved the 6.53-inch FHD+ IPS display at the front. Many smartphones in this price range are now coming with a Super AMOLED display but Xiaomi has decided to stick to an LCD display and further build on it. The panel is capable of reaching higher brightness levels and has HDR support – something which no other smartphone in this segment offers so there’s that.
Xiaomi has typically use one of Qualcomm’s newest Snapdragon chips inside its Redmi Note series. This time around though, the company has used a MediaTek Helio G90T chipset. As per benchmarks and specs, the Helio G90T is a significantly more powerful chip than the Snapdragon 710/712 found inside many other smartphones in this price range. But MediaTek chipsets are known to be buggy and suffer from overheating issues and whether the Redmi Note 8 Pro suffers from the same issues or not is something that I can only tell after a week or two of using the phone.
Xiaomi has also focused greatly on the camera setup of the Redmi Note 8 Pro. The Redmi Note 7 Pro was the first sub-15k smartphone to launch with a 48MP Sony IMX586 sensor.
For the Redmi Note 8 Pro, Xiaomi is using a 64MP Samsung sensor. It is not just that the sensor has more pixels, it is also physically bigger than the 48MP Sony sensor which means it should offer better dynamic range, colors, and lower noise levels. This 64MP sensor is complemented with a new 8MP 120-degree FoV ultra-wide angle sensor, a macro sensor, and a depth sensor. Xiaomi is also allowing video recording using the macro sensor which is not something that we have seen other smartphones with an ultra-wide angle camera offer.
The camera setup definitely seems competent, but I will reserve my thoughts on it for the review.
Xiaomi is offering a 4500mAh battery on the Redmi Note 8 Pro – up from the 4,000mAh battery found on the Redmi Note 7 Pro. The jump in capacity is complemented by an 18W fast charger that is bundled in the box. The massive battery and 18W charging speeds mean that most users are easily going to get around 1.5-2 days of battery life from the device.
The Redmi Note series has always set the benchmark in the mid-range smartphone segment of India. At first glance, it looks like Xiaomi has again managed to do that with the Redmi Note 8 Pro. The phone seems to offer it all at a price tag that starts from Rs 14,999. This is no small feat especially since Xiaomi has been facing heavy competition from Realme in this segment.
I will share more detailed thoughts about the Redmi Note 8 Pro’s design, performance, and camera in our full review next week. Until then, do drop a comment and let us know what are your thoughts on the Redmi Note 8 Pro’s price and specs.