Xiaomi is in the process of incrementally upgrading its Redmi series of phones. The Redmi 8 series is no exception to this. It is a direct incremental upgrade to the Redmi 7 series. Xiaomi also launched the Redmi 8a as the successor to the Redmi 7a a few weeks back. Although earlier today, Xiaomi launched the Redmi 8 at a price of Rs.7,999 which is an entry-level smartphone. At a first glance though the Redmi 8 might not seem like a worthy successor to the Redmi 7. But before going to any conclusions, let’s see what it has to offer.
Redmi 8 | Specifications
- SoC: Qualcomm Snapdragon 439 Chipset
- GPU: Adreno 505
- Display: 6.22” HD+ IPS LCD with Dot Notch
- Resolution: 720 x 1520px, ~270ppi
- Rear Camera: 12MP Sony IMX363 Sensor at f/1.8 + 2MP Depth Sensor
- Front Camera: 8MP Selfie Shooter at f/2.0
- Battery: 5000mAh w/18W Fast Charging
- RAM & Storage options: 3GB|32GB or 4GB|64GB
- OS: MIUI 10 atop Android 9.0 Pie
- Card Slot: Yes (Dedicated)
- Sensors: Fingerprint (rear-mounted). Accelerometer, proximity, compass
- Colors: Onyx Black, Ruby Red, Sapphire Blue
Redmi 8 | Build & Design
The Redmi 8 brings a fresh and newer Aura Mirror design language. This design is also expected to be the design for the much-awaited Redmi Note 8 lineup which is to debut in the coming week in India. The body of the phone is made up of Polycarbonate and comes in 3 colors, namely – Sapphire Blue, Ruby Red, and Onyx Black.
The phone sports dual AI sharpshooters at the back and a mono sharpshooter at the front. A primary 12MP unit sits behind an f/1.8 wide lens, while also sporting a 2MP depth sensor right below the primary 12MP lens. At the front is an 8MP unit sitting behind an f/2.0 lens for your selfies.
Battery & Internals
Featuring an impressive 5000mAh battery, the Redmi 8 is already a full-day phone. Whilst the 18W Fast Charging sweetens the deal even further, along with – a Type C port, Gorilla Glass 5 and P2i Splash proof coating. It also does come with two dedicated SIM slots instead of hybrid ones and features a dedicated SD card slot.
But two issues might just hold you back from purchasing this device –
- Snapdragon 439 Chipset – Quite frankly by present technology progress standards, this chipset is last gen.
- There is no 18W Fast Charging Adapter included in the box – you have to purchase it separately.
Price & Availability
The Redmi 8 will be going on sale for Rs.7,999 and Rs.8,999 for the 3+32GB and 4+64GB variants respectively. However, Xiaomi is doing a promotional sale for the first 5 million users. These 5 million can get their hands on the higher variant for the price of the lower one. Xiaomi stated that the official reason is that they are celebrating being at the No.1 spot among smartphone brands for 2 consecutive years.
As far as we see it, the Snapdragon 439 chipset is somewhat a let down on an otherwise good entry-level phone. It seems more so when you consider that Redmi 8’s predecessor had a much more powerful Snapdragon 632 chipset. With a Type-C USB port and Fast Charging, the phone is otherwise a good entry-package into the Android smartphone ecosystem.
So, should you get it? The answer to that really depends on two things –
- Your Budget
- You happen to bother by specifications
Should you find yourself in the first category, the answer is a definite – “Yes”. Although if you fancy yourself some specifications, you are definitely in the second category and the answer is obviously to find something else. If you do not happen to be bothered by old gen phones, then the Redmi Note 7, which received a permanent price cut recently should be your go-to option.
For other value for money options check out our article on “Best Smartphones under Rs.10,000”.