The only good thing about smartphones below Rs. 5,000 is the… price! Most smartphones in this category come with more compromises than choices. But Xiaomi is now looking to change that.
After disrupting the sub Rs.15,000 and sub-Rs. 10,000 market in the smartphone world, the Chinese brand is now looking to redefine the sub-Rs 5,000 segment. The phone with which it proposes to do so is the Redmi Go, which it has launched at Rs. 4,499. And this is what it offers:
Not a typical Rs 5,000 design!
If you have seen smartphones in the sub Rs. 5,000 category, you would know that design is not one of their strong suits. The phones in the segment mostly either look too feature-phone-like or downright cheap.
Fortunately, this is not the case with the Redmi Go. Yes, the smartphone does not look like a premium segment phone but the fact that it looks like a proper smartphone and that too a solid one, thanks to the metal finished polycarbonate back on the phone, is a good thing. It is also remarkably compact, and is one of the few phones out there that can be used one-handed and will easily fit in most pockets.
HD display at this price point
One of the biggest USPs of the Redmi Go is that it comes with a 5-inch HD display which is a rarity at this price point. Most smartphones offer displays of a much lower resolution (800 x 480).
But Xiaomi has added an HD display with a screen resolution of 1280 x 720 and a very decently bright one as well. This means the display will produce better colour and detail, thanks to the presence of more pixels in those 5 inches of space.
Not so surprising specs
With a price tag of Rs. 4,499, expectations from the spec sheet are generally on the lower side and well, the Redmi Go does not really pull any major surprises (apart from that display). The smartphone runs on a relatively old Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 chipset which is bundled with 1 GB RAM.
It also has 8 GB onboard storage which can be expanded up to 128 GB via micro SD card. These numbers might not sound as impressive on paper but should get the phone through most performance obstacles that it expected to jump through (read the fifth point to find out why). The smartphone comes with dual SIM card slots with support for 4G VoLTE and a dedicated microSD card slot, which is definitely a plus point.
Scoring on megapixels and mAh
The departments where the smartphone brings good numbers to the table are the camera and battery. The Redmi Go sports an 8-megapixel primary camera with support for full HD video recording and a 5-megapixel secondary camera with HDR, both of which are huge pluses at this price point.
The reason why we are optimistic about the cameras of the Redmi Go is because Xiaomi has delivered good camera performance even in the most affordable of smartphones in the past (we were very impressed by the cameras on the Redmi 4A and 5A, even though they did cost a little more). It runs on a 3,000 mAh battery which should help the device get through at least a day, taking into consideration the smaller HD display, and the fact that the Snapdragon 425 is known for its power management.
Going strong with Android Go
The specs on the Redmi Go might not look super impressive on paper. We can see people worrying about just 1 GB RAM, but the device might just be able to pull all routine tasks off, thanks to the OS it runs on. Yes, it is Android, but not your routine Android, that you find on most phones.
Xiaomi has partnered with Google and has created its very first Android Go smartphone which is supposed to give you a smooth Android experience even on relatively lower specced devices (1 GB RAM). Google also makes special lighter versions (Go editions) of applications to go (pun intended) along with these smartphones that do not have high, or even mid-segment, specs. While this is good news, the fact that Redmi Go comes with Android 8.1 (Go version) and not Android 9 (Go version), might disappoint some.
Priced at Rs. 4,499, the Redmi Go is very much in a zone of its own as long as super affordable smartphones go. The only real competition that it actually faces is from the Nokia 1, which does not offer a spec sheet as strong as that of the Redmi Go (especially in terms of processor and display). This could well be the perfect back up smartphone for anyone who wants a second phone or wants just a phone in a hurry with no fuss.