Xiaomi Redmi 4 first impressions: The best budget smartphone?


Xiaomi Redmi 4 will start at a price of Rs 6,999 in India, going up to Rs 10,999 and here’s our first impression

Xiaomi Redmi 4 is priced starting at Rs 6,999 for the base variant and here’s our first impression.

Redmi Note 4, Redmi 4A, and now Xiaomi Redmi 4. Well, this is Xiaomi’s strategy for India, at least if you go by 2017 launches. The new Redmi 4, as the company says, is the successor the Redmi 3S, Redmi 3S Prime series, but this one has a lot more versions compared to the previous one.(Xiaomi Redmi 4)

Xiaomi’s Redmi 4 comes in three variants in India. Redmi 4 with 2GB RAM +16GB storage at Rs 6,999, the Redmi 4 with 3GB RAM+32GB storage at Rs 8,999, and finally Redmi 4 with 4GB RAM+64GB storage at Rs 10,999. Xiaomi has taken one step further by introducing a 64GB storage variant for its budget smartphone. Redmi 4 now comes in a matte black variant, similar to the Redmi Note 4, and there’s a gold colour variant as well.

We got the Redmi 4 with 3GB RAM and 32GB storage, and here’s our detailed first impression of the device.

Design, Display

Redmi 4 is like a mini version of the Redmi Note 4. This phone sports a metal unibody design similar to the Redmi Note 4 series, except this one has a 5-inch HD display compared to the former’s 5.5-inch full HD one.(Xiaomi Redmi 4)

The dual, CNC-drilled speakers are now at the bottom of the device, and in the middle is the micro-USB port. It has a slightly curved back with antenna bands running on top and the bottom; the headphone jack is on top of the phone.

Redmi 4 is a mini-version of Redmi Note 4 in terms of design.

Overall, the 5-inch form factor makes this a very compact device to hold. However, the Redmi 4 is prone to picking up smudges, especially on the back. So get a cover and tempered glass for the front as well to avoid screen disasters. For those who like a 5-inch phone, the Redmi 4 remains a good-looking option to consider.

Redmi 4 is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 processor.

On the display front, this one sports a 5-inch HD display, which works well in all lighting conditions, even bright sunlight. For a budget phone, this is one of the better displays you can get in the market.

Specifications, Performance

I’ve been using the Redmi 4 for the past couple of days, and so far I wouldn’t say general performance is an issue. The phone is powered by a Qualcomm octa-core Snapdragon 435 processor and has 3GB RAM + 32GB storage, which can be expanded via a microSD card.

For your daily social media consumption, be it YouTube or Facebook, or daily messaging, this phone is good enough. It performs the basic tasks without any hiccups.(Xiaomi Redmi 4)

However, Redmi 4 is not ideal for graphics heavy games like Asphalt 8, and there is a noticeable lag at times. But remember this is a budget phone. The phone does tend to get warm towards the top when you’re gaming for too long, but nothing unbearable. Navigating between apps is not an issue.

Redmi 4 has dual speakers at the bottom.


Redmi 4 comes with a 13MP rear camera and a 5MP front camera. The front camera is acceptable I would say, though the software kept tagging me as a 44-year-old male, which is not very flattering. The rear camera is not the fastest, and while colours like red appear a bit washed out, the overall picture composition is not so bad.

Photos take time to render in HDR mode, but the final results are quite nice.

Sample shots from Redmi 4.
Sample shots from Redmi 4.

Overall, I would say the camera is pretty standard on the Redmi 4, and delivers a good experience given the price of the phone. On the low-light shots, I still have to test out this phone some more.


Xiaomi has made this the USP of the Redmi series. Redmi 4 has a 4100 mAh battery, which will easily last a day. However, there is no fast-charging and the phone takes a good three hours plus to get to 100 per cent. But even if you charge this phone at 50 per cent, you should be able to get more than a day with moderate to heavy usage.

Xiaomi Redmi 4Redmi 4 has a 4100 mAh battery.

Final thoughts

With Redmi 3S, Redmi 3S Prime, Xiaomi claims to have sold 4 million units over the last nine months. Redmi 4 will try and build on that success. Plus, the company has expanded its distribution channels, which will likely boost sales. For now, Redmi 4 looks like a very capable phone, offering solid specifications and a sturdy performance at a budget.