Xiaomi has once again proved the fact they can cook the perfect budget smartphone recipe. We are talking about none other than their latest release Redmi 5A aka Desh Ka Smartphone. Xiaomi announced this new product for Rs 5,999, which is same as that of its predecessor the Redmi 4A. However, they made the deal even sweeter by offering the first 5 million units of Redmi 5A for just Rs 4,999. We grabbed one unit from Flipkart to find out how Xiaomi cooked this budget smartphone killer.
Look And Feel
The newbie, of course, have killer looks with the metallic matte finish and dual pyrolytic graphite sheet in the back to keep it one-degree cooler. The blending groove in the back panel around the sides and metallic touch to the physical buttons and SIM tray is appealing. The Redmi 5A is also slim and sleek but a little heavier compare to Redmi 4A. However, the sides of the display aren’t well protected and we recommend a protective case for added safety.
Hardware, Software, & Design
Coming to the hardware specs, Xiaomi hasn’t made any major changes. The Redmi 5A is powered by the same Snapdragon 425 Quad-core SoC as that of Redmi 4A. But, there is a downgrade in the battery capacity to 3000mAh, probably for maintaining the device weight. However, it has the advantage of the lightning fast ROM MIUI 9 based on Android 7.1 out of the box. Even though Redmi 4A also has a guaranteed MIUI 9 update, it hasn’t rolled out yet. Like 4A, the 5A also comes in two storage variants (2GB + 16GB, 3GB + 32GB). You also get 3 colour choices (dark grey, rose gold and gold), but the shades are entirely different for both phones.
|Specification||Redmi 4A||Redmi 5A|
|Metallic Matte Finish||No||Yes|
|Dedicated SD Card Slot||No||Yes|
|Battery||3120 mAh||3000 mAh|
|Dimensions||139.9 x 70.4 x 8.5 (mm)||140.4 x 70.1 x 8.35 (mm)|
Let’s take a look at the device from all sides. On the front is the 5-inch 296 ppi display with 1280 x 720 resolution, non-backlit capacitive buttons, notification LED, 5MP selfie camera, proximity-light sensors and earpiece. The rear side both devices have the 13MP primary camera, flash and backfiring speakers. On the top side, sits the 3.5mm audio port, IR blaster and noise cancelling mic. At the bottom, both are having micro USB 2.0 port, and mic.
The left side of Redmi 4A has a hybrid SIM tray while that of Redmi 5A has two SIM trays( 1 Hybrid + 1 Nano). This facility allows us to use two Nano SIMs and Micro SD card at the same time. Both devices have power and volume rockers on the right side.
Network And Connectivity
It supports 2G/3G networks along with all the 4G LTE bands in India and has VoLTE/ViLTE capability. When you use two SIM cards simultaneously, the primary SIM can support 4G calls and data while the secondary SIM can support 2G calls only. For local connectivity, it has 802.11 b/g/n 2.4GHz Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1 and USB 2.o port. The device also sports FM radio and IR blaster for controlling your home appliances with Mi Remote app.
Performance And Benchmarking
Comparing these devices in terms of performance won’t make any sense since they are the same SoC. However, there is a noticeable difference in terms of battery backup and OS optimization. While using the device as a daily driver, Redmi 5A offered stutter-free performance. The call quality and signal reception were good, especially for Reliance 4G VoLTE network. However, it only delivered average to below average performance for graphics-intensive games and applications.
We thought that the 3000mAh battery wasn’t enough, but the optimization in MIUI 9 made it last over 2 days for a typical usage scenario. The device is equipped with a 13-megapixel rear and 5-megapixel front shooter. These sensors captured decent shots especially considering the price point of this device. The snaps were okay outdoors but were inconsistent and grainy for indoor and artificial lightings. The only thing that may nag you is the slow charging (~3 hours to full charge) of the device.
|Benchmark Tool||Redmi 4A||Redmi 5A|
|GeekBench CPU Single-core/Multi-core||664/1646||679/1883|
To sum up, Xiaomi is offering the budget killer Redmi 5A at a price which we can’t refuse. If you own Redmi 4A, then there is absolutely no need to upgrade to 5A. By giving us plenty of choices in the 10K bracket, Xiaomi is reigning the budget smartphone market. Moreover, they have conquered the Indian smartphone market within a short span of time and that is applaudable. Hope the review was useful, Peace!
- Premium built and metallic matte finish
- Highly optimized MIUI 9 based on Android 7.1
- Support for two Nano SIMs and Micro SD card
- Support for IR blaster
- Killer initial pricing
- Still the old Snapdragon 425 SoC
5-inch HD 1280 x 720 display
1.4GHz Snapdragon 425 quad-core processor + Adreno 308 500MHz
16GB/32GB + Dedicated microSD card slot
Android Nougat OS + MIUI 9
13MP, f/2.2 aperture, PDAF, HDR
5MP, f/2.0 large aperture
Nano SIM + Nano SIM
4G LTE, VoLTE, 3G, 2G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, IR Blaster