When it comes to Indian budget smartphones, Xiaomi stands out among the horde of developers, especially due to their incredible spec-to-price ratio. The smartphone company, which released the low-cost Redmi 4A in May 2017, is back again with a new budget offering — the Redmi 5A.
Launched with a tagline The smartphone for everyone, the Redmi 5A is powered by the quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 processor and a 3,000-mAh battery unit. The new phone is priced at just Rs 4,999 as an introductory offer.
It goes without saying that the features of the Redmi 5A are almost identical to those of the Redmi 4A, whether it's the processor, the design or the battery specs. So, it brings forth the most important question — should you buy the Xiaomi Redmi 5A?
We at Guiding Tech are here to help you get rid of any such confusion though a bit differently. Here's our take on the pros and cons of the Xiaomi Redmi 5A.
While dual-SIM phones make it extremely easy to fit two SIM cards in a smartphone, it makes things a bit difficult if you want a few extra bytes of storage in your device.
However, that's not the case with the Redmi 5A, as it sports a dedicated slot for the microSD card. This means that the phone can easily pack two SIM cards and a memory card together.
This Android phone gives you the option to stick a SIM card and a microSD card, while the secondary SIM rests in its very own dedicated slot.
2. MIUI 9 with a Dash of Android Nougat
The Redmi 5A ships with Android Nougat with MIUI 9 running on top. Thus, not only does it offer you the benefits of MIUI 9 like Second Space, App Vault, and App Lock, but it also gives you Android Nougat features like Mono audio and the Split-screen functionality.
The MIUI 9 has quite a lot of added features over its predecessor - MIUI 8 - such as People search, a better notification management, and quicker app switch.
Xioami is known to pack an IR emitter on top of most of its phones and the Redmi 5A is no different.
This phone comes with an IR blaster, which makes it an ideal candidate to double up as a universal remote. Phones with IR emitters make it extremely easy to control devices such as air-conditioners, TV, set-top boxes, and etc.
You don't need to depend on any third-party remote apps as this one sports a built-in remote app, which goes by the name of Mi Remote.
Interestingly, the remote app includes a number of company names for Indian TV, set-top boxes, and AC brands.
4. Sharp Display
The Redmi 5A sports an HD screen and, for the price it quotes, the display is quite bright and sharp.
What's more? The viewing angles are also great and the built-in suite of wallpapers adds to the pros of this Android phone.
Xiaomi Redmi 5A Cons
1. Same Ol' Design
Not many budget phones boast a revolutionary design and the Redmi 5A proves the above statement true to a T.
While the design change of the Xiaomi Redmi 4 was a welcome change, looking at the design of the Redmi 5A seems like a step back.
It sports the same rounded corners with slightly thicker bezels at the edges and the rear panel. This phone also sports the same look as any other Xiaomi phone (read the Redmi Note 4 and the Redmi Y1).
2. Speaker Grills at the Back
The Xiaomi Redmi 5A's speaker grills run along the entire lower back instead of the bottom edge.
While the audio output of the Redmi 5A is great, the sound gets muffled due to the poor placement when it's placed on its back.
3. No Fingerprint Sensor
Looking at the current market trend, the inclusion of a fingerprint sensor in the 3GB/32GB variant would have been more than appropriate.
If we look back, even the Xiaomi Redmi 4, which costs almost the same (Rs 6,999), comes with a fingerprint sensor.
Priced at Rs 4,999 (with the Rs 1,000 discount), the Redmi 5A packs some decent features — be it the Snapdragon 425 processor, the 13-megapixel rear camera or the HD display.
It's quite obvious that asking for an NFC connectivity, a USB Type-C port or a dual-camera setup would be an overkill. If you ask me, just a fingerprint sensor would have been an apt addition to the Redmi 5A.
It's worth to be noted that the Redmi 5A offers a lower battery life than the Redmi 4A — 3,000mAh against the 3,120mAh of the latter.
It's true that the Indian smartphone market is lately being spoilt by choices with brands such as Xiaomi, Karbon, and Micromax rolling out their 'Bharat-inspired' phones. However, at the end of the day, it's the durability that matters.
So, will you upgrade to the Redmi 5A? Do drop us a line or two if you have any question.