The Xiaomi Redmi 6 Pro promises to deliver good all-rounder performance, coupled with great battery life while also sporting the notched display.
- Compact form factor
- Durable design
- Consistent bokehs
- Old chipset
- Can’t stream HD videos on Netflix
It is more difficult to stay on top than to get there. The minute you hear or read this, you are tempted to put it in the “global gyaan” folder. After all it is one of those phrases – and perhaps it is – that is thrown around in corporate boardrooms. There’s a lot, however, in the adage which can be applied in almost every sphere of life. And how many times we have seen brands, athletes, actors fall prey to the philosophy. Not that it’s happening to the Indian smartphone market leader as of now but going by its recent phones, dare we say it might end up going that way. We keep on saying that the achievement of Xiaomi becoming the number one brand in the country is remarkable. The company has managed to grab the top spot by launching smartphones catering mainly to the budget segment. With each smartphone the company tried to bring something new and extra for the customer at a given price point. However, is that strategy now coming across a bit stale? Has Xiaomi reached a saturation point and is not really bringing anything ‘new’ to the table. If the latest smartphones in the recently launched Redmi 6 series is anything to by then the answers to the above two questions have to be in the affirmative. The company launched three smartphones Redmi 6A, Redmi 6 and Xiaomi Redmi 6 Pro. Out of the three, the Xiaomi Redmi 6 Pro is the most expensive one. At the time of the launch the company announced that the smartphone is designed for a power user. Going by the specifications we didn’t find anything interesting or ground-breaking in the smartphone. However, we used the smartphone for a good amount of time and here is what we think about it.
Xiaomi seems to have settled on this design language and has dressed its latest Redmi 6 Pro in a similar fashion as the Redmi Note 5 Pro and other Redmi devices, adding in the notch. This is a bit disappointing considering Xiaomi is now repeating the same design blueprint across its entire range. The rear panel is made of metal, with plastic edges. Compared to the Redmi 5/Note 5, it feels a little bulky and does feel slightly heavier — thanks to a large 4000mAh battery. However, in typical Xiaomi fashion, the ergonomics are spot on.
The Redmi 6 Pro looks modern and contemporary on the front and one can’t help but notice the notch. The smartphone flaunts a compact screen with a trendy cutout that houses the earpiece, the selfie camera and the proximity sensor. Notably, despite the incorporation of the notch, the device still has noticeable bezels to the left and right of the display and comparatively thicker chin. There’s also a tiny single-colour LED notification hidden beneath the chin.
The handset is equipped with all the essentials — a 3.5mm headphone jack, IR blaster, a micro-USB port and speaker grille. There’s also a tri-slot for two SIM cards and a microSD, which is a good move by Xiaomi as it lets users use two SIM cards and a microSD card simultaneously — a rarity in the segment yet.
There’s a tall 5.84-inch Full HD+ display with a 19:9 aspect ratio with a pixel density of 432 pixels per inch. The IPS LCD is rich and vibrant and the text and images appear crisp. The viewing angles are pretty good and the display is bright enough to be readable in bright sunlight.
It’s a tad oversaturated, but you can tune the color saturation and warmth levels to your preference if you want more natural colors.
The Xiaomi Redmi 6 Pro is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor which is the same chipset that the company introduced in its Redmi Y2 smartphone. With this processor the handset manages to perform well when we talk about routine tasks. This 14nm chipset performs quite well during the gaming sessions. However, you will notice a bit of stutter at times when you are trying to play graphic intensive games like Shadow Fight. So, you are looking for a smartphone for gaming then Redmi 6 Pro is not for you.
The smartphone offers 4GB of RAM and 64GB internal storage which can be expanded further by adding a microSD card. The audio experience on the smartphone was reasonable but doesn’t demand too much of our attention as and there is nothing much to talk about it. The sound output is better on earphones as compared to loudspeaker. We didn’t had any problem with the call quality or signal reception. In fact there was no call drops while we were travelling in subways and metro.
Coming to the software, the Xiaomi Redmi 6 Pro runs Android 8.1 Oreo operating system topped with company’s own MIUI 9. At the time of the launch, the company announced that soon the device will get MIUI 10 update. This time the smartphone comes with fewer apps which include Netflix, Facebook, Amazon, PhonePe and others. This is a good new for some users as many of the Xiaomi smartphones don’t support Netflix and one is not able to download the app from the Play Store, but with Xiaomi Redmi 6 Pro, users get Netflix support out-of-the-box.
Users will don’t have the option to uninstall any of the pre-installed app from the smartphone.
Like always, MIUI is extremely stable when we compare it to other UI customisations. We didn’t notice any lag or app crash. Multi-tasking was quite smooth on the smartphone and the multi-window feature also worked as expected.
The cameras are one of the biggest highlights of the Redmi 6 Pro. It features a 12MP primary sensor with a f/2.2 aperture and a 5MP secondary sensor with the same aperture, which is used for sensing depth for the portrait mode. This is the same setup that we have witnessed on the Redmi Note 5 Pro. There’s also a single LED flash and Phase Detection Auto Focus (PDAF).
Xiaomi says that the rear camera setup leverages AI power for better photography. You also get EIS for video shooting — a segment first, which should help you get less shaky clips. For selfies, there is a 5MP sensor with a f/2.0 aperture. However, it misses out on the front flash.
The images captured in daylight came out well and with natural colours, and a fair amount of sharpness and details too. The dynamic range is above average and we rarely needed HDR. However, a few images clicked were a bit oversaturated with high contrast ratio. We were able to focus on objects quick enough — thanks to PDAF; however, it struggles during low light photography. Sadly, photos turn out to below average after the sun sets. The HHT mode, meant for low-light photography, does help serve better, but not as much as expected. Lastly, the rear camera portrait shots are decent with blurring effects appeared to be on right track.
Xiaomi Redmi 6 Pro is backed by a 4000mAh battery which you will find in most of the Xiaomi smartphones. The company claims that the smartphone can deliver up to 48 hours of battery backup on a single charge. However, during out testing we found that it lasted for a day on single charge and with routine usage. On the other hand, the smartphone also takes up a lot of time to charge from 0 to 100%. The company is giving the standard 5V 2A in the box which is also not of much help when it comes to charging the device quickly.
The Redmi 6 Pro sits interestingly between budget and mid-range smartphones. It’s a well-rounded iterative upgrade that adds modern elements.
The Redmi series is mostly an automatic recommendation for someone looking for a budget or mid-range smartphone.
There’s nothing new here. The Snapdragon 625 processor is much maligned by power users, but it does the job well for most budget smartphone buyers.
The Redmi 6 Pro is priced at 10,999 rupees ($153) for the 3GB and 32GB variant and 12,999 rupees for the 4GB and 64GB variant ($180). This pricing might be revised after a couple of months because of the falling rupee in the country, but any increase would make things slightly difficult for Xiaomi.
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The Redmi series is mostly an automatic recommendation for someone looking for a budget or mid-range smartphone, and the Redmi 6 Pro is no different. It’s a reliable and functional smartphone in a compact, well-built chassis, even if a tad boring.