It would not be a stretch to say that Xiaomi has had a significant impact on the Indian entry-level smartphone market. Since the arrival of Xiaomi, a category that was previously overlooked in favour of affordable, midrange, as well as premium smartphones has been given new life. Xiaomi’s Redmi smartphone line is known for providing incredible specs for the price as well as eye-catching design elements. The Redmi A1 is no exception. With a price tag of Rs 6,499, we had to see what one of the most affordable smartphones on the market had to offer. Here’s our take on the Redmi A1.
|Chipset||MediaTek Helio A22|
|No of cores||8 (octa core)|
|Colours||Light Green, Light Blue, Classic Black|
|Resolution||720 x 1600 pixels|
|Display Type||IPS LCD|
|Colour Reproduction||16M Colours|
|TouchScreen||Yes, Capacitive, Multi-Touch|
|Rear camera setup||Single|
|Rear Camera||8MP Resolution|
|Front camera||5 MP Resolution|
|Flash||Dual Colour LED Rear flash|
|Video Resolution||1920×1080 @ 30 fps|
|Camera Features||Auto FlashAuto FocusFace detectionTouch to focus|
|Battery Type and capacity||Li-polymer, 5000 mAh|
|Fast Charging||Yes, 33W|
|Internal memory type||32 GB, eMMC 5.1|
|Operating System||Android v12|
|Custom UI||Android Go|
|SIM Configuration||Dual SIM|
|GPS||Yes with A-GPS|
|Other Sensor||Light SensorProximity SensorAccelerometerCompassGyroscope|
|Warranty||1 Year Manufacturer Warranty|
|Extended Warranty||2 years Extended Warranty from the GoWarranty for the Redmi A1 phones|
The smartphone comes with a 10W power adapter, a micro USB cable, a SIM ejector tool, as well as a Quick Start Guide. This is not a small smartphone when you take it out of the box. The Redmi A1 is the size of a midrange smartphone, measuring 164.9 x 76.8 x 9.1 mm. When you hold the phone, it doesn’t feel like one of the cheapest on the market. Perhaps this is an indication of how far the entry-level category has progressed.
The overall design has been pared down and simplified. The back panel is made of plastic and has a textured finish that feels nice in your palm when holding the phone. The dual cameras, along with a dual-LED flash, are housed in a small squarish unit at the top right corner of the back panel. The Redmi A1 comes in three different colours: light green, light blue, and black. For this review, we used the light green variant, and the rustic colour complements the smartphone’s minimalist design.
The phone’s micro USB port and 3.5mm headphone jack are located at the bottom. The volume rocker and power key are located on the ride side. The SIM tray is moved to the left. The speaker grille is located on the phone’s top. The device lacks a fingerprint sensor.
The Redmi A1 has a 6.52-inch IPS LCD display with a resolution of 700 x 1600p. Many people who upgrade from a feature phone look for a large display, and the Redmi A1 does not disappoint in this regard. Redmi could have easily provided a smaller display while also slightly increasing other specifications, but they chose a 6.5-inch screen size instead. If you want to watch SD content on it, the display is adequate. There is a ceiling that the display reaches fairly quickly, and there isn’t much more you can get out of it.
In addition, the display has a refresh rate of 60Hz as well as a peak brightness of 400 nits. The scrolling experience is adequate, but the haptic feedback has been significantly increased. You may need to spend some time customising the phone to resolve this issue.
The MediaTek MT6761 Helio A22 processor powers the Redmi A1. When it comes to basic tasks such as browsing the internet, making video calls, using navigation, and so on, this processor performs admirably. The storage space available is 32 GB, with the option of 2/3 GB RAM. For this review, we used the 32 GB + 2 GB model.
One thing to keep in mind is that the Redmi A1 runs on Android 12 GO, which is a Google-designed operating system for low-end smartphones. There are barely any traces of MIUI on top of this OS. Apart from Facebook Lite, the UI is fairly clean, and there are no bloatware apps on the phone.
The Redmi A1 comes with a 5,000 mAh battery pack, which lasts a long time on a phone with minimal hardware and a stripped-down OS. The smartphone easily lasted two days with moderate use, which included taking photos, watching nearly two hours of content per day, texting on WhatsApp, browsing the web, as well as listening to music. More prudent usage can easily extend the battery backup to three days. The 10W charger can charge the smartphone completely in under 3 hours.
In terms of cameras, the Redmi A1 has an 8MP primary shooter as well as a depth sensor. You also get a dual-LED flash in the rear camera unit and a 5MP selfie camera in the display’s water drop notch.
The rear camera unit performs well in well-lit conditions but falls short in low-light situations. We’re not going to hold it against the Redmi A1, because no other entry-level smartphone offers that feature. The photos we took in natural light turned out quite well. The colours were vibrant, and the camera did an excellent job of capturing the important details.
The Redmi A1 can also record 1080p videos at 30fps from both the rear and front cameras. Time-lapse videos can also be captured. There is also the option to record a ‘Short Video,’ which is designed for shooting videos for TikTok or Instagram. The 5MP front-facing camera takes decent selfies without any added effects, which is a plus. Given that this is an entry-level smartphone, we were pleasantly surprised by the camera performance.
The Redmi A1 held up well after a week of heavy use. We strongly recommend it to buyers who are upgrading from a feature phone. Xiaomi has managed to include all of the essential features that buyers expect from an entry-level smartphone while maintaining performance. At Rs 6,499, the Redmi A1 may be an excellent buy.