The year 2015 was great for affordable smartphones, and it looks like the trend will continue in 2016. Lenovo is hosting an event on 5 January wherein it will unveil the successor to its highly popular K3 Note with notable improvements. Over the course of the last few days, Lenovo has been teasing key details of the K4 Note, which is building a lot of hype among consumers. With such hyped specs, Lenovo is upping the ante in the budget premium smartphone race.
There are a lot of companies selling affordable smartphones with premium features. Xiaomi is one such brand that competes against Lenovo in this category. In November, Xiaomi launched its Redmi Note 3 in China and touted the high-end specs offered at extremely low price. Indian availability of the handset is unknown, but consumers have shown extreme interest in the device.
If and when Xiaomi launches the Redmi Note 3 in India, it will have a tough battle with Lenovo's upcoming K4 Note. In preparation for that, here's a quick comparison of Redmi Note 3 against the teased specs of Lenovo K4 Note to help fans determine which smartphone is better.
Display and design
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 features a full metal body and rounded edges. The handset is 8.65mm thick and weighs 164 grams. The sealed unibody of the Redmi Note 3 houses the volume and power buttons on the right, a SIM card tray on the left, camera module and fingerprint scanner on the rear and speakers at the bottom of the handset. The Redmi Note 3 features a 5.5-inch Full-HD sunlight/night display and it supports reading mode.
Comparatively, Lenovo K4 Note comes with a metal frame and a curved polycarbonate back for comfortable grip. This is going to be a major upgrade from the K3 Note's plastic body. The K4 Note features a 5.5-inch Full HD IPS display with 178-degree viewing angle and 441ppi.
Processor, RAM and storage
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 has some killer specs under the hood. It is powered by MediaTek's Helio X10 chipset, 2GB DDR3 RAM and has 16GB storage. The handset also comes in a 32GB variant that packs 3GB RAM. It runs Android 5.1 Lollipop-based MIUI 7 OS.
Lenovo K4 Note is powered by a 64-bit MediaTek MT6753 octa-core processor, Mali T720 GPU, 3GB DDR3 RAM and has a built-in storage of 16GB, which is expandable up to 128GB.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 features a 13-megapixel sensor with PDAR 0.1s ultra-fast focus and dual-tone flash. On the front side of the device, there's a 5MP sensor with 36 smart beauty profiles.
Lenovo, on the other hand, offers a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera with dual-colour LED flash and PDAF. On the front side of the device, there is a 5-megapixel sensor for selfies.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 draws its power from a mighty 4,000mAh battery. Lenovo K4 Note's battery is smaller than the Redmi Note 3 but it is considerably reliable. The K4 Note packs a 3,300mAh battery that is expected to last up to 22 hours on 3G talktime.
Fingerprint sensor and other features
Fingerprint scanner is being widely adopted and no longer exclusive to flagship devices. Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 has a fingerprint scanner too placed at the rear side of the device just below the camera. Similarly, the K4 Note also has its fingerprint scanner at the rear.
Additionally, Lenovo K4 Note comes with NFC, a feature that has largely been left out by many brands like OnePlus. Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 also lacks the NFC feature, which allows easy sharing of files with a single tap between two devices.
Other notable features in the K4 Note include TheaterMax, which converts your regular movies, TV shows and games into a large virtual screen for a cinematic experience.
Release date and price
In China, Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 16GB variant costs RMB 899 and the 32GB model sells for RMB 1,099. Currency conversion leads us to believe the Redmi Note 3 will cost around Rs 9,100 in India, while the higher-end model will cost Rs 11,100. There is no word on Redmi Note 3's arrival in India. If it does plan to arrive, Xiaomi will need to settle its legal dispute with Ericsson.
As for Lenovo K4 Note, the affordable handset is priced just right to take on the affordable smartphones in India. The handset is available exclusively on Amazon India and starts at Rs. 11,999.
Update on 5 January, 2016 at 1:50PM: This article has been updated to include the official details of Lenovo K4 Note in its comparison against Xiaomi Redmi Note 3. The previous version of this story was based on K4 Note's rumoured and leaked specifications.