Xiaomi launched its ultra-affordable Redmi 7 smartphone back in April, but it is still one of the top choices for sub-Rs 10,000 smartphones in India. The Redmi 7 is priced at Rs 7,999, which makes it hard to ignore this feature-packed budget smartphone either as a primary phone or a secondary one for those who have a flagship for the main use.
Whatever your reasons might be, Xiaomi Redmi 7 perfectly balances the price-to-performance ratio. After spending some time with this budget entrant, I find the Redmi 7 quite appealing as an overall package and not just for one or two particular features, which is interesting considering it only costs a few thousand bucks.
The first thing that didn't miss my attention was the design of the Redmi 7. That beautiful gradient back transitioning from black to red gives a classy look and I didn't even mind the polycarbonate back. There are Black, Eclipse Black and Comet Blue colours too, but the Lunar Red was my favourite.
Considering the price range, the gradient seems to be only on the back cover and the sides are matte black. There's discontinuation there, but it's not a deal breaker. Especially when you turn the phone over to find a massive 6.26-inch display with 1520x720 pixel resolution with Gorilla Glass 5 protection. I usually kept the phone along with some change and car keys, and the screen didn't seem to get scratched.
The display's aspect ratio is quite generous, thanks to the minimized bezels on the top and a notch. That doesn't make the visible bezel at the bottom go away. The display is bright for most cases, playing games, watching videos and browsing social media or texting friends, as long as you are indoors. The Redmi 7 is not the ideal phone to take out in the sun and use it without straining your eyes even at 100 percent brightness. And if you're wearing shades, forget about visibility. The glass is very reflective and makes watching multimedia difficult at times.
I did, however, love the camera and battery on this tiny powerhouse. The 4,000mAh unit is a generous offering and I couldn't have asked for more from a sub-Rs 10K smartphone. I did not need to charge the phone for a full day of extensive use, which includes calls, messaging, browsing social media, music and some videos during the commute. Playing games can shorten the battery life, but some mild gaming should take away too much power, so you're good for a whole day with the Redmi 7.
My only complaint was the microUSB port, which I understand justifies the price tag, but Xiaomi could bring some disruption here. Another pain point is charging that 4,000mAh battery, which easily took 120 minutes to reach 100 percent. I had to leave the phone to charge while working as it's not convenient to wait for hours together while the phone charged, especially if this the primary phone.
Moving on, the camera is where my money is well spent. If you're shooting during the day, the colours are more natural and have a balanced dynamic range. I wouldn't bet on low-light photography with the Redmi 7 as it picked up too much noise and focusing was a pain. But the portrait focus appears to get the background blurring quite right most of the time.
Here are a few samples I shot using the Redmi 7:
Selfies are particularly good on the Redmi 7's 8MP camera with nice punchy colours and details. There's portrait focus on selfie mode as well, which works well.
Finally, Xiaomi Redmi 7 comes with a Snapdragon 632 chipset and with 3GB RAM - the phone can do most of your day-to-day tasks with ease. There's a delay while launching apps or switching back and forth between apps one too many times. It seems the processor cannot handle too much strain. But as long as you're on a single app, you won't face any issues.
The MIUI interface is not my favourite but gets the job done. It is pretty straight forward and aesthetically clean, but also bags one too many bloatware apps (some might consider useful). Not too many complaints there, but nothing mind-blowing as well. Some apps also crashed after extensive use of the phone, which can be resolved by clearing the cache or closing background apps.
Xiaomi Redmi 7's fingerprint scanner is accurate and works like a charm. The face unlock also works decently, provided there's good lighting. I usually preferred using the fingerprint sensor over face unlock on this phone.
For Rs 7,999, you cannot go wrong with the Redmi 7. The camera is better than most phones in this price range and the rest of the specs are quite fine as well. The design is truly the standout point of the Redmi 7, making it the right choice for those who want to flaunt their phones and grab everyone's attention. Only you would know that it's a phone that doesn't cost a bomb.
If you need a better camera or a phone to smoothly play PUBG, I would say look for smartphones beyond Rs 10,000 range. Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro is a good option if you're keen on buying a Redmi phone.