There are a lot of smartphones that have been launched in the market over the past couple of months. However, one of the most surprising launches this year is that of the low-cost Xiaomi Redmi 1S. It was not expected this fast and this soon. That is not even the craziest part -the phone has a remarkably cheap price tag coupled with amazing specifications. Is it a case of the perfect phone or is it just too good to be true?
The Build and Design
The Redmi 1S is built out of plastic. The front of the screen has a 1.6 megapixel camera, a sensor and ear piece. At the bottom of the screen are the home, the main menu and back touch keys. These keys are not back-lit, so it does take time to get used to them. Below the main-menu key is a little notification LED.
At the back of the device is a secondary noise-cancellation microphone, the 8 megapixel rear camera, LED flash and rear speaker. The back is removable and inside the back of the device are the full-size sim slots with sim 1 supporting 3G and sim 2 being restricted to 2G. Right below them is the replaceable 200mAh battery.
The top of the device is a 3.5mm headphone jack, the volume rockers and the power buttons to the right, primary microphone, and micro-USB port at the bottom and the left is empty. The Redmi 1S is not too heavy and feels solid. Since the sides are curved, they manage to hide the 9.9mm thickness. There are, however, no issues with grip and you can comfortably use it with one hand.
The device comes with a 4.7 inch, 720p display. It is covered with a Corning Gorilla glass. The IPS LTE display is good and the 720pixels spread over the 4.7 inches gives it a pixel density of 312 pixels per inch. It is bright, sharp enough and reproduces colors quite accurately – enough for its acceptable viewing angles. The screen is, however, a fingerprint magnet and is too reflective.
Under the Hood
The Redmi 1S has a Snapdragon 400 chipset. It also has a cortex A7 CPU which is clocked at 1.6 GHz – this is a higher clock speed than many other devices of the same range. This is coupled with the Adreno 305 GPU and 1GB RAM. The phone, as expected, handles most games well even the denser ones. Audio levels via the rear-speakers are average at best, whereas call quality and audio via the 3.5mm headphone jack are very good.
The 8 megapixel rear-view camera spots a 28mm wide-angle lens with an f/2.2aperture. This camera can shoot some really good pictures. Its picture quality is at par with some flagships that were introduced some years back. Images are detailed, noise is kept to a minimum, color production is spot-on and micro-shots produce beautiful photos thanks to the wide aperture.
Additionally, this camera can also shoot 1080p videos at 30fps. Software stabilization is good and results very detailed.
The Xiaomi Redmi 1S has a price tag of about £60 or $100.