Xiaomi Redmi Note 7S review: A value-for-money phone with a 48MP camera
Product: Redmi Note 7S
Key specs: 48-megapixel and 5-megapixel AI dual-rear camera, Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 SoC, 4,000mAh battery, 13-megapixel selfie camera, 6.3-inch full HD+ dot notch display, 3GB/4GB RAM, 32GB/64GB storage, fingerprint sensor
Price: ₹10,999 (base model)
Xiaomi over the years has continued to bring features from premium phones to its mid-range and budget phones. Until recently it focused mainly on matching chipset and RAM capabilities. Now, it's improving in the camera and design departments as well. Take Redmi Note 7 Pro for example, a ₹13,999 phone with gradient design, Snapdragon 675 chipset and 48-megapixel camera.
Redmi Note 7 Pro is not a one-off phone. The company recently launched Redmi Note 7S in India. Priced at ₹10,999, Xiaomi's latest smartphone also features 48-megapixel rear camera (with a different sensor) and comes with Snapdragon 660 octa-core processor clocked at 2.2GHz.
In many ways, Redmi Note 7S is a repackaged Redmi Note 7 Pro. In fact, it looks exactly like the Pro model. This is not negative, at all. You get a colourful back panel with gradient design and Gorilla Glass 5 protection - rarity in this segment. The phone is 8.1mm thick and weighs around 186 grams - on par with the competing phones like Realme 3 Pro (8.3mm thick and 172grams).
Xiaomi Redmi Note 7S retains the same 6.3-inch full HD+ display with dot notch on the front. The cut-out is quite small and very little distracting as seen in the Redmi Note 7 Pro. The display quality renders decent legibility outdoors and indoors. The auto-brightness works very fast. From browsing to streaming videos, Redmi Note 7S display handles everything with ease.
The much talked about 48-megapixel camera is based on Samsung's GM1 sensor, considered slightly inferior to Sony's IMX586 sensor that runs on Redmi Note 7 Pro. Photos taken from Redmi Note 7S don't really make you miss the Sony sensor much.
ALSO READ: Xiaomi Redmi Note 7S vs Redmi Note 7 Pro
Just like RN7 Pro, you have to manually enable 48-megapixel camera mode. Images taken in daylight retain their real life-colours. Lowlight photos are equally decent with minimum noise. That said, don't expect the camera to match the quality of OnePlus 7 Pro or Huawei P30 Pro or Samsung Galaxy S10. But be assured, it's one of the best in this price segment.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 7S runs on Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 processor clocked at 2.2GHz. Xiaomi pointed out its maxed clocked version of the chipset, unlike what other companies offer in this segment. Coupled with 3GB/4GB of RAM, the phone handles day-to-day tasks such as browsing, music streaming, movie streaming and instant messaging. The phone is pushed to its limits when you play high-end games like Marvel Contest of Champions and Injustice 2. Graphic-intensive games do take a toll on the phone. It's not a gamers' paradise but it's not bad either. The battery back up on lighter usage is pretty much on par with our expectations - almost a daylong usage. If you're a power user, we recommend you to carry the charger.
At ₹10,999, Xiaomi Redmi Note 7S is a complete package. From performance to camera, there's barely anything to nitpick. 3GB RAM, however, may be too little for some power users. You can consider the higher variant that costs ₹2,000 extra. If you have another ₹1,000, go for the Redmi Note 7 Pro.