Xiaomi is one of the most productive smartphone manufacturers in India. By now we should be used to fast update cycles. The Redmi Note 8 Pro replaces the Redmi Note 7 Pro (review) that was launched in early March this year. As always, the company strives to stay one step ahead of the competition from companies like Realme, Lenovo, Samsung, Nokia and others. The big update to the Redmi Note 8 Pro is a 64-megapixel rear-view camera, but there's also a less visible change – the new MediaTek Helio G90T processor, which was introduced as a chip specifically for gaming smartphones. Read our first impressions of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro here.
Xiaomi's new Redmi Note 8 Pro was launched from SFr. 14,999 with 6 GB RAM and 64 GB storage. There will also be a version with 6 GB RAM and 128 GB storage for Rs. 15,999 and finally the top end version with 8 GB RAM and 128 GB storage for Rs. 17,999. Will powerful graphics and photo features at these prices help Xiaomi consolidate its position? Do buyers have a lot to inspire? We were able to spend a little time with the new smartphone and here are our impressions ahead of our full Redmi Note 8 Pro test, which will be released shortly.
The Redmi Note 8 Pro physically feels like a big, heavy phone. It weighs a hair under 200 g and is 8.79 mm thick, which is too much for some people to deal with. Not everyone will like the shiny chrome frame that runs around the sides of the body, and we found it a little too reflective and distracting at first. The screen has relatively narrow edges, but unfortunately the water drop notch cannot be eliminated at this price level.
The 6.53-inch Full HD + screen of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro looks bright and razor-sharp. On the front and back of the phone there is Corning Gorilla Glass 5 to protect against physical damage and a reading mode certified by TÜV Rheinland to reduce the blue light.
The Halo White Redmi Note 8 Pro device we could spend time with had a dazzling effect, similar to what we saw on the Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ (review) and some other medium-range devices recently launched. The cameras are arranged in two vertical strips; A large one is in the middle of the back of the phone and a small one to the right of it. The main bar protrudes slightly and is used to stabilize the phone when it is lying flat on a table. However, it is annoying if you hold the phone in landscape mode to play games.
The fingerprint sensor is located at the bottom of the main strip. It's smaller than usual, but very easy to get to because the strip is raised. You can find out what that looks like in our complete Redmi Note 8 Pro test. Xiaomi said that fewer cutouts give the glass more structural strength, which is a good thing.
On the left are two small compartments for two nano SIMs and a microSD card. Interestingly, the Chinese version of the Redmi Note 8 Pro that was introduced earlier doesn't have a microSD slot. This was added specifically for India. As usual with Xiaomi phones, there is an infrared emitter at the top for controlling devices. We also noticed a tiny notification LED to the right of the selfie camera. The rest of the design of this phone is quite normal – the buttons are on the right and the USB Type-C port, the 3.5mm audio jack and the speaker are on the bottom.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro here in Halo White color option, which has an iridescent effect
Xiaomi knows that the Indian market is very aware of the specifications, which is why the choice of the MediaTek G90T processor is interesting. MediaTek has claimed that the G90T can outperform Qualcomm's Snapdragon 730 and 730G processors in certain benchmark scenarios. Given the massive and growing popularity of PUBG Mobile and the general competition in India, we can assume that many buyers will be very interested in what the Redmi Note 8 Pro has to offer at its price.
For the primary rear view camera with 64 megapixels / 1.89, we can't say anything about the photo quality yet, but you can be sure that a full Redmi Note 8 Pro test is on the way, in which we will look at the latest technology , How well this sensor works in different situations and conditions. Even if you take 16 megapixel binned photos most of the time, such a high resolution should definitely help improve quality. This is a large number that will impress buyers and will keep Xiaomi at the level of its main competitor Realme.
The secondary camera in this phone has a 120-degree wide-angle lens and an 8-megapixel 1: 2.2 sensor, which may not be suitable for all conditions. Then there is a standard 2-megapixel depth sensor and a unique 2-megapixel macro camera. We have already seen such an implementation in Realme 5 Pro (Review) and found that it was a novelty. Nevertheless, the Redmi Note 8 Pro can keep up with the competition.
On the front, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro has a 20 megapixel 1: 2 camera with AI embellishment and a portrait mode. The rear main camera can record videos at up to 4K 30fps or 1080p 60fps. For super slow motion clips, you can also record up to 960fps at 720p.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro specifications
Other notable technical specifications of the Redmi Note 8 Pro include a 4500 mAh battery, an 18 W quick charge function, dual-band WiFi 802.11ac with a specially developed antenna and Bluetooth 5. Xiaomi has this Halo version of the phone in India White, gamma green and presented shadows black. Amazon's Alexa Assistant is also integrated, a first for Xiaomi.
MIUI 10.4.2 was run on Android 9 on the device we used, unfortunately not MIUI 11, which was also presented at the same start event, although we can expect an update by the end of this year.
Read our full review of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro shortly, where we will test the gaming performance and cameras of this phone, as well as general usability, battery life, screen, build quality, and more.