Mobiles & Tablets

Review: Xiaomi Redmi 2

R Dinakaran | Updated on: Mar 25, 2015
Mi Table

Mi Table

Table

Table

bl26_tech_redmi2.jpg

bl26_tech_redmi2.jpg

Redmi 2 takes aim at the Moto E with similar pricing and more value

Xiaomi has gone places ever since it launched its first phone in India. The Redmi 1S launched just a year ago to kept selling out in seconds in the Flipkart flash sales. But the model was abruptly withdrawn, only to be relaunched in a better version and with a new name Redmi 2.

The Redmi 2 is more compact and slightly lighter than its predecessor, though the display size and the resolution is the same (4.7 inches). The OS this time is more advanced - MIUI6, the same version that came with the MI4. The beautiful UI is one of the strong points of Redmi 2.

Only the 8GB version (1 GB RAM) version of the Redmi 2 has been launched now, with the promise of a ‘limited’ release of the 16 GB version (with 2 GB RAM)

It is nice to see a phone with removable battery (which also means its back cover is removable) which is becoming a rarity nowadays. The back cover also comes off quite easily.

The white cover has an engraved MI logo at the bottom and the camera, flash and speaker grill are located next to each other at the top. There are capacitive controls that line the bottom in the front, but, though they are back-lit, they are not visible without external light.

The left side is blank with no buttons. On the right are the power and volume rockers. At the bottom left is the micro-USB port. We have to remove the cover and also the battery to access the two SIM slots and the micro-SD slots, which means the SIMs are not hot swappable.

Though standard MIUI ROMs come with Mi Market and also replace Google services, thankfully this version has all the Google apps and services, including the Play Store. The confusing Mi Market with confusing Chinese characters is absent.

The MIUI shows no lag - even though this is an entry-level phone.

Also, the MIUI does not have an app drawer. All the apps are on home screens like in iOS. This could either be seen as an advantage or disadvantage depending on individual users’ comfort levels.

One small irritant is that we will need multiple swipes to access the quick settings as the swipe down first shows the notifications. Swiping to the left gives access to the quick settings and the settings. Yes, you have the settings key to dive straight into settings, but accessing the quick settings is not really quick.

The phone comes pre-installed with Google, SwiftKey and Fleksy keyboards. The camera does a pretty decent job, and is one of the best for an entry-level phone. One good thing about the selfie feature is the countdown that is displayed near the camera lens. As users watch the countdown, it appears as if they are looking at the camera.

The camera has several pre-filters and also has panorama and HDR mode. Settings can also be adjusted manually for ISO and white balance

The Redmi 2 has a slightly bigger battery than the first generation device and we got one-and-a-half days of performance, after a few voice calls, and multiple open apps that connected to the net, including two email apps. Setting up email (even Exchange) is easy since Mi stores crowdsourced user data on email servers.

One important feature is the Lite mode. With huge icons and typefaces, which can be particularly helpful for those (like elders) who find modern touchscreen phones difficult to handle.

The Redmi 2 is currently one of the best entry level phones in the market. It has a pretty good camera for the price and also 4G support.

₹6,999

Love: Screen, battery life, camera, MIUI, removable battery, expandable memory slot

Hate: Difficult-to-access quick settings, lack of app drawer

Published on January 24, 2018

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