Xiaomi may have started slow in rolling out phones for India in 2016, but just like Rahul Dravid, they have upped the ante. They recently launched their fourth smartphone for this year the Xiaomi Redmi 3S and 3S Prime. The major difference between the 3S and 3S Prime is that the former has a fingerprint scanner, more RAM and 32GB storage. We got our hands on the Redmi 3S Prime and here's what we think about it.
The Xiaomi Redmi 3S Prime is a metal body smartphone under Rs 10,000. That in itself is an achievement point unlocked by Xiaomi. The design lines are quite similar to the Redmi Note 3, only smaller and more compact. The Redmi 3S Prime is also nice to hold and comfortable when it's inside the pocket. The device is lightweight too, weighing at 142 grams. The fingerprint sensor, just like the Redmi Note 3, is placed at the back and is as accurate as it can get. It's fast too and has a negligible error rate.
It's tough to find a sharp and bright display in devices under Rs 10,000 but Xiaomi has somehow managed to pack in a 5-inch display with 1280x720p resolution with a pixel density of 296 ppi. Now this, on paper, might not sound great but then the display surprised us with great viewing angles and sharpness.
The Redmi 3S Prime is a dual-SIM phone with a hybrid SIM slot that's compatible with a 128GB microSD card as well. This 4G device is also the first in India to come with a 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 octa-core processor backed by 3GB RAM. The performance of the phone is smooth and it didn't give us any lags at all even when there were more than 10 apps running in the background. The performance on the Redmi 3S prime is by far the best in the under Rs 10K category in India.
The phone does come with MIUI 7 out-of-the-box on top of Android Marshmallow OS, but Xiaomi has promised that the phone will be getting MIUI 8 update on August 23.
One of the most unbeatable thing that we found on the Redmi 3S Prime was its massive 4100 mAh battery. Xiaomi has worked hard on optimisation for battery on the device and if we were impressed with the battery life of the Redmi Note 3, the battery on the 3S Prime blew our mind. The battery on the device lasted us for a day and a half.
Xiaomi has also packed in a 13 megapixel rear PDAF camera that is capable of shooting some decent images. It's almost at par with the camera on the Redmi Note 3. The images in daylight come crisp and in focus every time. Low light images are also decent. The device is capable of shooting some great macro shots as well.
What's Not So Cool?
The speakers on the Xiaomi Redmi 3S Prime are not exactly loud or clear. The company has given the back a bit of a bump so that you can hear your phone if it's lying on its back, but it's only good for hearing the ringtone when someone is calling you. If you like watching videos or playing music on your phones speaker, then the Redmi 3S Prime might disappoint you.
The front 5 megapixel camera on paper might sound great, but for selfies, the Redmi 3S Prime is just an average smartphone. The age detection software that's seen on many Xiaomi phones is a nice way to make you feel good about your age.
The Redmi 3S Prime also has it, but if you are in low-light it makes you age and if you are in a well-lit area while taking a selfie, it's only near accurate to your age. It's good to pull a prank on your friend but can be annoying if you click a lot of selfies.
The Xiaomi Redmi 3S Prime is one of the best phones to come in 2016, under Rs 10,000. Priced at Rs 8,999 the phone blows away its competition like the Micromax Unite 4 and Coolpad Note 3. Dare we say it, but we like this one even more than its bigger brother the Xiaomi Redmi Note 3.
The Xiaomi Redmi 3S Prime is a phone that has - performance by its side, a decent camera and a battery that will never give up on you. This is what makes it a complete phone under Rs 10,000. And, if your budget is even lower, you can get a Xiaomi Redmi 3S that comes with 2GB RAM and lacks a fingerprint sensor for Rs 6,999.
Watch below our conversation with Jai Mani from Xiaomi on the Xiaomi Redmi 3S.