Gradually, one has to ask oneself again whether it is at all justified to buy a thousand-dollar smartphone from Samsung, Huawei, or Apple. Because Xiaomi's subsidiary brand Redmi has high-end technology at an absolutely incredible price in its repertoire with the new Note series. We take a look at the Redmi Note 9 Pro and Note 9 Pro Max.
How does Xiaomi do it? This question has probably been asked by numerous tech fans and the three major smartphone manufacturers Samsung, Huawei, and Apple, especially over the past two years. The Chinese brand, which has long since ceased to be an underdog in the field of "Chinese mobile phones", has become an established tech brand. This has been the case in China for a very long time - almost all of the most popular technical items used there come from Xiaomi, or sub-brands. Household appliances, e-bikes, treadmills, televisions, and smartphones. This is probably the reason why Xiaomi is able to keep prices so incredibly low in European markets - and why these fast-growing manufacturers are becoming extremely dangerous for the established elite.
Already with the Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro, the company proved that a smartphone with top features does not need to cost $1,000 or more, contrary to the pricing of leading brands. It is probably only a matter of time before Xiaomi will offer its premium folding phone for similarly low prices in Europe. Then, at the latest, Samsung and Co. will have to rethink their approach.
But before introducing a foldable phone, Xiaomi has now introduced a classic smartphone with its subsidiary brand Redmi: the Redmi Note 9 Pro and Redmi Note 9 Pro Max. Both devices are settling in, at least specs-wise, the upper mid-range segment. The name affixes confuse because of the identical case size. The differences can be found in the built-in cameras.
So both models of the new Redmi Note series come with a large 6.67 inch IPS screen with a resolution of 2,400 x 1,080 pixels. For the selfie camera, a small hole has been punched in the middle of the display at the top. Instead of an in-display fingerprint sensor, Redmi uses a physical sensor on the side of the housing. Inside, a Snapdragon 720G Octa-core processor clocked at a maximum of 2.3 GHz runs the phone. Power is supplied by the ample 5,020 mAh battery, which can also be quickly recharged with a 33-watt quick charger.
Distinguishing the Redmi Note 9 Pro and Redmi Note 9 Pro Max
We see the Redmi Note 9 Pro Max as the premium model in the range. This is because a 32-megapixel selfie camera is already used at the front (compared to a 16-megapixel selfie camera in the Redmi Note 9 Pro) and at the back, the Xiaomi subsidiary relies on a 64-megapixel camera with a large f/1.89 aperture, an ultra-wide-angle sensor with an 8-megapixel resolution with f/2.2 aperture, and a 5-megapixel macro camera and a depth sensor with 2 megapixels. Especially cool for this price is that 4K videos at 30 frames per second are possible, as well as taking photos in RAW format. A feature that hasn't been found in a smartphone this cheap so far.
The camera of the Redmi Note 9 Pro comes with marginally slimmed-down technology. Instead of the 64-megapixel camera, a 48-megapixel sensor is used as the main camera with f/1.79 aperture. The ultra-wide-angle lens, macro camera, and depth sensor are identical to the Max model.
While the Redmi Note 9 Pro Max is available in three available memory variants: 6GB of RAM/64GB of storage, 6GB/ 128GB and 8GB/128GB, those interested in the Redmi Note 9 Pro can only choose between the two variants 4GB/64GB or 6GB/126GB.
Redmi Note 9: prices and availability
Both Redmi smartphones are scheduled for release on the Indian market at the end of March. The Redmi Note 9 Pro costs the equivalent of about $170 (the cheapest version). The Max model is expected to enter the market for under $225. If and when, and at what price, the Redmi series will be released in other regions remains to be seen.