Xiaomi has today announced the launch of its latest selfie-centric smartphone, the Redmi Y2, in India. The smartphone comes with a price tag of Rs 9,999 for the 3GB RAM variant, while the 4GB RAM option is priced at Rs 12,999. The phone will be exclusively available on Amazon from June 12.
With this, Xiaomi is strengthening its position as a brand that delivers some good selfie smartphones. The brand debuted the new Y-series last year with its maiden Redmi Y1 and Redmi Y1 Lite. Xiaomi has added a slew of new features on the latest Redmi Y2 and it comes with the new 18:9 display, improved cameras and Android 8.1 Oreo, based on MIUI 9.5. But the question here, will it be able to live up to the expectations of the selfie enthusiast crowd? We got some time to spend with the device and here’s what we think of it.
Design and Display
The latest Redmi S2 has definitely taken some design cues from company’s famous, Redmi Note 5 Pro. Whether be it the placement of vertically-aligned dual rear cameras or the front panel, the phone looks a tad similar to the Redmi Note 5 Pro. However, there are some differences with the placements of antenna bands at the back. There are two lines running across the top and bottom panel, which gives a pretty good look.
The front panel bears the large display with the front-facing camera along with earpiece and selfie flash on the top, while the navigation buttons are on-screen. The right houses volume controls and power on/off button, while the left bear’s dual-SIM slot and a dedicated micro SD card slot. The top houses a mic, IR blaster and headphone jack, while at the base, there is a micro USB port flanked between two speaker grilles. The back houses vertically-aligned dual rear cameras along with fingerprint sensor. That said, the company has given a metallic finish at the back, though it features a plastic body. The smartphone is certainly easy to hold and the light enough to carry around.
Coming to the display, the Redmi Y2 features a 5.99-inch HD+ display with a screen resolution of 1440 x 720 pixels. The phone comes with a bright display and you thank the 450nits brightness for that. It also features 1000:1 contrast ratio along with 70.7 per cent NTSC colour gamut. This should ideally translate to vivid colour output and it surely lives up to it. We will talk more about this in our upcoming review.
Now, coming to the major highlight of the smartphone, the Redmi Y2 features a 16-megapixel selfie camera f/2.0 aperture, AI Beautify 4.0, Face Unlock and Super Pixel. For the rear, there is a dual-camera setup with a combination of 12-megapixel primary lens and 5-megapixel secondary lens. The key takeaway here is the new Beautify 4.0 and Super Pixel mode. Starting with the former, the company claims that it is optimised for Indian skin and enhanced the skin texture without removing your beard.
Coming to Super Pixel, it basically combines four pixels into one to give one large 2.0-micron pixel. This should ideally improve low-light camera performance. During our brief testing, we found out the selfie camera does click some good photos when the lighting is good. There is also a portrait mode, which works fine in our initial testing. So, we suggest you hold your horses till the time we test the camera in different lighting situation.
Hardware and Software
The Xiaomi Redmi Y2 is powered by an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor along with Adreno 506 GPU. The phone is backed by a 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage, while there is another variant with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage. The memory can be further expanded up to 256GB via micro SD card slot. That said, it seems that the brand is stuck with the Snapdragon 625 processor lot as we have seen a lot of devices off lately that comes with the same processor. However, still considering the price range, the processor seems to be better than the rest of the competition. However, still, you can get an Asus Zenfone Max Pro M1 which comes with better and newer processor.
Coming to the software, the Redmi Y2 comes loaded with Android 8.0 Oreo with company’s custom user interface MIUI 9.5 running on top of it. The user interface now comes with some interesting features. For, example, the brand has introduced gesture controls, which is although a blunt rip-off of iPhone X gesture-based navigation, it is quite useful. A simple swipe up from the bottom of the screen will take you to the home screen, swipe up and hold for recent apps and swipe left or right to back. We will talk more about MIUI 9.5 features in our review.
Battery and Connectivity
On the battery front, the Redmi Y2 features a 3080 mAh battery which the company claims can last a full day under normal usage. On the connectivity front, it features 4G VoLTE, Bluetooth 4.2, WiFi, GPS, GLONASS, dual-SIM, 3,5mm audio jack and micro USB 2.0.