Xiomi has been generating a lot of buzz lately for providing quality phones with really low prices. Their latest offering is no different. Dubbed as the Red Mi 1S, the phone costs just half the price of other phones with similar specifications. But, is the low price enough to lure consumers into switching brands?
The Red Mi 1S is priced at the border of low-end to midrange smartphones, so it’s quite understandable that Xiaomi opted to use high-quality plastic on the phone.
The phone is very solid and sturdy that you get that feeling it will make a dent on the floor after a fall. It has that infamous Nokia 3310 build quality vibe to it. Seriously though, the build quality is excellent and you won’t hear any creaks when you try to apply pressure on it.
Also, the Red Mi 1s is one hefty phone weighing at 158 grams.
The front part is almost bare with the exception of the red capacitive buttons at the bottom part, the 4.7-inch IPS display (which will tackle more in a while) the 1.6-MP front-facing camera, the earpiece and a small LED notifications light located below the capacitive buttons.
Speaking of which, the capacitive buttons do not actually emit any light, so phone usage in a dark room takes getting used to. Personally, I’m not a big fan of the huge display bezels of the phone.
Though the phone looks like it sporting a uni-body, the back part, which carries the volume buttons and power button, is actually removable. Once you open it up, an orange colored battery will undoubtedly grab your attention.
Just above the battery is the dual SIM card slot, both GSM capable but only one with 3G functionality. You will also find a Micro SD slot capable of reading up to 32GB of memory. It is also here where you will find the 8MP camera and a LED flash.
The location of the speaker grille is located at the top right part, aligned with the camera — the first we’ve seen this. I find this location problematic as you’ll probably end up muffling the sound when you hold the phone horizontally, like when you’re playing a game. The Red Mi 1S also supports USB OTG functionality.
The Red MI 1S features a 4.7-inch IPS Display with 1280×720 pixel resolution and 312 PPI. The display has wide viewing angles, and colors are very vibrant. The glass protection of the phone depends on the market where it was released — either Asahi Dragon Tail Glass or Corning Gorilla Glass.
Performance wise, the phone is okay considering the cash you’re going to shell out. This is a quad-core phone (1.6ghz) and sports a Snapdragon 400 with 1GB of RAM, yet I still experience occasional lags when playing HD games.
Although still playable, HD games should be run on medium graphics to lessen or eliminate lags. Rather than blaming the hardware, I think I can point it on the software aspect as it still runs on Android Jelly Bean.
A software update should fix this. According to Xiaomi, the Red Mi 1S is going to be updated to MIUI version 6 sometime in the future.
Call quality is very good as it is crisp and clear on both ends. The speaker is not as loud as we want to, so using a headset is advisable. Headsets are not included in the package to help keep the price down.
At this price range, you won’t find better cameras on a smartphone. While most budget smartphones comes with 5-megapixel rear camera, the Red Mi 1S comes with an 8-megapixel snapper. The shutter is quite fast and there are lots of options like filters, panorama and HDR.
Results are very good at both indoors and outdoors and at par with some midrange to high end phones we’ve tested so far.
The Red Mi 1S is powered by a 2050 mAh battery and is enough to last you a day on heavy use. Test was done with Wi-Fi always on, some emails, text and calls. Social networking apps like Facebook and Twitter were also on push mode.
The Red Mi 1s runs MIUI V5 right out of the box. MIUI is a customized Android ROM that closely resembles Apple’s iOS in terms of design.
The biggest draw of MIUI is that it gives the users the ability to fully customized there phones by offering a themes market were users will find thousands of free and paid themes.
The Red Mi 1s is for those who are looking to try out a reliable smartphone but is restricted by budget. I liked the performance of the phone considering its price and the build quality is also impressive.
I?m not a fan of the overall look especially with the large display bezels but it should grow on users. I have no qualms on the camera performance, MIUI OS, and the overall experience of using the phone is very good.
It is truly one of the best phones on this price range.