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Here we have Xiaomi’s “lite” version of the budget-oriented Redmi series of smartphones. Introducing the Xiaomi Redmi 6A. What’s different from the Redmi 6? We’re here to compare both of them side by side and to help you choose between the Redmi 6 and Redmi 6A.

Thanks a bunch to Xiaomi Malaysia for provisioning us a unit of the Redmi 6A for this review.

Unboxing

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

Upon first glance, the box itself is red in color – pretty much the whole point of the Redmi series since the name itself is red.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

Behind the packaging shows a quick list of specs and there’s nothing much here.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

Opening up the packaging shows the phone itself right away. Interestingly, Xiaomi chose to highlight the 12nm process technology right away. Underneath the phone we can find the user guide and some the accessories under it.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

You literally just get the charger, a micro USB cable, and the phone itself. Nothing more than those things.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

Design

The Redmi 6A has a really simple design with a curved edges at the back. It’s nothing extraordinary and it still looks sleek enough for an everyday phone.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

The Redmi 6A that we have here is in gold color, whereas the front bezels are white in color.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

It sports a 5.45-inch IPS LCD display with 18:9 aspect ratio with 1440×720 pixels in resolution. Quite rare to see a 5.45-inch display with 18:9 aspect ratio, by the way.

Connectivity and ports

Around the upper left side of the phone, we can see there are two different trays for cards. The first slot is for your Nano SIM 1 and also the microSD card slot, whereas the second tray is for Nano SIM 2.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

It is not our first time seeing a smartphone with dedicated Nano SIM 1 + SIM 2 + micro SD card slots but separated to two different card trays. Remember the Samsung Galaxy A8 (2017)?

The Redmi 6A is a budget-oriented smartphone and there is no surprise in terms of other connectivity as well. It can support up to 802.11n WiFi at 2.4GHz and it does not have NFC or wireless charging.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

As for the buttons and ports, the Redmi 6A has all of the buttons on the right side.

The micro USB port is at the bottom and the loudspeaker is at the back of the phone. It’s actually pretty loud and has mediocre sound quality. The 3.5mm audio jack is at the top of the phone.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

If you realized, the Redmi 6A does not have a fingerprint sensor. However, the Redmi 6A does support face unlock and it works very well despite being an entry-level smartphone.

Display

Equipped with a 5.45-inch IPS LCD display with 18:9 aspect ratio, the Redmi 6A doesn’t have a beautifully crisp display as it only has 1440×720 pixels. However, the colors on the Xiaomi Redmi 6A actually looks pretty good. The contrast is great as well.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

Camera

Well, here’s the thing – the Redmi 6A is indeed an entry-level smartphone. It still has a camera that can take some okay pictures. Before getting into the samples, here is the list of specs for its cameras:

  • Rear-facing camera: 13MP f/2.2 with PDAF
  • Selfie camera: 5MP f/2.2

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

As usual, all of the pictures here can be viewed in all its glory (including some that aren’t shown here) at our Flickr album here.

Rear-facing camera

First of all, in bright daylight, the pictures are actually okay. In full auto mode with HDR turned off, it can take some good-looking shots for social media. However, I did realize some white balance issue when it comes to the patch of grass, Sometimes it gets it correctly, sometimes not.

IMG_20180802_161742

IMG_20180802_163014

When HDR mode is turned off, the picture immediately gets darker overall. I presume that since the sensor couldn’t brighten up the dark parts, the algorithm darkened up all the bright parts instead.

IMG_20180802_161754

If HDR mode is used for night shots, it gets noisy to be point where it’s unusable. Still, pretty good camera for budget phone like this.

IMG_20180802_212812

Selfie camera

To be honest, I rather use the rear-facing camera to take selfies. Take a look at this picture and you’ll get what I mean.

IMG_20180811_045959

Camera UI

In terms of UI, it is actually the same as the Mi A2 that we reviewed here. Of course, there are some missing features here and there – but I’m glad to see that the “straighten” feature is still here. Loving that feature.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A camera UI

And surprisingly the Redmi 6A has manual mode as well! You can tune the shutter speed and ISO according to how you like it – and that’s a big bonus!

Xiaomi Redmi 6A camera UI

Software

Even for an entry-level smartphone, it comes with MIUI 9.6.2.0 which is based on Android 8.1.0 Oreo. There are quite a lot of features here and there, and most of the core functionality of MIUI is still there.

Gestures are here as well – but there is no option to swap the navigation button positions. It’s forever stuck at Menu-Home-Back and there is no way to change it.

Performance

In the subject of performance, let’s first take a quick look at the list of specs that the Xiaomi Redmi 6A has:

  • 5.45-inch IPS LCD display with 18:9 aspect ratio and 1440×720 pixels
  • MediaTek Helio A22 chipset fabricated with 12nm process technology (learn more here)
    • Quad-core CPU with 4x Cortex-A53 @ 2.0GHz
    • PowerVR GE8300 graphics
  • 2GB RAM
  • 32GB internal storage
  • 3,000mAh battery
  • Android 8.1.0 Oreo with MIUI 9.6.2.0

Now, the Redmi 6A isn’t meant to be a performer that tops charts to begin with. Still let’s take a look at the benchmarks here.

Xiaomi Redmi 6 Redmi 6A 3DMark benchmark Xiaomi Redmi 6 Redmi 6A Antutu benchmark Xiaomi Redmi 6 Redmi 6A Geekbench benchmark

There are some sluggishness when it comes to performing everyday test – like loading apps and whatnot. The Helio A22 chip in the Redmi 6A isn’t that powerful to begin with.

Battery and charger

Having a 3,000mAh with such a chipset that is fabricated with 12nm process technology does point us to one direction – efficiency. Of course, the biggest factor here is MediaTek’s architecture design – and it’s safe to say that they do not disappoint.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

Take a look at how the Xiaomi Redmi 6A performs in our battery test.

Xiaomi Redmi 6 Redmi 6A battery life test

It can last a little over 10 hours – which is actually pretty good in everyday uses. You might need to occasionally top up some juice, but it should last you the majority of the day.

Charger

As for the charging part, it comes with a 5V 2A charger – but it doesn’t matter because from our test, the Redmi 6A takes the same amount of time to charge as the Redmi 6’s 5V 1A charger.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

In this graph we can see that the Xiaomi Redmi 6A can reach 50% battery in 60 minutes of charging and reaches 75% battery at 102 minutes. Not the fastest when it comes to getting charged, but it gets the job done.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A Charging curve

Wrapping up the Xiaomi Redmi 6A review

Being a smartphone that is priced at only RM399, this is indeed a good smartphone. Don’t expect it to blow your mind – but it does get the job done. Perhaps a phone for the elderly or those who just want a smartphone to text.

Xiaomi Redmi 6A

The Xiaomi Redmi 6A is available in 4 different colors – grey, gold, blue, and also black.

Nasi Lemak Tech Silver Award

Where to buy?

Over at Xiaomi Malaysia’s official LazMall store in Lazada!


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