Redmi Note 6 Pro review: Most notable upgrade is the quad camera system

The notch houses two front cameras, earpiece and an LED notification light.

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Price: Rs 13,999 (4/64GB)
Rs 15,999 (6/64GB)

Rating: ****


Specifications: Snapdragon 636 octa core, 4/6GB DDR4X RAM, 64GB storage (expandable up to 256GB, hybrid SIM slot), 6.26-inch IPS LCD (2.5D, 500nits, 19:9 aspect ratio, 2280 x 1080 pixels FHD+), 12 + 5MP dual rear camera, 20 + 2MP dual front camera, WiFi ac, BT5.0, 4,000mAh battery, 182 grams.

Pros: Familiar but attractive & durable design, includes DDR4X RAM, QC3.0 charging, IR blaster, good performance for most tasks, quad camera with excellent performance & unique portrait lighting effects.

Cons: Snapdragon 636 showing age, only one 64GB storage option, hybrid SIM tray (no dedicated micro SD slot), no QC3.0 charger in box.

The Redmi Note series is no stranger to success. It’s responsible for Xiaomi’s meteoric rise to the top, which they have maintained for 5 successive quarters now (data from IDC’s quarterly mobile phone tracker). The Redmi 5 series, which first launched in February 2018, sold more than 5 million units within four months of launch (and the Redmi Note 5 Pro continues to be on sale at the time of writing, till stocks run out).

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The Redmi Note 6 Pro (RN6 Pro for brevity) takes the formula of the Note 5 Pro and tweaks it to better suit the flavour of the season. You get a quad camera setup (2 front + 2 rear), P2i water repellent nano coating (not as good as proper water resistance but helps prevent corrosion in high humidity areas), slightly updated design and a new, larger display in the same form factor.

Unfortunately for some, this means taking the 18:9 aspect ratio screen and stretching it to fill the top corners — resulting in the infamous notch. Increasingly, the notch is falling out of favour and it doesn’t help that the RN6 Pro notch is quite large and obtrusive. The notch is wide for a reason though: it houses the two front cameras, earpiece, LED notification light, ambient light sensor and proximity sensor.

Oppo Find X, Xiaomi Mi 8 & Other Upcoming Phones Worth Getting Excited About
1/6
July is turning out to be one of the most interesting months for smartphone launches. We’re going to see a lot of action across price segments says Karan Bajaj, as he does a round-up of the most interesting ones. In Pic: Oppo Find X (L) and Xiaomi Mi 8 (R).
July is turning out to be one of the most interesting months for smartphone launches. We’re going to see a lot of action across price segments says Karan Bajaj, as he does a round-up of the most inte..
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The Find X was launched just a few weeks ago and India is expected to be amongst the first lot of countries to get it. The Find X has a beautiful glass body with a motorized camera module. The front has a 6.4-inch curved Amoled display (without a notch) giving it a screento-body ratio of 93%. Inside is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, 8GB RAM, 128/256GB storage and a 3,730mAh battery. The motorized camera module hides a 16MP + 20MP dual rear camera and a 25MP front camera. It also has a 3D face scanning face ID feature (with infrared emitters, similar to the iPhone X) and VOOC fast charge support. Other features include dual SIM slots, USB Type-C port and Android 8.1. Expected Price: Rs 60,000 onwards (Image: oppo.com)
The Find X was launched just a few weeks ago and India is expected to be amongst the first lot of countries to get it. The Find X has a beautiful glass body with a motorized camera module. The front ..
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The Zenfone 5Z will be the second smartphone to be available in India with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor. It has a 6.2-inch IPS display in 19:9 aspect ratio with a resolution of 2246 x 1080 pixels. The phone is expected to be launched with 6/8GB RAM and 64/128/256GB storage options. In the camera department, it has a 12MP + 8MP dual camera setup with OIS on the rear and a 8MP front camera. Other features include 3,300mAh battery with fast charge support, Hybrid dual SIM slot, expandable storage, rear fingerprint scanner, USB Type-C port, and Android 8.0 with Face unlock. Asus seems poised to take on OnePlus and we therefore expect them to undercut OnePlus prices by a significant margin, making it one of the cheapest Snapdragon 845 phones around. Price: Rs 29,999 onwards (Image: asus.com)
The Zenfone 5Z will be the second smartphone to be available in India with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor. It has a 6.2-inch IPS display in 19:9 aspect ratio with a resolution of 2246 x 1080 p..
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NEX is the other unique phone expected to arrive in India this month. Doing away with the screen notch, the phone has an 8MP selfie camera module that pops out on top. It has a 6.59-inch amoled display giving it a screen to body ratio of 91%. The phone comes in two variants: NEX A and NEX S — we expect Vivo to only launch the topend NEX S in India because they’re gunning for the premium market. The NEX S runs a Snapdragon 845 processor, 8GB RAM, 128/256GB storage and has a 4,000mAh battery with fast charge support. It also has a under screen fingerprint scanner, 12MP + 5MP dual rear camera with OIS, dual SIM slot, USB Type-C port and Android 8.1. Expected Price: Rs 50,000 onwards
NEX is the other unique phone expected to arrive in India this month. Doing away with the screen notch, the phone has an 8MP selfie camera module that pops out on top. It has a 6.59-inch amoled displ..
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Xiaomi’s previous premium device in India was the Mi Mix 2, launched last year. The company has announced the Mi 8 in China as their new flagship and it is expected that the phone will launch in India this month. The Mi 8 features a notched 6.2-inch amoled display in 19:9 aspect ratio and a 7000 series aluminium frame. It comes with an 3D Face unlock similar to the iPhone X (with infrared), rear fingerprint scanner, dual SIM support and runs the latest MiUI 10 based on Android 8.1. Hardware includes a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, 6GB RAM, 64/128//256GB storage and a 3,400mAh battery with Quick Charge 4.0 support. It has a 12MP + 12MP dual camera setup with OIS and dual pixel phase detection autofocus on the rear while the front has a 20MP selfie shooter. The Mi 8 is also the first phone in the world with dual-band GPS (purported improved accuracy of 3 to 5 times). Expected Price: Rs 35,000 onwards
Xiaomi’s previous premium device in India was the Mi Mix 2, launched last year. The company has announced the Mi 8 in China as their new flagship and it is expected that the phone will launch in Indi..
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Motorola’s E range of smartphones have always focussed on the budget conscious buyers. The upcoming smartphone in the range, Moto E5 Plus, features a 6-inch 18:9 aspect display with a resolution of 1440 x 720 pixels and weight of 197 grams. The primary reason for the 197 gram heft is probably the massive 5,000mAh battery. Other specifications include a Snapdragon 425 processor, 2/3GB RAM and 16/32GB storage. Motorola has also paid extra attention to the camera on the E5 Plus — it has a 12MP rear camera with f2.0 aperture, phase detection and laser autofocus. On the front, it has a 5MP camera with LED flash. Other features include fast charge support, dual SIM slots, expandable storage, rear fingerprint scanner and Android 8.0. Expected price: Rs 9,000 onwards
Motorola’s E range of smartphones have always focussed on the budget conscious buyers. The upcoming smartphone in the range, Moto E5 Plus, features a 6-inch 18:9 aspect display with a resolution of 1..
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That said, it is possible to hide the notch while still using the space to display notification icons — that’s the correct way to do it! Notch aside, there are some other nice upgrades. For example, the device can work as a WiFi repeater. Some hotel and airport WiFi networks will give you access for one device only. But with the RN6 Pro, you can further share the network with five additional devices.

The camera app has nifty editing features like erase (to remove unwanted parts of an image) and extended portrait effects (different lighting, light trails, bokeh effects) which we found quite entertaining. In our opinion, the best upgrade on the RN6 Pro has to be the camera. The rear camera has a wider aperture (f1.9 vs f2.2 previously), larger pixels (increased from 1.25 to 1.4 microns; same as many flagships), dual pixel autofocus (much faster focusing) and a larger sensor overall. Apart from that, there are new AI features that can recognize 32 categories of subjects (including some India-specific ones like cows — yes, cows).

The front camera has a slightly narrower f2.0 aperture but includes the 2MP depth sensor for portraits and all the same portrait effects. The many improvements to the camera result in visibly better photos, even in low light. If you buy this phone for one reason alone, let it be for the great camera — the best in this price segment. At a price of Rs 13,999, the RN6 Pro has some stiff competition (primarily the Realme 2 Pro).
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Realme, for the same price, gives you a device with a small dewdrop notch and a more powerful Snapdragon 660 processor. If you can increase your budget a bit, there’s the Moto One Power (Rs 16k for 4/64GB) with a massive 5,000mAh battery. If you dislike screen notches, Rs 16k also gets you Xiaomi’s own MiA2, which offers stock Android and Snapdragon 660.

For Rs 15k, you can also get the 4/64GB version of Honor 8x, which has a smaller notch, larger screen and a more beautiful glass design. All this doesn’t mean the RN6 Pro is bad — far from it actually. It’s still a great option in the Rs 14-16k range and a super upgrade from anything in the sub Rs 10k range. It’s just not the ‘no-brainer purchase’ that the RN5 Pro was.
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