Year after year, Xiaomi has come out strong in the Indian smartphone market and has set the benchmark standard in the budget segment. They have recently launched the Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 which is probably one of the best smartphone under Rs15,000. And now, they have launched the Redmi 3S Prime in the sub 10k segment which has a much stiffer competition. Can the Redmi 3S Prime can create the ripples as much as it predecessors? Let’s find out in the following review.
Redmi 3S Prime Review
Build & Design
At the first impression Redmi 3S Prime looks much like a smaller sibling of the Redmi Note 3. It has the same curved design and shares the same metal structure with a matte finish, both of which together offers a premium look. Excellent update over the previous Redmi series in this budget segment, which has a plasticky built.
The design is very similar to all the Mi smartphones we are familiar with. On the right side, we have the power and volume buttons, 3.5mm headphone jack and an IR emitter is placed on the top. The hybrid micro-SIM card tray is located on the left side and on the bottom side of the smartphone, we have the charging port which is the regular one (NOT a USB Type-C port) and the microphone.
On the front side, we have a front facing camera along with other sensors, a 5-inch display below which there are the capacitive buttons for Back, Home, and Recent Apps function. On the rear side of Prime 3S, we have the camera with LED flash and the fingerprint sensor followed by the Xiaomi logo and the speakers at the bottom.
Display & Specs
This budget Xiaomi smartphone has a 5-inch IPS display with a resolution of 1280×720 which gives a pixel density of 294 ppi. It packs a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 1.4GHz octa-core processor with an integrated Adreno 505 GPU. The Redmi 3S Prime has 3GB of RAM and 32GB of inbuilt storage expandable up to 256GB, which is at par with its competitors in this price segment.
The display of the Redmi 3S Prime is really good and has a good visibility in direct sunlight. Viewing angles are impressive and color reproduction is great that makes images appear sharp and crisp. The tone of the display is towards the cooler side but you can use the “Reading Mode” option to add a warm filter over the display. You also get another option called ‘Colours & Saturation’ using which, the white balance as well as color saturation, can be adjusted.
Features, Samples, Performance
The Redmi 3S Prime has a 13MP rear camera with f/2.0 aperture along with PDAF and LED flash. The camera took good images in well-lit conditions. The captured images were sharp with a good amount of detail and the colors were not over saturated. When the amount of light dropped, image quality significantly dropped with it. There was a lot of noise and grain even with the flash turned on, and the images clicked are not satisfying. Turning on the HDR mode did reduce some
There was a lot of noise and grain even with the flash turned on, and the images clicked are not satisfying. Turning on the HDR mode did reduce some noise though, but it’s not a good camera to be used in low light. It has additional features like face detection and panorama mode and you can tweak the ISO and white balance using the manual mode. There are 12 filters available for some fun effects, but that’s about what you get from this sub-10K device. Following are some of the photos we have captured with Redmi 3S Prime.
The front camera is 5 MP with f/2.0 aperture which clicked decent selfies. This camera is capable of recording 1080p videos, which is a big plus. It also comes with 36 beautification profiles to enhance the selfies and following are some of the images with the front shooter.
Benchmarks, battery Life, Audio
As you can see that the Redmi 3S Prime has good hardware specs. We used Geekbench for our benchmark tests and below are the results.
This benchmark test reveals that the Redmi 3S Prime isn’t a beast but a decent performer which is expected given its price. It can handle all the daily tasks with ease thanks to its huge RAM. Multitasking works smooth with multiple apps open in the background. There is no lag observed while browsing the internet, playing games or watching videos which is quite good. I played Asphalt 8 which absorbed all the juice of the smartphone as it really struggled to play the game on high quality.
But this is expected as this is a budget smartphone. The Redmi 3S Prime comes with a huge 4100 mAh battery which according to me is its best feature. This massive battery lasts for a couple of days easily on normal usage and for a complete day on heavy usage. Although it lacks quick charging feature, it has a 2A charger which charges the smartphone from zero to 100 in just over two hours.
Xiaomi doesn’t provide headphones with this smartphone which can be disappointing for some users. The speakers are quite loud and the sound doesn’t distort even at the full volume.
Xiaomi claimed that the Redmi 3S Prime was the first lot of smartphones having the Snapdragon 430 SoC. Combining this with huge RAM and a massive battery, Xiaomi has succeeded in making another best budget smartphone as the Redmi 3S Prime comes at Rs 8,999. There is literally no other smartphone that provides such amazing specs and good build quality at this lucrative price point.
So if you are on a budget and looking for a smartphone with good performance and manage with an okay camera, Redmi 3S is an absolute no-brainer for you!
Next on my list was to check whether the handset has heating issues when pushed to its limits. To my surprise, Redmi 3S Prime did not get as hot as other devices in the same price bracket, and is quite heat efficient. I even found it to be a better handset in handling heat when compared to the Redmi Note 3 during stress testing.