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The best budget smart phone for selfies?

Xiaomi is the king of low-budget smartphones in India, period. Every new phone they launch is being eaten by the public as if they were offering it for free. Here's a number for you: Xiaomi sold 9.2 million phones in India in the last financial quarter. To put it in perspective, 100,000 smart phones are sold every day. Well it looks like Xiaomi wants to increase that number exponentially this quarter as they have just launched a new budget smart phone called Redmi Y1 which is being marketed as the selfie smart phone. The nickname of the selfie smart phone is the first in a Xiaomi device and therefore in this article we are going to put Redmi Y1 to the test to see if it deserves your attention and your money. So if you are planning to buy this smart phone please read our review to find out if Xiaomi Y1 is the best budget selfie smart phone or not:

Redmi Y1 Specifications

Before we get into the actual review itself, let's get the hard truths, i.e. out-of-the-way specs. You can check all the hardware and software details in the table below.

Dimensions 153 x 76.2 x 7.7 mm (6.02 x 3.00 x 0.30 in)
Weight 153 g
Monitor 5.5 inch IPS LCD capacitive touch screen (720 x 1280 pixels)
Processor Qualcomm MSM8940 Snapdragon 435 (Octa-core 1.4 GHz Cortex-A53)
Storage 32GB / 64GB
Primary Camera 13 MP (f / 2.2 aperture) with phase detection autofocus, LED flash
Secondary Camera 16 MP with f / 2.0 aperture
Battery 3080 mAh non-removable lithium ion battery
Operating System MIUI 9.0 runs on Android 7.0 (turrn)
Sensors Fingerprint (rear mounted), accelerometer, turn, proximity sensor, and compass
Connectivity Wi-Fi 802.11 b / g / n, Wi-Fi Direct, access point / GSM / HSPA / LTE
Price INR 8.999 / INR 10.999

What's in the box

Xiaomi is known to include minimal accessories with its smart phones, and the Redmi Y1 unpacking was the same. The box is very nice on the outside . The red and white color scheme is very nice to see, however the interior of the box is a great thing. There are compartments with nothing inside them . I seriously thought something was missing from my box, but it turned out that the case was the same with other people. Here is a list of what you get inside the box:

  • Redmi y1
  • Power adapter
  • Micro-USB to USB A charging cable
  • SIM ejector tool
  • Paperwork

Design and build quality

If you look at the device, see that the Redmi Y1 follows the design language of its predecessors . Although the Y series is a new line from Xiaomi, the design language remains the same. But that is not necessarily a bad thing. The smart phone is good to look at and feels great in your hand. The part front of the smart phone houses a 5.5-inch IPS panel flanked by the selfie camera and caption buttons at the top and bottom respectively. However, the buttons are not backlit, which is a shame.

The back of the phone houses a quick fingerprint sensor along with the main camera. The right side of the phone has the volume control and the power button, while the SIM tray goes to the left. The bottom has a single power speaker and a micro-USB port for charging, while the upper part contains the headphone jack and the infrared emitter. For a phone of its size, Redmi Y1 is quite light and weighs only 153 grams . The weight distribution is also very good and therefore the phone really feels good in the hands.

However, not everything is here. Although the phone feels good in the hands, you cannot escape the plastic structure of this phone . Both the back plate and the sides are made of plastic, which tarnishes its good build quality. I don't see this phone holding up well over time. A major complaint I have with Redmi Y1 is the SIM card tray . Since the phone supports dual-nano SIM along with a microSD card slot (which is good), the SIM tray is very long. Nevertheless, the tray is made of plastic and it really feels fragile . I really felt like I was going to break it when I inserted my SIM into the phone, so consider it as a fair warning.