It’s no secret that Xiaomi has a lot of phones in India. And, more often than not, they are remarkably well-priced, tempting us to label them as the “best-valued smartphone” in the respective segment. But if there’s one Xiaomi phone that genuinely deserves this crown, it’s the company’s new entry-level Redmi 8A. Let us explain how.
Just a day back, Xiaomi showcased its concept-cum-futuristic looking Mi Mix Alpha with a wrap-around screen. It costs around $2,800. And while it can be looked upon as ‘innovation,’ this hardly affects our lives to the level technology can.
However, the thing that matters is when a piece of exquisite technology trickles down the price ladder to improve the experience of the more budget-friendly offerings, which are very likely to be purchased by masses.
For the context of smartphones in India, the budget segment constitutes over 90% of the entire sales volume, which is where brands try to focus on a hope to establish their stronghold over the market.
Xiaomi has been leading this movement, bringing multiple budget smartphones to India at various price points. It not only made Xiaomi the top-selling smartphone brand in India but also forced the competition to come down to its level of pricing.
Oppo severed its ties with Realme which is now among major players in the Indian smartphone market. Similarly, Samsung introduced the M-series, and Nokia brought different variants of its smartphone range, bringing much-needed competition to the mix.
All these combined efforts have made India one of the best smartphone markets for consumers, with more options, significantly lower than what one would see in the western countries. And as an extended result of more innovation and R&D, we are finally starting to see the budget and mid-range segments rub shoulders with much more expensive counterparts in a lot of aspects.
India is an extremely price-sensitive market when it comes to smartphones. With high demand around Rs 10,000, a segment that Xiaomi is very familiar, it has played a massive role in making India the world’s fastest-growing smartphone market.
Xiaomi Redmi 8A is the green light to a new generation of budget phones
Xiaomi brought the extremely affordable Redmi 8A to India. Starting at Rs 6,499, it brings a lot of mid-range exclusive features and specs. And unlike before, the changes are significant and meaningful in ways that are going to push the competition, and thus, the industry.
One of the key talking points of the Redmi 8A is the inclusion of a 5,000 mAh battery. It is one of the biggest in the segment and a boon for entry-level users in India where electricity may not always be reliable. Interestingly, Xiaomi did not stop there and also included 18W fast charging capabilities to the phone that too with a USB Type-C!
Not only are all three pretty rare features in this space, but are little habit-changing upgrades that many consumers will go through for the first time.
Moreover, the USB Type-C penetration had been rather low in the budget space, and the Redmi 8A is very likely to provide a much-needed boost to that. It brings a horde of hardware implications such as additional durability, faster charging and data speeds, and most importantly, a single cable that is expected to be adopted by most devices in coming years.
On the topic of meaningful additions, Xiaomi has also equipped the Redmi 8A with Gorilla Glass 5 on the front, added a grippy polycarbonate shell on the back and made the entire phone P2i splash resistant. These might not be changes that consumers will perceive from the get-go, but will bring peace of mind in case of accidents.
The phone’s hardware includes an efficient Snapdragon 439 chipset with 2GB/3GB of RAM along with 32GB of storage, a bigger 6.22-inch display with a dot-notch, a 12MP primary camera powered by the Sony IMX363 image sensor (also featured on the Poco F1 and the Pixel 3) with a sizeable 1.4μm pixel size, an 8MP front camera and FM radio.
For a starting price of Rs 6,499, you will be hard-pressed to find a better value offering currently. The Redmi 8A is bound to force the competition to bring well-specced and well-priced offerings similar to the Indian market soon.
We would recommend our readers to wait as long as you can before going ahead with a purchase decision, as you are very likely to get alternatives in the coming months… that’s just how fast and furious the Indian smartphone market is.