Every time, Redmi’s Note series launches in the Indian market, the expectations and hype are on another level. And there’s a good reason for this. After all, the Redmi Note series is one of the biggest brands in the country. It drives a major chunk of volumes for its parent Xiaomi. More importantly, the Redmi Note series has evolved in a number of SKUs and titles, each covering a different price point.
And this is precisely why the Redmi Note 11T 5G launch feels a little underwhelming. Usually, Redmi launches Note with two or three variants together, at different price points.
This time there’s just the Redmi Note 11T 5G which offers a dual-camera at the back, 5G capabilities, and a much higher starting price of Rs 16,999. But is the new Redmi Note 11T 5G the right pick for you? Let’s find out in our review
Redmi Note 11T 5G specifications: 6.67-inch full HD+ display with 90 Hz refresh rate | Mediatek Dimensity 810 5G chipset | 6/8GB RAM+ 64GB or 128GB storage with expandable storage support | 50MP+8MP rear camera + 16MP front camera | 5000 mAh battery with 33W fast charging | Android 11 with MIUI 12.5 on top
Redmi Note 11T 5G price in India: Rs 16,999 for 6GB/64GB variant, Rs 17,999 for 6GB/128GB variant and Rs 19,999 for 8GB/128GB
I got the Redmi Note 11T 5G in Aquamarine Blue colour, and the shaded back is certainly striking. The phone has a glossy finish at the back and the camera bump is almost negligible, especially if I were to compare it to the Redmi Note 10 generation. The fingerprint scanner is part of the power button and responds very quickly to unlock the phone.
The phone has a headphone jack as well, and it comes with IP53 rating for dust and water resistance. No, this does not mean you can dunk the phone underwater, but it should be fine with some accidental splashes. Overall, the phone manages to keep a slim profile despite the 5000 mAh battery on board.
The phone has a 6.6-inch Full HD+, LCD display with a maximum 90 Hz refresh rate, though the default setting is at 60 Hz. I did switch to 90 Hz for the course of my review, though it’s not something everyone ideally needs.
The phone is powered by the MediaTek Dimensity 810 5G chipset with 6GB or 8GB RAM.
My review unit has 8GB RAM, and Xiaomi is also implementing the virtual RAM feature, where another 3GB storage space is allotted for RAM. One can find the feature by going to settings>Additional settings> memory extension. The phone has the extra RAM setting enabled by default.
The phone does hold up well in daily performance, be it with games such as Asphalt 9 or Alto’s Adventure, or even general browsing. There was no stuttering or lag, even when I opened as many as 32 tabs on Chrome, and switching between them was no problem.
Keeping multiple apps open was not a problem either. I did not notice any heating either when using the phone for prolonged gaming. Based on my experience, the phone is a good daily driver for regular users.
The battery life on the Redmi Note 11T 5G is also very good and should easily last more than a day with moderate usage and a whole day with heavy-duty usage. Xiaomi has bundled a 33W fast charger with this, which will get the phone to 50 per cent in just half an hour.
In fact, when I stepped out this weekend, I barely charged it for 20 minutes and did not bother to put it back on charge till late evening. Even with 50 per cent battery, I was confident the phone would not die suddenly on me, when I was using it for browsing, taking photos, etc.
The Redmi Note 11T 5G camera is 50MP+ 8MP and does not come with macro sensors or extra zoom or depth sensors, which has become a part of most budget phones. But this is not a deal-breaker in my view, given macro cameras on most budget phones are usually below average. The camera does come with the ability for up to 10X zoom. Till 4X zoom, the results are acceptable.
With the Redmi Note 11T, the dual camera delivers fair results in more scenarios. The colours are bright, perhaps a bit sharp, but the photos have ample details in them and are good enough for sharing instantly. However, with very bright reds, and purples, the colour reproduction is not so accurate. The selfie camera is not bad either, and while there is some skin smoothing happening, it is not over the top.
The display on the Redmi Note 11 5G is a bit underwhelming. I say this because of my experience with previous Redmi Note phones. I felt I had to constantly increase brightness when watching Netflix or even browsing the phone at night. It works fine in sunlight, but I would need to keep brightness at maximum for the display to be legible in very harsh sunlight.
The sound on the Redmi Note 11T could be louder. Especially when watching some Netflix shows I had to crank up the volume to full to get a sense of what was being said.
The camera does have some misses. First, the skin tones are on the redder side, and this was noticeable when I took my son’s pictures indoors with the device. The ultra-wide camera is not the most impressive and the drop in quality is noticeable, but this is what happens with most such cameras on budget devices. I would say keep your expectations on the lower side with this one. In some cases, I did have trouble with focus locking onto the subject.
The phone runs MIUI 12.5 and while Xiaomi is letting users uninstall some apps such as Mi Store, etc, I found I could not install apps such as GetApps or Mi Pay on the device. Also when setting up the phone make sure you switch off Glance for Mi so you are not bombarded with ads and random news snippets at the lock screen.
The Redmi Note 11T 5G is one of the few 5G-ready phones that the brand is offering in the under Rs 20,000 segment. The other option is the older Redmi Note 10T 5G, which launched in July. One thing to note is that rival Realme has more 5G-ready phones in the under Rs 20,000 segment, with Realme 8, 8s, Realme Narzo 30, 30 Pro, etc. In a way, I would call this Redmi’s effort to catch up and offer a 5G-phone to the customer looking for a device in the price bracket.
The device has good performance, battery life, and fast charging to offer. The camera, while good, is a bit underwhelming. Perhaps I expect more from a Redmi Note phone overall.
For those looking to upgrade their phones urgently, the Redmi Note 11T 5G can be on the list of possible options to consider. However, considering the full Note lineup will be here in another two months, I would suggest waiting and weighing your options, especially if you are in the market for a device under Rs 20,000.