Redmi Note 10S First Impressions: Promising Phone, But What's Different Here?

Redmi Note 10S First Impressions: Promising Phone, But What's Different Here?

Redmi Note 10S is the fourth variant in the Redmi Note 10 series. However, its pricing is closer to the Redmi Note 10 Pro. Does this make it a pointless addition between the already existing variants? I spent a couple of days with the review unit of the Redmi Note 10S Xiaomi sent us, and here are my first impressions of it.

Redmi Note 10S is an affordable phone that promises perks that even hardware mammoths in this price range miss out on. 

One of the first things you notice picking up the Redmi Note 10S is the aesthetics and premium feel that you rarely find in a phone in this price range. The gradient-finish back, premium looking camera bump, thin design and lightweight scream flagship aesthetics. These include specifications like an FHD+ AMOLED screen, stereo speakers, a slim 8.3mm profile, a 5,000mAh battery with 33W fast charging and even a 64MP primary camera.

This is still a polycarbonate back with a hard plastic frame, but it is one of the best looking and feeling ones. There are no creaky edges or mushy buttons. 

Speaking of buttons, there is a side-mounted fingerprint sensor on a raised power button, instead of the usual depressed design. I must say this is much easier to press on and the convenience quickly grows on you.

The stereo speakers also feature a unique design that gives them two different output heights no matter how you hold the phone in landscape mode. 

This should make blocking out both speakers while playing games or watching a video a very small probability. But I will be talking more about how good these speakers actually are in my full review.

The phone sports a 64MP main camera, an 8MP ultra-wide camera and two 2MP macro and depth sensors. While the last three sensors are pretty common in this price range, what I’m really interested to test out is the 64MP primary camera, a rare sight in this segment. There is also a 13MP front camera for selfies and video calls.

Redmi Note 10S features a MediaTek Helio G95 chipset, a powerful chipset in this range, coupled with either 6GB or 8GB RAM depending on which variant you get. You also get either 64GB or 128GB UFS 2.2 storage. There is a 5,000mAh battery with 33W fast charging, just like the Redmi Note 10.

On the software side, the phone comes out of the box with MIUI 12.5, which doesn’t bring many visual changes to MIUI 12 but does bring in more functionality, including the ability to get rid of non-core system apps you don’t need.

Other features include a USB-C port, a signature Xiaomi IR blaster on top, a centre-aligned punch-hole for the front camera, Gorilla Glass 3 protection, a 3.5mm jack, and Face Unlock. I will be testing out the performance, camera, battery life and other elements of the Redmi Note 10S to its limits over the next few days to determine if this is a worthy Note 10-series device in its segment. Stay tuned for our full review.