Xiaomi announces $150 Redmi Note 7 with 48-megapixel camera

Late last year Xiaomi president Lin Bin
an upcoming phone with a 48-megapixel camera, and
today the company has revealed it in full. Despite the
eye-catching headline spec, it’s turned out to be a product
under the entry-level Redmi brand called the Redmi Note 7.

Design-wise, it looks very similar to
Xiaomi’s smaller, low-cost Mi Play
announced a few weeks
back, with a circular display notch, a back panel with colorful
gradients, a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor, and rear-facing
dual cameras — one of which uses that much-vaunted 48-megapixel
image sensor and an f/1.8 lens, the other of which is 5
megapixels and used for depth information.

The camera can take photos with its 48 million tiny 0.8-micron
pixels in good lighting, or combine neighboring pixels for
what’s claimed to be the equivalent of a 12-megapixel photo
taken with larger 1.6-micron pixels. At half an inch across,
the sensor is physically quite a bit larger than what’s
typically found in smartphones, which should give it strong
light-gathering capability. Of course, hardware is only half
the story with phone cameras, so we’ll have to see how that
works out in practice.

Elsewhere, the Redmi Note 7 has a 6.3-inch 19.5:9 1080p screen,
a Snapdragon 660 processor, a 13-megapixel selfie camera, a
4,000mAh battery, USB-C charging, and a headphone jack.

Last week CEO Lei Jun announced that Redmi will now be operated
as an independent brand focusing on e-commerce and cost
efficiency, leaving Xiaomi to concentrate on mid-to high-end
phones and physical retail. Previous Redmi phones have been
hugely popular in India in particular, but until now Xiaomi
didn’t go out of the way to highlight the brand itself; now,
the Note 7 carries a new logo on the back saying “Redmi by

The Redmi Note 7 starts at just 999 yuan (about $150/Rs.
10,000) for a model with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, rising
to 1,399 yuan (~$200/Rs. 14,500) for 6GB/64GB. On stage Lei
made sure to compare the Note 7 to the two other 48-megapixel
phones announced so far, the 2,999-yuan Honor View 20 and the
3,399-yuan Huawei Nova 4.

The Redmi Note 7 will be available in China first, but should
make its way to India and Xiaomi’s other usual regions

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