Unbeatable in the entry-level category since its arrival in France, Xiaomi hits hard again with the Redmi Note 11, a smartphone sold between 200 and 250 euros. At this price, it offers features worthy of models sold twice as much. We tested it.
How long will it take Xiaomi to sell as many smartphones as Samsung or Apple? Present on the French market since 2018, the Chinese brand has recorded incredible growth every year and is gradually approaching the best-known duopoly in the industry. The only flaw in its strategy: Xiaomi earns less money than its rivals. It owes its success to more affordable mobile phones, which earn less per sale than their competitors. Does matters! For now, Xiaomi favors quantity over everything else. Only market share matters.
What is the best Xiaomi smartphone worth 200 euros today? To find out, we wanted to test the Redmi Note 11, the brand’s reference smartphone. You will see that it does not have much to envy certain products that are sold much more expensive.
A disturbing fluidity
We tend to think that cheaper smartphones are slow, which is generally true. Fortunately, there are some exceptions, including this Redmi Note 11. Some products receive preferential treatment from their manufacturers and are entitled to an upgrade in terms of components. This is the case of the Xiaomi smartphone that, with its Snapdragon 680 processor (without 5G), goes almost as fast as some smartphones sold at 400-500 euros. It’s almost unsettling when you know the price of the device, especially since the smartphone’s display has a 90Hz refresh rate. The Redmi Note 11 is fluid, sometimes more so than a smartphone like Apple’s iPhone SE.
If the Xiaomi interface still needs some adjustments to flirt with those of Samsung, Apple or even Oppo (there are too many pre-installed applications, as well as hidden ads), the Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 offers a user experience that is light years away. those offered by some Wiko or TCL mobiles. Xiaomi has this advantage over the competition, it is not afraid to lower prices and make little money, as long as it allows it to win new customers. As long as you stick to this strategy, entry-level consumers will be the winners. Eventually, though, it’s likely to try to push you towards its more expensive phones.
Of course, if we welcome the fluidity of navigation of the Redmi Note 11, let us specify anyway that the latter is only visible for the most basic tasks. Switching apps, browsing social media, or making video calls isn’t a problem, but the same can’t be said for some more demanding activities. If you want, for example, to play in high resolution, the Redmi Note 11 will not offer the same quality as some more powerful mobiles. But his target is not necessarily the one who plays the most.
OLED, battery, fast charge… A solid record for the Xiaomi Redmi Note 11
The other strong point of the Redmi Note 11 is its screen. For the second year in a row, Xiaomi is equipping its entry-level smartphone with an OLED panel, a feature the industry has long reserved for the high-end. So certainly, an OLED screen at 200 euros is less good than an OLED screen at 1000 euros, but it still offers a contrast ratio well above that of many mobile phones sold twice as much. Here again, we imagine that Xiaomi bites into its margin for a matter of image. From the €200 OLED to the €500 LCD from Apple, the symbol is strong! Everything is even more satisfying since the smartphone’s 6.43-inch screen is very pleasant to use, with a rare Full HD + definition at the entry level.
The rest of the features are equally exciting at 200 euros. You can choose between 64 GB (199 euros) and 128 GB (249 euros), the smartphone comes with a 33W charger (we recover 50% in 30 minutes), it has a jack, it is compatible with NFC and it can be unlocked thanks to a sensor of fingerprints on the side. How not to want to recommend this device to those who have a small budget? He is so complete.
At the level of autonomy, and despite its reasonable weight (179 grams), the Redmi Note 11 has a high-capacity 5,000 mAh battery. In view of its low power consumption, it is doing like a king. We have not broken down once in the day with this device.
Camera: Pretty Good Mention
The only real weak point of the Redmi Note 11 is perhaps its camera, and again. On the back of the smartphone, in a block that seems quite unsightly to us, there is a 50 Mpix sensor (module opening at f/1.8) and an ultra-wide-angle camera (8 Mpix, f/2.2). There are also two other sensors to look nice (macro and depth), but, let’s face it, they only serve to lengthen the technical sheet of the smartphone. They are useless.
By day, like most mobiles today, the Redmi Note 11 does very well. At night, unsurprisingly, this is where he has the most difficulty. Photos are noisy and light management is sometimes poor. We also noticed some slowness when moving from one module to another, but is it really surprising? Or problematic for its price?
If we can logically hope for better, people looking for a real photophone will probably turn to devices dedicated to that (like Google’s Pixel 4a or its possible successor). At 200 euros, the Redmi Note 11 does the job. It doesn’t stand out, but it will fix problems when needed.
Without 5G and other small concessions
What else can we blame the Redmi Note 11 on? In itself, not much. Apart from its somewhat violent vibrator (vibrates strongly) and its 5G incompatibility, which is probably not the main criterion at 200 euros. Otherwise, the smartphone is very complete. Without being the best at anything, he manages to be very well balanced at all times.
We liked it
Incredible value for money
an OLED display
Much smoother than some competitors
we liked it less
Night photography is not good.
How could someone speak ill of the Redmi Note 11? If it cost 400 euros, we would already say of this smartphone that it is an excellent product for those who are looking for a well-balanced device, with a nice OLED screen, good features, high-level autonomy and performance capable of satisfying their needs. needs. Problem: the Redmi Note 11 does not cost 400, but 200 euros. Its value for money has no equivalent in the market.
If you are looking for an entry-level smartphone or someone close to you asks you for advice, the Redmi Note 11 is the one. Once again, Xiaomi shows us that it has no equivalent to date at the entry level. It is true that your smartphone does not have the best software interface or the best camera, but frankly we can do without it given the quality of the rest. And yes, it is possible to make good smartphones at low prices.