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Xiaomi Redmi Y1 initial impressions: Selfie phone with good specifications

Xiaomi has now added a new selfie-centric phone, the Xiaomi Redmi Y1 to their Indian lineup. This new phone sports a 16MP front-facing camera with a selfie flash. Among other specifications, the device comes with a 5.5 inch HD display, fingerprint sensor, up to 4GB RAM and 64GB onboard storage.

The Xiaomi Redmi Y1 is a budget smartphone with a selfie-centric approach. We can safely say that this phone is Xiaomi’s answer to Oppo and Vivo phones in the same range. We got our hands on the device and here are our initial impressions of the Xiaomi Redmi Y1. Apart from the Redmi Y1, the company also launched the Y1 Lite.

Xiaomi Redmi Y1 Specifications

Key Specifications Xiaomi Redmi Y1
Display 5.5 inch IPS LCD display
Screen Resolution 1280 x 720 pixels
Operating System Android 7.1. Nougat
Processor Quad core
Chipset Snapdragon 435
GPU Adreno 505
Internal Storage 32GB / 64GB
Expandable Storage Up to 128GB via microSD card
Primary Camera 13 MP with f/2.2, LED flash, PDAF
Secondary Camera 16MP, f/2.0 aperture selfie toning flash
Video Recording 1080p @ 60fps
Battery 3,080mAh
4G VoLTE Yes
Sim Card Type Dual SIM
Dimensions 153 x 76.2 x 7.7mm
Weight 153g
Price 3GB / 32GB – Rs. 8,999
4GB / 64GB – Rs. 10,999

Physical Overview

Xiaomi Redmi Y1 displayIt seems like Xiaomi has compromised on the build quality with the Redmi Y1. The phone is made of plastic which feels good but does not give a premium feel like metal build. On the front, you will get three capacitive navigation keys below the display. The front camera with flash and other sensors is above the display.

Xiaomi Redmi Y1 backComing to the back, you will find the single camera at the top-left corner along with a flash. The fingerprint sensor is quick and easily accessible around the center of the back panel. Xiaomi has given antenna bands that run horizontally on the top and bottom of the phone.

Coming to the sides, the Xiaomi Redmi Y1 sports the volume rockers and power button on the right side. A SIM tray that can use 2 nano-SIM cards and a microSD card is given at the left side of the phone.

You get the Micro USB port and speaker grille at the bottom and a 3.5mm earphone jack and IR blaster on the top. Thanks to the IR blaster, you can use your Redmi Y1 as a remote for multiple appliances.


Xiaomi Redmi Y1 capacitive keys

On the Xiaomi Redmi Y1, you get a 5.5 inch display with HD IPS LCD display with a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels and Corning Gorilla Glass protection. Being a budget phone, it does not come with an Always-On display or lift-up display.

The display on the Redmi Y1 is actually better than what it sounds on paper. It is readable in direct sunlight and can be dimmed well in low light conditions. It is responsive to different touch inputs and the slight stickiness from the Mi A1 is not there. Also, the viewing angles on this display are good because of the IPS panel.


Xiaomi Redmi Y1 rear camera

Being a selfie-centric smartphone, the Xiaomi Redmi Y1 focuses more on the selfie camera. The phone comes with a 16MP front-facing camera and a 13MP rear camera, both with flash.


The Xiaomi Redmi Y1 comes with a Snapdragon 435 octa core processor. This processor is coupled with 3GB RAM and 32GB storage or 4GB and 64GB storage. There is also a dedicated microSD card slot that allows expansion up to 128GB.

With this hardware, the Redmi Y1 looks promising when it comes to specifications. Unlike other phones in the same range, Xiaomi has not compromised on specifications for a camera, which is good.

Software and Performance

Like all Xiaomi devices, the Redmi Y1 also comes with the latest MIUI 9 with Android 7.1.1 Nougat. This means that the phone will optimally perform on a software level. Having said that, the Xiaomi Redmi Y1 actually performs well and shows no noticeable lag while using the device for moderate tasks.

However, after a constant camera usage and 15 minutes of heavy gaming, the phone started heating up. We expected it because this is a budget smartphone and is not the best device for heavy usage. However, we were not disappointed by the overall performance of the Redmi Y1.

Battery and Connectivity

In terms of battery, the Xiaomi Redmi Y1 is powered by a 3,080mAh non-removable battery. This phone is a dual SIM 4G VoLTE smartphone with Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS, Micro USB, 3.5mm earphone jack, and an Infrared blaster as the connectivity options.

Abhishek Bhatnagar

Abhishek Bhatnagar

Abhishek Bhatnagar, a known technology blogger & YouTuber from India. A Software Engineer by qualification, now he works as the editor-In-Chief, Webmaster, & Managing Director at Gadgets To Use. He runs a number of other technology websites as well.View Author posts