The Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 is a Worthy Alternative to the Honor 9 Lite

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The New Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro is making rounds on the internet because Xiaomi has introduced a very high-end phone with a very performance intensive processor at a very affordable price. Of course, it is very well known that Honor and Xiaomi tend to compete in the same segment very often. While the Note 5 Pro goes against the Honor 7X, the standard Redmi Note 5 competes with Honor 9 Lite smartphone. Although people await the ‘Pro’ phone from Xiaomi, the Redmi Note 5 is not a bad option for someone looking to spend less.


While the Redmi Note 5 sells at Rs 9,999 & Rs 11,999 the Honor 9 Lite sells at Rs 10,999 & Rs 14,999, thus giving a tough time to the Redmi Note 5. The Honor 9 Lite comes with hardware which performs equally well and with a camera setup which might be one step ahead of what we get to see on the Redmi Note 5. Both phones sport an 18:9 display and take equal spots for performance.

Given that Xiaomi puts in extra thought to design its devices, they haven’t let us walk away disappointed this time too. The build of the phone is metal, and the device feels premium when held in hand. The display has very narrow bezels which lift the attractiveness of the phone. Although there is no notch like the more premium devices of 2018, this phone doesn’t fail to impress us all in this particular price range with its classy 18:9 display.


The Honor 9 Lite has a similar 18:9 screen albeit a bit smaller. The reflective casing of the phone fashioning a glass body makes it attention seeking. The drawback comes when we take a look at the back side of the device which because of the glass body tends to attract a lot of scratches. Also, the glass although might give Honor 9 Lite good aesthetics but it also makes it a fragile phone.

The Redmi Note 5 has a decent quality screen protected with Corning Gorilla Glass. The screen size is 5.99 which is an IPS LCD display. The Honor 9 Lite comes with a smaller 5.65-inch Full HD+ display. Even though both the phones come with 18:9 displays, there are noticeable bezels on top and bottom of both the phones. But with a smaller sized display, the 9 Lite will be compact when taken into hands.

In the case of Redmi Note 5, it’s apparent that this phone comes with the same hardware as its last relative, the Redmi Note 4. The phone is driven by Snapdragon 625 SoC and as we said, the phone ships with 3GB/4GB RAM and 32GB/64GB internal storage. But the disappointing news for some might be that the Redmi Note 5 comes with MIUI 9 which runs on Android Nougat 7.1. During this time where companies are launching mid-range phones with Android Oreo 8.0 out of the box in the same price range as this phone, might cause Redmi to be in a questionable position. Also, we must not forget to tell you that even though the Android 7.1 is not the latest software for this phone, the MIUI 9 experience is a really impressive UI to run the device.


The Honor 9 Lite ships with Kirin 659 SoC built on top of the 16nm manufacturing process. While it may not be as power efficient as the Redmi Note 5, it does offer slightly better performance, which again isn't noticeable in day-to-day usage. However, the drawback comes when we talk about the EMUI 8 which is not a good performer in terms of user interface and experience. However, the fact that this UI runs on top of Android 8.0 Oreo will appeal many software lovers out there.

The Redmi Note 5 gets left behind yet again and this time by a far distance because of the quad camera setup that the Honor 9 Lite sports. The Redmi Note 5 only has a single 12MP camera on the rear, and 5MP setup on the front whereas the Honor 9 Lite has a 13MP + 2MP (dual cameras) on both the front and back. The hyped portrait mode can be seen on the Honor 9 Lite.

This is where the Redmi Note 5 truly shines. It is non-debatable that the 4,000mAh battery on the Note 5 takes the trophy when it comes to longer battery life and the efficient use of it. The MIUI is an extremely good performer when it comes to consuming battery. It doesn’t put too much pressure on the life of the phone thus giving longer hours on this device.


This, however, is not the case with Honor 9 Lite. The EMUI skin along with a smaller 3000mAh battery will not inspire confidence.

Specifications wise, we can come to the conclusion that the Honor 9 Lite is a clear winner when it comes to this tough competition against the Redmi Note 5. The quad-camera setup, the latest operating system will appeal Honor lovers out there, but the Redmi Note 5, however, doesn’t remain left out in all the fronts like battery and build quality.

Those are some areas which have been Xiaomi’s forte from a long time. And the fact that MIUI 9 skin is far ahead of Honor's EMUI skin is enough for more consumers to get it ahead of the Honor 9 Lite.

And here comes the pricing aspect. The 4GB RAM and 64GB storage variant of the Note 5 is available at just Rs 11,999, while the same variant of the Honor 9 Lite is priced at Rs 14,999. That's some ridiculous pricing from Honor, considering the fact that they're offering just 32GB of additional storage. That said, the Rs 14,999 doesn't justify the asking price for Honor 9 Lite because we have the Redmi Note 5 Pro available at Rs 13,999.

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