Redmi 9 Power review: Budget battery beast

It’s been a busy year for Xiaomi. The Redmi 9 Power is another competitor in the Indian entry-level segment of smartphones from the company’s sub-brand. The budget phone places great emphasis on battery longevity – a feature that may not be a top priority for many users if lockouts are in progress.

However, delivery of a good smartphone takes longer than the battery life. Does it avoid table inserts like a high quality camera setup or does it build quality to maximize battery life?

Let’s find out if Xiaomi’s latest version has what it takes to survive in the highly competitive, entry-level segment. This is Android AuthorityRedmi 9 Power review.

About this Redmi 9 Power Test: I wrote this Redmi 9 power test after spending a week with the phone as the primary device. Xiaomi India delivered the device that ran Android 10 with MIUI 12 on board.


Is the Redmi 9 Power well designed?

Redmi 9 Power profile recording

Recognition: Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

With each subsequent iteration, Xiaomi has pushed the design language of the Redmi series in new directions. The same applies to the Redmi 9 Power, which is rather wrong in the direction of the Realme School of Design. Regardless, the phone looks stunning with its woven pattern and matte back that improves grip even further.

The quad camera module is on top and you will see a gigantic Redmi logo emblazoned below. I’m really not a fan of brands that use smartphones as personal advertising space, but hey … design is subjective.

The button layout is a standard matter. The on / off switch and the volume rocker are on the right and offer sufficient tactile feedback.

In addition, the fingerprint reader is embedded in the power button and can be unlocked very quickly. Elsewhere you’ll find a USB-C port at the bottom, a 3.5mm audio jack at the top, and an IR blaster – a well-rounded package.

Redmi 9 Power Display on and in front

Recognition: Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

On the front, next to Gorilla Glass 3, there is a 6.53-inch Full HD + display. Redmi phones at this price point tend to have high quality displays, and the Redmi 9 Power’s is no exception. It’s nice and bright with well-saturated colors.

Connected: These are the best Xiaomi phones that you can buy

Another aspect of the phone that I noticed was the weight. At 198g, the Redmi 9 Power isn’t the lightest you can get in this segment, but the large battery capacity puts things into perspective. The phone is comfortable to hold for long periods of time.

A nice feature is the inclusion of stereo speakers, although it’s not worth writing home about peak volume and sound quality.


How is the use of the Redmi 9 Power?

Redmi 9 power-in-hand display

Recognition: Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

The Redmi 9 Power is powered by the Snapdragon 662 chipset and is only the second of its kind after the Moto G9. The Snapdragon 662 is essentially a redesigned Snapdragon 660 chipset with a faster Adreno 610 GPU. The octa-core chipset’s performance is fine for everyday use, but the phone is certainly not a powerhouse. Elsewhere, 4 GB of RAM and 64 or 128 GB of storage are integrated. It can be expanded further with a microSD card.

While the user interface is pretty well optimized, launching apps, and games in particular, isn’t the fastest.

As always, Xiaomi did a good job optimizing MIUI 12 for the hardware. The daily ease of use is excellent. The software is nice and fluid with no noticeable delays. Launching apps isn’t quite the fastest in its segment, however, and this is especially noticeable when playing games.

When you’re talking about games, popular titles aren’t that quick to load, and you can’t turn the settings too high either. However, I was able to get some titles like Call of Duty Mobile, Stardew Valley, and Pokémon Go running fine on the phone.

Redmi 9 Power pre-installed apps

Recognition: Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

MIUI 12 suffers from the relentless insistence on bloatware and pre-installed apps. It’s a recurring theme, but while I’m reluctant to accept Xiaomi’s own suite of apps, the included installs of WPS Office, Facebook, LinkedIn, Moj, Dream 11, and more are irritating to say the least.

Then there are GetApps that will show a notification the first time you set up the device. This is not the experience you would expect from a brand new smartphone.


What is the battery life of the Redmi 9 Power?

Redmi 9 Power phone photo

Recognition: Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

The phone’s name is a dead giveaway for the real USP here, and that’s the battery life. A 6,000mAh battery is huge. Paired with the economical processor, the Redmi 9 Power stays switched on forever. I could easily get two days of regular use out of the phone. With more economical use, you could postpone this to three days.

The 6,000 mAh battery lasts forever, which is great as it takes well over two hours to charge the phone.

Most users shouldn’t feel like they need to charge the device every day. This is great as it takes a long time to charge the phone. While the Redmi 9 Power is included with a 22 W charger, the charging speeds are limited to 18 W. This means that you will have to wait more than two hours for the phone to charge from scratch.


Are the cameras good?

Redmi 9 Power in hand

Recognition: Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

Multi-camera setups on affordable smartphones are now taken for granted. The Redmi 9 Power is no exception. On the back there is a 48-megapixel primary contactor, which is combined with an 8-megapixel ultra-wide sensor, a 2-megapixel macro camera and a depth sensor.

See also: The best budget camera phones you can buy

The image quality varies from pretty good to average between sensors. You should be able to get some decent results in broad daylight, however. The primary sensor captures a lot of detail, but has a tendency to blow out highlights.

The HDR performance of the Redmi 9 Power is a bit dubious. There isn’t too much detail in the shadow area and the phone struggles to soften the highlights.

Indoors, the image quality deteriorates with missing details and a cooler white balance than with the actual setting. It’s not bad for the price, but I’ve seen better. In addition, the ultra-wide camera has noticeable distortion around the edges.

Redmi 9 Power camera sample macro

Recognition: Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

Finally, there is the macro camera that allows you to get close to a subject. With enough lighting, the camera can capture some interesting results, but the resolution is just too low to be very useful.

Redmi Note 9 Power Selfie Portrait Redmi Note 9 Power Selfie Redmi Note 9 Power Selfie Portrait

Redmi Note 9 Power Selfie

The 13MP front camera takes great looking selfies, but skin enhancement is turned on by default. There’s a fair amount of detail, but like the rear gunner, the phone isn’t particularly good at handling highlights.

I was quite impressed with the portrait mode offered. For the price, the phone does a pretty good job of detecting portrait mode, although it stumbled a little with stray hair.

On the other hand, the video quality here is pretty poor. The resolution is 1080p at 30fps and the video quality is not particularly good. There are strong noises in anything but excellent lighting conditions. Even in good lighting, the phone often struggles to lock the focus. If imaging is a concern, I would recommend switching to the Redmi Note 9 Pro.


What I like about the Redmi 9 Power

  • The processing quality. The Redmi range of phones has always had great build quality, and this is also the case with the Redmi 9 Power.
  • The battery life. With a 6,000 mAh battery and an economical processor, the Redmi 9 Power is equipped with a single charge for days.
  • The stereo speakers. They might not be flagship speakers, but stereo speakers on a budget phone are still great and add immersive.

What I do not like

  • Imaging in low light conditions. The 48-megapixel camera works well in bright light, but like budget phones, the imaging is still poor in low light.
  • The bloatware. The sheer amount of bloatware and notification spam on the Redmi 9 Power can be very offensive.
  • The macro camera. The 2MP macro camera has too low a resolution and acts as a token inclusion for marketing.

Technical specifications

Redmi 9 Power
display6.53 inch IPS LCD
Resolution of 2,340 x 1,080
60Hz refresh rate
Gorilla glass 3
processorQualcomm Snapdragon 662
4 x 2.0 GHz Kryo 260 gold, 4 x 1.8 GHz Kryo 260 silver
Adreno 610
R.A.M.4GB
warehouse64 GB / 128 GB
microSD card slot
cameraMain:

48 MP f / 1.8
8MP f / 2.2 120 degrees ultra wide
2MP macro sensor
2MP depth sensor

8MP front camera

battery6,000 mAh
18W fast charge
USB-C USB-PD 2.0
18W fast charge
Headphone jackYes
softwareMIUI 12
Android 10
Dimensions and weight162.3 x 77.3 x 9.6 mm
198 g
priceRs. 10,999
ColoursPowerful Black, Fiery Red, Electric Green, Blazing Blue

Redmi 9 Power Review: The Verdict

The strongest competition for the Redmi 9 Power surprisingly comes from Xiaomi’s own warehouse. The Redmi Note 9 offers a bit more power with a slightly smaller yet powerful battery for the same price.

Then there is the Redmi Note 9 Pro. The price is a bit higher, but with the Snapdragon 720G chipset it offers significantly better performance. It also offers better camera optimization.

Connected: Best Android Smartphones In India You Can Get

All said and done, the Redmi 9 Power will appeal to a very specific buyer – one who wants great battery life from their phone. The overall package is competitive. Still, a few corners are cut. Most obvious is the imaging, which could have benefited from better tuning.

However, if you are looking for a good phone with a very good battery life, then you should consider the Redmi 9 Power.

Xiaomi Redmi 9 Power

The Redmi 9 Power is another safe bet from Xiaomi. It has an eye-catching design, tremendous battery life, and a reasonable price at an affordable price. Aside from Iffy cameras, there isn’t much to like here.

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