The Redmi Note 11 Series global launch event revealed the key specifications for the Note 11 Series, but the Pro models look pretty lacklustre.
Last year, Xiaomi launched the Redmi Note 10 Series which pretty much redefined the kind of specifications you could get in the crucial 10,000-20,000 Rupees ($130-$300) price segment. Only complaints with these phones were minor MIUI bugs and slight stutters. Even after multiple price hikes and some poor updates, the phones still remain the best value in that particular price segment.
The Note 10 Pro is so well specced out, with 120Hz OLED, stereo speakers, glass back, well optimised 732G at 17,999, it makes you wonder where the profits are coming from especially after all MIUI ads were cleaned up with 12.5. With the Note series though, there is this pattern. The years where Redmi does well, Realme does not, and when Realme does well, Redmi does not.
Something similar is happening this year too, with the Redmi Note 11 Pro 4G being a step down from the Note 10 Pro in many ways. The Helio G96 used is a downgrade from the 732G on the Note 10 Pro. Instead of the iconic 5MP TeleMacro camera which was actually useful and was way better than the competition even at higher price points, we get a pretty much useless 2MP Macro camera.
Redmi Note 11 Series: Good Enough?
The Note 11 Pro 4G is well rounded in other aspects, like a 120Hz OLED screen, stereo speakers, 5000MAH Battery with pretty fast 67W Charging (the only upgrade from the Note 10 Pro). All in all, it makes no sense to launch the 4G Variant of the Note 11 Pro in India because even at 17,999 it will get crushed by the competition.
There is a 5G Variant of the Note 11 Pro, which is sort of an upgrade in terms of both CPU and GPU capabilities but since the ISP is worse (one of the main reasons it is a 6 series chip), so it cannot do 4K video recording on both the front and the back which is just a shame, because the Redmi Note 8 Pro from 2019 could do that. Also, there is no 60FPS video recording either.
The Note 11 Pro 5G has almost identical specs to the 4G Variant in other aspects, same battery size and charging speeds and the same camera setup, but no 2MP Depth sensor on this one (nobody misses that).
Two other smartphones were launched at the event which are actually considerably better than previous gen, the Redmi Note 11 has a 90Hz OLED screen now, with the Snapdragon 680 Chip, 33W Charging and a 5000MAH Battery, 50MP+8MP+2MP+2MP “Quad” Cameras, and it starts at 200$, so we can expect it to be priced 14,999 in India and then there might be some introductory offers to bring it down to 13,999 or maybe lower.
Then the Note 11S has the same Helio G96 as the Note 11 Pro 4G, has the same 6.43in 90Hz OLED as the Note 11. It has 33W Charging instead of the 67 seen on the Pro, and an upgraded main camera when compared to the Note 11. It is a very similar phone to the Note 11 Pro 4G except for screen refresh rate and charging speeds.
But this is priced 18,999 Rupees when converted from global price which is just bonkers because it will just get slaughtered by the competition if it is priced like that here in India. The Note 11 Pro 4G is priced 22,000 and the 5G one is priced 24,000 for the base variant. So, assuming the 4G variant does not make it to India, we can assume the Note 11 Pro 5G might go down to 19,999 here.
The problem here is there are too many overlapping models with specifications that are too similar to one another, the only differences between the Note 11 and 11S are the chipsets used, the main camera, and the front camera.
The only differences between the Note 11S and Note 11 Pro 4G are slightly larger screen size, 120Hz instead of 90, and faster charging. Then the difference between the 4G and 5G phones is literally just the chipset (and the 5G model drops the depth sensor which nobody misses).
Also, these phones are quite different when compared to the Chinese Redmi Note 11 series, the Redmi Note 11 in China has a 90Hz LCD screen with the Dimensity 810 and also has 5G support (was launched in India as the Redmi Note 11T 5G).
The Redmi Note 11 Pro in China had the Dimensity 920 Chip and 120Hz OLED with 67W Charging (the same phone was launched as the Xiaomi 11i in India.) The Note 11 Pro Plus in China has 120W Fast Wired Charging and a smaller battery compared to the Pro, and the other specs are identical (this was launched as the Xiaomi 11i Hypercharge in India).
So basically the Chinese Note series is different from the global Note series and the Chinese Note series gets rebranded and is launched under different names. So back to the original question, is the Global Redmi Note 11 series a downgrade from the Note 10 series?
The Note 11 and Note 11S are not really downgrades, but the 4G Note 11 Pro is an actually significant downgrade on paper. The 5G model seems to be fine except for the omission of TeleMacro and also the inability to shoot video in 4K or 60 FPS, which is really disappointing, but this is not exactly Xiaomi’s fault, it is Qualcomm’s, so we cannot complain much.
Now using a 750G or a 765G might have been a better choice because the ISP on those chips is much better, and we do not know how the worse ISP on the 695 affects general photography, let’s just hope the photos do not come out as bad as they did on the 11i, and hopefully remain as good as they were on the Note 10 Pro Max.
It is unclear if all 4 models will be arriving in India and we do not know the pricing of course but overall the Note 11 Series is not as ambitious or as promising as the Note 10 Series. While this does not make them bad phones, I would not recommend the 4G version to anyone unless it is priced something like 16,000 which is just unlikely.
So that’s all we have to say about the Redmi Note 11 Series. Let us know what you think in the comments down below. We will keep the site updated if there are any leaks about when these will launch in India, and what the pricing will be. Also, none of these phones ships with Android 12 out of the box (they all run Android 11 based on MIUI 13) which is just a cheap tactic to provide less software support.
Thank you for reading.