Xiaomi packs 48-megapixel camera into budget Redmi Note 7 phone

The $150 handset joins the burgeoning club of handsets offering a 48-megapixel rear camera.

Xiaomi phone shipments exceeded 100 million by October

Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has unveiled the budget Redmi Note 7, which starts at 999RMB ($150) and features a dual rear camera with 48-megapixel and 5-megapixel sensors. 

The Redmi Note 7 is the first phone launched since Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun revealed last week that it would break out Redmi as its own sub-brand, leaving Xiaomi to focus on higher-end phones. 

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The Redmi Note 7 sports a 6.3-inch screen in a 19.5:9 screen ratio, with 2,340 x 1,080 pixels at 409 pixels per inch. 

For about $150, you'll get 3GB of RAM and 32GB onboard storage, but it's also available with 4GB RAM and 64GB of storage for $180, and as a 6GB/64GB variant that costs $210. 

The screen has a small circular cutout for the front-facing 13-megapixel camera and the fingerprint reader is located on the back. The device has USB-C charging, a 4000mAh battery and supports fast charging. 

While the US is still off the cards for Xiaomi, Jun told Bloomberg in an interview today that it will be expanding into more markets in Europe in the coming year. 

Jun said demand for smartphones in China is declining but he expects it to pick up once networks support 5G. He wasn't surprised that foreign smartphone brands were struggling in China as local smartphone makers were "more competitive". 

SEE: IT pro's guide to the evolution and impact of 5G technology (free PDF)

Xiaomi has been ramping up its presence in Europe over the past year. According to analyst firm Canalys, Xiaomi's shipments to Western Europe grew 386 percent year-on-year in the third quarter of 2018. 

Xiaomi shipped 4.4 million smartphones in the wider EMEA region in the third quarter, according to analyst firm IDC. Xiaomi shipments were up 131 percent compared to last year, while Samsung and Apple saw their shipments decline 14.6 percent and 6 percent, respectively. 

Jun highlighted that Xiaomi is also an internet services company, offering online music and movies to around 220 million users.  


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