Today seems to be the day of the “s” model variant. Earlier I wrote about the new MEIZU m3s (an all metal body upgrade of the MEIZU m3) and now I am going to tell you about the Xiaomi Redmi 3s, an upgraded version of the Redmi 3 with a fingerprint reader.
First a quick recap, Xiaomi range of “Redmi 3” devices is quite comprehensive. First there is the Redmi 3, the original. Then there is the “pro” version known as the Redmi 3 Pro. After that there is the Redmi 3 Note, a 5.5 inch device with a full HD display. Plus there is a variant of the Redmi 3 Note with a Snapdragon 650 processor. And now there is the Redmi 3s, no “note”, “pro” or “note pro” suffixes, just that little “s”.
Like the other, non “note”, Redmi 3 device, the Redmi 3s has a 5 inch IPS, 720p display. This means that the “s” is basically the same size as the original Redmi 3. However the 3s has a fingerprint reader on the back. That makes it similar to phones like the Huawei Mate 8 or the Huawei P9, in that the fingerprint reader isn’t incorporated into the home button. Personally I prefer devices with fingerprint readers on the back, but that is just my preference.
There are also some changes on the inside. The original Redmi 3 used the octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 616, however that has been replaced by the Snapdragon 430. The advantages of the 430 over the 616 are that the 430 has a newer generation GPU in the Adreno 505, plus it has a better 4G LTE modem. However the Snapdragon 430 is actually clocked at a lower frequency and will therefore probably be slower than the Snapdragon 616. Supporting the Snapdragon 430 is 2GB or 3GB of RAM, depending on which model you get.
As for the battery, the Redmi 3s will come with a 4100 mAh unit that can be charged using a 5V & 2A fast (i.e. 10W) charger. That is the same size battery as in the original Redmi 3, and it should be more than enough. During our testing we found that with moderate usage you should get over 2 days of battery life, and even power users will be able to get a full day out of it… and then some!
Other things to note are the 13MP rear facing camera with its 0.1 second fast focusing, plus support for HDR; and the 5MP f/2.2 front-facing camera, for all you selfie lovers! As will all Xiaomi devices the Redmi 3s runs MIUI, a heavily skinned version of Android.
The Redmi 3s comes in two memory configurations, the first with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage, while the second features 3GB RAM and 32GB of storage space. The 16GB model costs RMB 699 (around $109), while the 32GB model costs RMB 899 (around $140). The device goes on sale June 16.