Xiaomi Redmi 9C

What is it?

It’s a very cheap Xiaomi smartphone with 64GB of internal storage, 49GB of which is free to use. You can extend this with a micro-SD card.

It’s powered by the MediaTek Hello G35 processor with 3GB of Ram. It has a large 6.5-inch LCD screen and a hefty 5,000mAh battery.

It has three rear cameras: 13Mp wide, 2Mp macro and 2Mp depth lenses, plus a 5Mp wide-angle front camera.

You also get a port for plugging in wired headphones and both a fingerprint sensor and a face scanner for unlocking the phone.

What’s it like to use?

The processor isn’t powerful, so the phone doesn’t run anywhere near as quickly or smoothly as a premium handset.

There isn’t much information at all in the manual, but luckily you shouldn’t need to refer to it too often, as this phone is simple to set up and use. It’s easy to find your way around the menu, with a handy search function for your settings, and the screen responds quickly to your touch.

The biometric security features work well. The fingerprint sensor is in a comfortable position and unlocks the phone quickly, and the face scanner is fast and reliable, although it’s not as good if you wear glasses or use it in darkness.

The LCD screen gives away this phone’s low cost. It’s quite low resolution, has a bluish tint and isn’t at all readable from the sides. It does at least have sufficient brightness to counteract the glare of bright sunlight.

How long does the battery last?

Battery life is impressive on this phone. You get 38.5 hours before it goes flat, and you can add on another three hours if you turn the brightness down slightly.

There is a catch though – you have to charge it for the full three hours. Plugging it in for just 15 minutes leaves you with only four hours of charge time to play with.

How good are the cameras?

The rear lenses have a few issues, particularly the poor-quality zoom, tinted photos and disappointing results in low light. Pictures are better in daylight, though, with nice colours and detail, and portraits come out well.

It’s best to use the front camera in bright light, where the colours and contrast look their best. Pictures don’t have a great amount of detail, though, and can even look blurred.

Videos aren’t great either. When using the rear lenses, the colours look nice and the 10x zoom works well, though clips are fairly low resolution and you can see clear shaking and movements. The front camera has the same problems but it also ruins the colours, making clips look cold, dark and tinted.

Is there anything I should watch out for?

The speaker isn’t great for playing music out loud. The sound is thin and it doesn’t project the bass well at all.

Call quality isn’t terrible, although you’ll probably struggle to hear and be heard if you pick up the phone while you’re in a loud room.

Is there anything else I should know?

It passed our durability tests, so the screen shouldn’t scratch easily and it shouldn’t break down on you if it gets caught in the rain.

Should I buy it?

Unfortunately, due to the age of this phone and the brand’s update policies, we suspect it will stop receiving important security updates in less than a year, so we can’t recommend that you buy. Find out more in our guide to mobile phone security.