Which is the better Snapdragon 636-sporting phone?
Qualcomm launched the Snapdragon 636 processor late last year, and it is only during the early months of 2018 that we get a preview of phones using the new mid-range chip. So far, we have the Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro and ASUS ZenFone 5 using the said processor. That being said, we decided to do a quick comparo of the two. Here are their spec sheets:
Asus Zenfone 5 Specifications
- AI-powered Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 processor
- 4GB RAM +64GB storage or 6GB RAM/64GB storage
- 6.2-inch Full HD+IPS display; 19:9 aspect ratio, 2246×1080 resolution, DCI-P3 wide color gamut
- 12-megapixel main rear camera, Sony IMX363 sensor, f/1.8 aperture, Night HDR, OIS. EIS, PDAF, RGB sensor
- 8-megapixel secondary rear camera, 120-degree wide angle view
- 4G, LTE
- Dual SIM
- WiFi, Bluetooth
- GPS, A-GPS
- Fingerprint scanner
- Facial Recognition
- USB Type-C port
- 3300mAh battery with BoostMaster and Smart Charging
- Android Oreo with ZenUI 5.0
Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro specs
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 octa-core processor
- 4GB/6GB RAM
- 5.99-inch Full HD+ IPS display
- 64GB expandable storage, via microSD (up to 128GB)
- 12-megapixel f/2.2 Sony IMX486 and 5-megapixel f/2.0 Samsung rear cameras with LED Flash
- 20-megapixel front camera with LED Flash, Sony IMX376 sensor
- 4G LTE
- WiFi, Bluetooth
- GPS/A-GPS/GLONASS, Fingerprint scanner
- Android Nougat with MIUI 9
- 4000mAh battery
Internals: Roughly the same
Aside from the processor, both the ZenFone 5 and Redmi Note 5 Pro offer the same internals and even the same RAM+internal storage configuration. In theory, they should deliver the same performance but factors like software optimization can greatly affect their overall performance.
Display: Bigger display on the ZenFone 5, BUT…
While you get a larger screen estate on the ZenFone 5 by .3 inches, people will surely have mixed thoughts on ASUS’ use of the notch. It may be an eyesore for some, while it may be beneficial for others. In this department, some people might prefer the Redmi Note 5 Pro’s more conservative display.
Camera: It really depends on your needs
Both phones have interesting camera setups, and it really depends on which will you use more. If you are a selfie addict, the Redmi Note 5 Pro’s 20-megapixel front camera takes the cake. If you really care about wide-angle photos, then go for the ZenFone 5’s dual rear camera setup, which is essentially the same camera setup found on the ZenFone 4.
In addition, both phones have AI photo capabilities, but we will need to test them further to determine which has the better AI interface.
Battery: The Redmi Note 5 Pro rules, but don’t discount the ZenFone 5 just yet
On paper, the Redmi Note 5 Pro rules with its bigger 4000mAh battery. However, we will not discount the fact that the ZenFone 5 has a plethora of AI-related battery saving features that we have not yet tested. Regardless of that, the fact that both use a Snapdragon 636 processor should make them power efficient.
Verdict: Pricing is the BIGGEST question
While both phones offer competitive specs, the most important question is still how they will be priced. In the case of the Redmi Note 5 Pro, it should sell at around $220 if they will follow the pricing in India.
As for ASUS, they have teased the price of the base ZenFone 5Z-which is a ZenFone 5 with a Snapdragon 845 processor, at around $591. Our safe guess is that the ZenFone 5 will be priced much lower-at around $385, but we will have to wait for the official pricing once it becomes available in April 2018.