Over the past few years, Xiaomi sub-brand Redmi has grown its portfolio with fancy midrange and entry-level devices. But still, it’s not forgetting its roots, as it recently announced a refresh to its most popular line with the new Redmi 12.

Like other budget devices before it, this year’s iteration still wants to be people’s top choice for a bang-for-the-buck entry-level smartphone under Php10,000. Does it succeed in doing that? Or is it time to move on to a different device from another brand? We’ll find out in our Redmi 12 full review.

Redmi 12 Specs

  • Android 12, MIUI 13
  • Dual SIM, Dual standby
  • 6.79-inch FHD+ IPS display, 2400 x 1080 pixel resolution, 387ppi
  • 90Hz refresh rate
  • 2.0GHz MediaTek Helio G88 octa-core processor
  • Mali-G52 MC2 GPU
  • 8GB RAM
  • 128GB/256GB internal storage, expandable via microSD
  • 8-megapixel front camera
  • 50-megapixel + 8-megapixel + 2-megapixel rear cameras, LED
  • HSPA+, 4G LTE
  • WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band
  • Bluetooth 5.3
  • NFC
  • GPS, A-GPS
  • USB Type-C
  • Dimensions: 168.6 x 76.3 x 8.2mm
  • Weight: 198.5g
  • Colors: Black, White, Blue
  • 5,000mAh battery, 18W charging

Design and Build Quality

The Redmi 12’s design is far different from its predecessor. It looks much cleaner and feels really nice in the hands. The camera layout on the back looks more elegant with no clunky camera island — just the three cameras with their own lenses and a shiny ring around them that accentuates the overall look.


This rear panel has a glass-like appearance thanks to plastic. Using plastic also means it’s cheaper and lighter. What surprised us is that despite the glossy surface, the fingerprint marks and smudges are not noticeable unless you really look for them.

It stays clean all the time, which looks nicer in this Blue colorway, perfect if you don’t like using the free frosted clear case.


In terms of comfort, it’s heavier than most phones as it weighs 198.5g (other devices average around 180g), but it’s barely noticeable. It’s also not the thinnest phone around, but it’s understandable given the large battery capacity.

However, the flat sides and the smooth back panel made it comfortable to hold. The flat chassis makes it easy to grab with one hand or be held for hours in landscape if you’re binge-watching or playing games.


Taking a tour, we have the large 6.79-inch FHD+ IPS display on the front. We appreciate the punch-hole cutout instead of the usual waterdrop notch as it looks more premium. The thickness of the bezels is to be expected, no big deal here.

Oh, and Xiaomi has pre-applied a screen protector for extra peace of mind. It is also IP53-rated, which means it should be fine after accidental water splashes.


We have the 3.5mm headphone jack on the top, joined by the IR blaster. The USB-C port is at the bottom, together with the microphone and loudspeaker.


On the top left, we have the hybrid SIM tray. It can only house two nano SIM cards or sacrifice the other for a microSD card for storage expansion.


The left side has the volume controls above the lock/power switch, which doubles asthe fingerprint scanner. The buttons are tactile and clicky, but I wish they were not too flat and are protruded slightly higher, so they are more comfortable to press.


On the back, we have the aforementioned triple-camera setup. The one on top is the 50-megapixel main shooter, the 8-megapixel ultra-wide below it, and the depth sensor on the right. It also has an LED flash and the unnecessary AI logo.

Overall, we really liked the clean and comfortable design of the Redmi 12.

Display and Sound Quality

The Redmi 12 comes with a 6.79-inch FHD+ IPS display — bigger than its predecessor’s 6.5-inch screen — with a 2460 x 1080 pixel resolution and 90Hz refresh rate. Unfortunately, it doesn’t have an ambient light sensor for automatic brightness adjustment, which should already be present in all smartphones at this point. No proximity sensor either.


Display quality is fine, especially for the price. We appreciate how the large size makes movies immersive and provides more space for on-screen controls on games.

Plus, it gets bright enough for outdoor usage, but we do hope it’s slightly brighter. It also has Widevine L1, so you can stream content in HD on platforms like Netflix.


Color quality is fine with the color preset set to Vivid by default. If you want spicier colors, there’s a Saturated option available. You can also adjust the color temperatures to Default, Warm, Cool, or Custom if you’re really picky.

The 90Hz refresh rate did its best to make things smoother, but it’s barely noticeable, especially with its entry-level chip (more on that later).


One big bummer here is the lack of stereo speakers, which its predecessor had. Instead, we’re left with a single bottom-firing driver that only provides adequate performance. It’s audible for sure, but we wish it was louder and clearer.

Hardware and Performance

The Redmi 12 is powered by a MediaTek Helio G88 octa-core processor clocked at 2.0GHz with Mali-G52 MC2 GPU. The unit that we have comes with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of expandable storage.

Redmi 12 Benchmark Scores


Redmi is known for using chipsets above the device’s class, so they clearly dropped the ball on this one. The Helio G88 is an aging processor, and it shows in its performance. Some apps take time to launch, random lags here and there, delays when taking pictures, and other things you’d come to expect from an underpowered chip.

But we do appreciate the generous 8GB RAM, as we were able to go back from a previously opened app and land from where we left off.


Gaming, as expected, is lackluster. Farlight84 still feels laggy even in the lowest graphics settings, same with Genshin Impact where it also tends to overheat. On the upside, Call of Duty Mobile does feel relatively smooth under Medium graphics and High frame rate setting. PUBG Mobile also ran well under HD graphics and High frame rate. MOBA’s like Mobile Legends and League of Legends: Wild Rift are playable without any issues.

Software and User Interface

The Redmi 12 runs on Android 13-based MIUI 14. Xiaomi pledged to give the device two major updates, which means that it will be eligible for Android 14 and Android 15 once they are out. In addition, the device will get security patches until June 2027.


MIUI is still one of the cleanest and most optimized interfaces on the market. It feels fast and snappy, other than the usual lags that we’ve experienced, which we’ll blame the underwhelming processor.

Even the settings menu itself is clean, as well as the control center and how the notifications pop up.


Customization features are plenty. There’s even a dedicated theme store in the settings. However, we’re not used to getting video ads on a device’s own system. We opened the Wallpaper selection and a video ad pop-up, which you can’t skip until after the 5-second countdown.

It’s probably one of the few ways Xiaomi actually makes money from their bang-for-the-buck products.


The Redmi 12 has a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, which worked with no problems during our tests. The face unlock was also fine, but it does struggle in poor lighting scenarios, especially in the dark.

MIUI also has tons of privacy protection features, as well as those under the Safety and Emergency section where you can set emergency contacts, SOS, crisis alerts, list your medical information, and more.


Handy features like Dual Apps a.k.a App Cloner are also here if you manage multiple accounts from the same social media or messaging platform. Plus, App Lock limits access to certain applications.


The IR blaster is paired with the built-in Mi Remote app, which is compatible with a lot of appliances from different brands. Quite handy if you can’t find the pesky remote.

Xiaomi installed a lot of apps that cannot be removed but are quite essential, so that’s fine. Android’s Nearby Share is also here and it works seamlessly, which is really handy for sharing files with other Android users.


We also love the smoothness of the gesture controls, but the traditional three-button navigation keys are still available in the settings.

The app drawer was not enabled by default. That’s the first thing we changed upon getting the device, as it’s faster to look for the app you want to use thanks to the intelligent sorting and search tab.


Xiaomi uses Google Keyboard by default on MIUI, which is easy to get used to and gives easy access to GIFs and stickers. The camera app is simple and intuitive, with a drop-down button on top for finer controls.

The Redmi 12 proves that MIUI is still one of the most efficient interfaces on the market for budget devices.


The Redmi 12 only has a triple camera setup instead of four like its predecessor. Not a big deal, though, because the omitted one was only a depth sensor.


This device still has a sharp 50-megapixel main camera, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide, and a 2-megapixel macro lens that’s more usable than a depth sensor. An 8-megapixel lens is on the front for selfies.

Image quality is fine for the price, but is definitely not worth writing home about. Daylight shots have decent details, deep contrast, vibrant colors, and a wide dynamic range.


Unfortunately, the main camera does struggle in low light. Noise and grains are really noticeable and the dynamic range is bad. You can enable the Night mode, but don’t expect too much from it as it barely made any difference.


There’s no dedicated depth sensor, but the Portrait Mode does provide a believable shallow depth of field. Just make sure you take your time setting up the shot to make sure it detects the foreground correctly.


The 8-megapixel ultra-wide camera captures surprisingly good images. They are definitely not the sharpest, but the contrast is clean and the colors are ample.

Ultra-wide shots at night are also passable, but some images come with poor dynamic range and details.


The 2-megapixel macro lens, as expected, has poor details with muddy colors. It also lacks autofocus. It’s there when you really need it, but don’t expect much from it.


Much like the primary camera, the 8-megapixel selfie sensor only takes decent photos. They offer decent sharpness and colors in good lighting, but it struggles in low light.


It may not have the best image quality and processing, but we do appreciate that the Redmi 12, an entry-level smartphone, managed to get usable cameras such as an ultra-wide and macro lens, instead of just a depth sensor.

Battery and Charging

The Redmi 12 has the standard 5,000mAh battery with a slow 18W wired charging.

With a weak processor and low-resolution display, the Redmi 12 offers good battery life on most tasks. We were able to end our day with still about 30% juice after a day of social media, taking a few pictures, and listening to music on our commute.


However, on PCMark’s battery test, it was only able to last for 11 hours and 30 minutes. That’s definitely not the best we got, as we usually average around 14 hours. What does it mean? Basically, if you spend much of your screen time doing basic things like listening to music or binge-watching, you’d get longer hours. However, hardcore gamers or those who browse the web a lot might experience shorter uptime.


The Redmi 12 only supports 18W of charging but does ship with a 22.5W adapter for some reason. That said, charging times are actually decent for the price, but painfully slow if you’re used to 30W chargers or higher.

In our tests, a 15-minute charge from 15% took us to 30%. Another 30 minutes and it’s around 48%. After staying at 99% longer than usual, it was fully charged after 2 hours.


Oh, and we also like how MIUI will notify you if your device is charging slower than usual. It will ask you to check if the charger is plugged properly. But if you’re using a different, slower charger on purpose, simply disregard it.


So, can the Redmi 12 carry the same legacy as its predecessors? In our opinion, it falls short on the expectations set by budget devices before it.

Most users shopping at its price point really care a lot about hardware and performance. And with its aging processor, buyers are better off looking somewhere else. But consumers don’t need to look further, as Xiaomi has other offerings that have a more powerful chipset in a similar price range.


In addition, it’s weird that they removed the stereo speakers from the Redmi 10, which would’ve redeemed this device for other interested buyers. Image processing could’ve been better as well, and the lack of ambient light and proximity sensors are baffling.

Still, it could pass as a daily driver for those who love clean and comfortable designs, large displays, solid battery life, and efficient software. While we do have some qualms, the Redmi 12 is a pretty good smartphone overall, especially for its low price tag.

Redmi 12 pricing and availability in the Philippines

The Redmi 12 has a price tag of Php7,999 for the 8GB/128GB and Php8,999 for the 8GB/256GB in the Philippines. For those who will get it early, it will be available for an early bird price of Php6,999.


  • Clean design, comfortable build with IP53 rating
  • Efficient software
  • Solid battery life


  • Underwhelming chipset
  • No stereo speakers
  • Image processing could be better
  • No ambient light and proximity sensors

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