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Xiaomi releases the Redmi Note 8 2021 with questionable changes

The Redmi Note 8 2021 relies on a MediaTek Helio G85 rather than the Snapdragon 665 in the 2019 model. (Image source: Xiaomi)
The Redmi Note 8 2021 relies on a MediaTek Helio G85 rather than the Snapdragon 665 in the 2019 model. (Image source: Xiaomi)
Xiaomi has unveiled the Redmi Note 8 2021, but it has barely made any changes compared to the device it has been selling for nearly two years. The new model arrives with Android 11 and MIUI 12.5 though, so it should receive another two years of OS updates, unlike the Redmi Note 8.

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The Redmi Note 8 has been revived for 2021, having been initially released in 2019. However, the Redmi Note 8 2021 is, arguably, less powerful than its predecessor. Naturally, Xiaomi does not disclose this, but our database suggests that the newer model could be about 3% slower than the 2019 edition.

Originally, the Redmi Note 8 came with a Snapdragon 665, an octa-core SoC based on an 11 nm process. Xiaomi has switched the Snapdragon 665 for a MediaTek Helio G85, also an octa-core SoC, albeit one based on a 12 nm process. The Helio G85 outperforms the Snapdragon 665 in some benchmarks and tasks, such as PCMark for Android, but the latter comes out on top overall. You can read more about our Helio G85 and Snapdragon 665 comparisons here.

The SoC change has also improved the Redmi Note 8's Bluetooth connectivity from the older 4.2 standard to the newer 5.2. The display, cameras, battery and storage remain identical, though. Oddly, the newer model tops out at 4 GB of RAM, 2 GB less than the 2019 model offered.

Ultimately, prolonged software support may be the reason to choose the Redmi Note 8 2021 over its predecessor. The Redmi Note 8 remains on Android 10 and MIUI 12, whereas the Redmi Note 8 2021 has launched on Android 11 with MIUI 12.5. The newer device should receive at least Android 13, too.

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(Image source: Xiaomi)

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Alex Alderson
Alex Alderson - Senior Tech Writer - 4103 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2018
Prior to writing and translating for Notebookcheck, I worked for various companies including Apple and Neowin. I have a BA in International History and Politics from the University of Leeds, which I have since converted to a Law Degree. Happy to chat on Twitter or Notebookchat.
contact me via: @aldersonaj
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 05 > Xiaomi releases the Redmi Note 8 2021 with questionable changes
Alex Alderson, 2021-05-25 (Update: 2021-05-25)