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Xiaomi Redmi K20 Pro vs OnePlus 7: Battle of the affordable flagships

Redmi K20 Pro vs OnePlus 7 with logos and branding

The OnePlus 7 is one of the best affordable flagships you can buy. Of course, Xiaomi is equally competitive in the Indian market and has a fitting reply in the Redmi K20 Pro. Given that they’re competing in the same segment, it’s no surprise that both these phones share quite a few specs and features. We take a closer look at exactly what these two have to offer in this Xiaomi Redmi K20 Pro vs OnePlus 7 comparison!


Design

Redmi K20 Pro vs OnePlus 7 pop up camera and waterdrop notch

The Xiaomi Redmi K20 Pro actually has more in common with the more expensive OnePlus 7 Pro than the regular OnePlus 7. This starts with the design. The Redmi K20 comes with an all-screen front with no notches or punch holes. The selfie shooter is in a pop-up housing at the top of the phone. On the other hand, the OnePlus 7 sticks to a more traditional design with a waterdrop notch up front.

The Redmi K20 Pro offers a few minor design flourishes that add to the visual appeal, such as the light hidden away in the pop-up camera module and the top-mounted notification light.

Redmi K20 Pro vs OnePlus 7 showing back of the phones in hand

The differences continue on the rear as well. The Redmi K20 Pro features an aggressive rear-panel design with its gradient finish and swirling colors. The OnePlus 7 sticks to a simpler, more muted look. The OnePlus 7 further sets its design part by adding an extra alert-slider that comes in very handy for switching profiles in a hurry.

There is little to complain about the construction of either device. This is top-notch hardware with build quality to match.


Display

Things are relatively even here, at least on paper. The Redmi K20 Pro comes with a 6.39-inch Super AMOLED display, while the OnePlus 7 features a similar 6.41-inch AMOLED screen. Of course, the former offers a blemish-free viewing experience, but the notch on the OnePlus 7 isn’t too intrusive either.

Redmi K20 Pro vs OnePlus 7 showing front and display

Both devices offer a similar Full HD+ resolution and the only real differentiator here is your choice of design.


Performance and hardware

Both phones are powered by the 2019 flagship processor of choice – the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855. This really brings to the fore how companies like Xiaomi and OnePlus continue to push the limits of features vs price. Both phones are around half the price of many competing high-end phones but come with a lot of the same specifications.

With similar specifications, performance is almost on par with storage options being the major differentiator.

Both the Redmi K20 Pro and the OnePlus 7 come with 6GB or 8GB of RAM and 128GB or 256GB of storage. The K20 Pro also adds a base model with 64GB of storage. While the OnePlus 7 has two variants, the Xiaomi device has four different combinations of RAM and storage. The two devices also have other features you’d associate with current generation flagships, like under-display fingerprint scanners.

Neither phone comes with a microSD card slot for expandable storage, so you’ll have to opt for the higher storage versions if that’s a concern. Xiaomi manages to find room for a headphone jack with the Redmi K20 Pro though, which isn’t available with the OnePlus 7.

With very similar specifications, performance is on par. The Redmi K20 Pro edges forward a bit in some synthetic benchmarks but there is no appreciable difference in real-world performance.

The Redmi K20 Pro and OnePlus 7 come with 4,000mAh and 3,700mAh batteries, respectively. Both phones also feature fast charging capabilities.

The OnePlus 7’s battery performance is fairly impressive, comfortably lasting through an entire day of average use. The Redmi K20 Pro also more than delivers in this regard, lasting up to a day and a half with light to moderate usage.


Software

The Redmi K20 Pro and the OnePlus 7 take a radically different approach towards software. The OnePlus 7 has a much cleaner build that veers close to stock Android with a sprinkling of useful additions onboard. The Redmi K20 Pro, on the other hand, runs a much heavier skin called MIUI.

MIUI is a highly customized skin that features a lot of additional features, but also adds a range of first party apps that might not be to everyone’s liking. Unlike previous Redmi devices, the K20 Pro does not have ads, but it does suffer from notification overload as we noted in our review.

MIUI on the K20 Pro offers a fairly enjoyable user experience, the much cleaner Oxygen OS simply comes across as faster, smoother and a bit more optimised for the hardware. There are pros and cons to both, but for our money we would bet on Oxygen OS offering the better experience.


Camera

The Redmi K20 Pro comes with a triple rear camera setup, that includes a 48MP primary shooter, an 8MP telephoto lens, and a 13MP ultra-wide lens. On the other hand, the OnePlus 7 combines a 48MP primary camera with a 5MP depth sensor.

The OnePlus 7 comes with a 16MP front-facing camera, while a 20MP selfie shooter pops up from hiding in the case of the Redmi K20 Pro.

Redmi K20 Pro vs OnePlus 7 showing camera modules

 

OnePlus has made significant improvements to the camera capabilities of the OnePlus 7 since launch. The camera is now capable enough to hold its own against the mid-range competition. The same can largely be said for the Redmi K20 Pro, though neither phone is entirely accurate and both have skew towards mild oversaturation and a brighter than natural scene. The OnePlus 7 continues to be a bit too aggressive with noise reduction while the K20 Pro ends up losing out on shadow details because of its focus on a bright and contrasty shot.

Ultimately both phones provide a relatively solid camera experience, albeit with some flaws.

Redmi K20 Pro camera samples

OnePlus 7 camera samples


Specs comparison

  Xiaomi Redmi K20 Pro OnePlus 7
Display 6.39-inch Super AMOLED
Full HD+
6.41-inch AMOLED
Full HD+
Processor 2.84GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 855
Adreno 640 GPU
2.84GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 855
Adreno 640 GPU
RAM 6/8GB 6/8GB
Storage 64/128/256GB
not expandable
128/256GB
not expandable
Camera 48MP, 8MP, and 16MP triple rear cameras
20MP front-facing camera
48MP and 5MP dual rear cameras
16MP front-facing camera
Battery 4,000mAh 3,700mAh
Software Android 9.0 Pie Android 9.0 Pie
Dimensions 156.7 x 74.3 x 8.8mm
191g
157.7 x 74.8 x 8.2mm
182g

Pricing and final thoughts

Redmi K20 Pro vs OnePlus 7 showing front display in hand

Pricing is one area where it’s almost impossible to get a leg up on Xiaomi. The Redmi K20 Pro may be a lot more similar to the OnePlus 7 Pro in terms of specs and features but is somehow even cheaper than the OnePlus 7.

  • OnePlus 7 pricing:
    • 6GB RAM/128GB storage – 32,999 rupees (~$480)
    • 8GB RAM/256GB storage – 37,999 rupees (~$550)
  • Xiaomi Redmi K20 Pro pricing:
    • 6GB RAM/128GB storage – 27,999 rupees (~$410)
    • 8GB RAM/256GB storage – 30,999 rupees (~$450)

And that’s what it ultimately boils down to. The OnePlus 7 may be one of the best affordable flagships around, but the Redmi K20 Pro manages to pack similar or better specs while playing in a lower price segment. The sheer value for money offered by the Redmi K20 Pro cannot be ignored, making it the phone to get if price is a major consideration in your buying decision.

Which phone would you opt for? Let us know in the comments!


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