Xiaomi has recently launched an upgraded version of the Redmi 12C, which was released just six months ago. The new device, called the Redmi 13C 5G, boasts 5G connectivity and a new design language, similar to the Redmi 12 5G. Surprisingly, Xiaomi has decided to keep a 4G model of the same device, which will be priced lower.
I’ve had the opportunity to spend a few hours with the new Redmi 13C 5G, and here are my initial thoughts. The device still falls under the entry-level category, but it offers a number of improvements over its predecessor. Let’s take a closer look at what’s new and what’s changed.
From the outset, it’s evident that the Redmi 13C 5G adopts a more contemporary design philosophy, reminiscent of newer models like the Redmi 12 5G launched in August this year. Departing from the basic plastic aesthetics of the Redmi 12C, the 13C 5G maintains a polycarbonate build for its frame and rear screen but presents a modern look with flat sides and a flat rear panel.
Despite its plastic composition, the rear panel stands out with Xiaomi’s Star Trail Design, showcasing two distinct patterns—one with running lines that appear to move when the phone is tilted, and the other with a familiar sparkle or shimmer. This dual finish adds a touch of creativity to an entry-level device, even though the color remains consistent.
Unlike the Redmi 12C, which had an IP52 rating, the Redmi 13C 5G is described by Xiaomi as splash-resistant and offering dust protection without an official IP rating.
Despite its sleek appearance, the phone feels quite large, likely due to its 6.74-inch, 1,600 x 720 pixels LCD panel. Protected by Corning’s Gorilla Glass 3, similar to the Redmi 12 5G, it features a U-shaped display notch at the top and a thick bezel at the bottom. This distinguishes it from the budget Redmi 12 5G, which has a hole-punch cavity for its selfie camera, giving it a more premium look. The display has been upgraded, now supporting a 90Hz maximum screen refresh rate and a 180Hz touch sampling rate, catering to gamers.
Internally, there’s an upgraded MediaTek Dimensity 6100+ SoC, a noticeable improvement over the Redmi 12C’s dated MediaTek Helio G85 SoC. Additionally, there are various RAM options available, including 4GB RAM and 128GB storage, 6GB RAM and 128GB storage, and even an 8GB RAM and 256GB storage variant, all offering 1TB of expandable storage. All these variants also support up to 8GB of expandable virtual RAM.
The camera setup remains similar, with a 50-megapixel primary camera paired with a depth camera. Selfies are handled by a 5-megapixel front-facing camera.
In terms of software, the Redmi 13C 5G runs on MIUI 14, based on Android 13. However, the software experience may be marred by preinstalled third-party apps and games, leading to spammy notifications.
The phone retains the 5,000mAh battery capacity of its predecessor but sees an increase in charging speeds from 10W to 18W, although a 10W charger is still included in the box. Notably, it features a Type-C port instead of the micro-USB port found in the previous model.
While the Redmi 13C 5G appears to be a comprehensive update, the actual pricing is yet to be revealed by Xiaomi. It’s expected to justify a higher price tag, considering it serves as the successor to the Redmi 12C. Xiaomi has also hinted at a Redmi 13C (4G) model with some differences, such as a lower-resolution selfie camera. Stay tuned for our review to determine whether the Redmi 13C 5G is worth the premium over the Redmi 12C or the 13C, and whether it competes effectively with the budget Redmi 12 5G.