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Xiaomi Mi A1 vs Moto G5S Plus: Which Phone Should You Buy?

Xiaomi Mi A1 vs Moto G5S Plus: Which Phone Should You Buy?

Highlights

  • Both phones run on near-stock Android
  • They have very similar specifications as well
  • The Xiaomi Mi A1 is an official Android One phone

The under Rs. 15,000 segment of smartphones has seen a lot of new launches of late, but there are two phones in particular that really stand out. Those are the Moto G5S Plus (review) and the Xioami Mi A1 (review), and if you're not sure which of those two is the one for you, then you've come to the right place. Let's take a look at which phone you should buy.

Xiaomi Mi A1 vs Moto G5S Plus: Design
Both phones have metal unibodies and dual rear-cameras. The camera sticks out in the back, but the bump is more prominent in the Moto G5S. The overall design is fairly similar, with curved sides and edges that rock a little on flat surfaces, and the antenna bands run along the top and bottom.

The main difference is the position of the fingerprint scanner - the Xioami Mi A1 has its scanner on the back, like most phones from the brand, while the Moto G5S Plus follows the Motorola style of having the fingerprint scanner on the chin of the phone, under the display. The Moto G5S Plus is also a little thicker, at 9.5mm, while the Xiaomi Mi A1 is a sliver phone at 7.3mm, despite having a larger battery - the Moto G5S Plus has a 3000mAh battery and the Xiaomi Mi A1 has a 3080mAh battery.

Winner: Xiaomi Mi A1

Xiaomi Mi A1 vs Moto G5S Plus: Specifications
In terms of specs, the two phones have a lot in common. Both have 5.5-inch full-HD displays (1080x1920 pixels), although we felt that the Moto G5S Plus looked a little better, though it's a close-run thing. Both phones are also powered by a Snapdragon 625 SoC, with 4GB RAM, and 64GB of internal storage. Both have hybrid dual-SIM slots where the second slot can either house a SIM or a microSD card.

Winner: Moto G5S Plus

Xiaomi Mi A1 vs Moto G5S Plus: Performance
Despite the very similar specifications, the Xiaomi Mi A1 edged ahead a little on the performance front. The Moto G5S Plus runs a little hotter, and the Xiaomi Mi A1 also scored better on benchmarks. Both phones also feature fast charging, but the Xiaomi Mi A1 has a USB Type-C cable while the Moto G5S Plus has an old-fashioned Micro-USB port. The Xiaomi Mi A1 also has an IR emitter, which can be used to control your TV or home appliances, which is a cool plus.


Winner: Xiaomi Mi A1

Xiaomi Mi A1 vs Moto G5S Plus: Software
Both phones run on Android Nougat with very little customisation - Motorola has been doing this for a while, and the Xiaomi Mi A1 is a part of the revived Android One initiative. This latter point gives the Xiaomi Mi A1 a bit of an edge over the Moto G5S Plus, not because of major differences now, but because, as an official part of the Android One program, it's guaranteed to get software updates.

Winner: Xiaomi Mi A1

Xiaomi Mi A1 vs Moto G5S Plus: Battery life
Both phones do a good job on the battery front, but the Moto G5S edges ahead here. In our video loop test, the phone delivered 11 hours and 15 minutes of non-stop video playback, while the Xiaomi M1 A1 lasted for 10 hours and 18 minutes. Both are pretty good results, and in real-world usage too, both phones did well, but the power management on the Moto G5S Plus is a little better.

Winner: Moto G5S Plus

Xiaomi Mi A1 vs Moto G5S Plus: Camera
The two phones use different approaches to the dual rear camera setup they both have. While the Moto G5S Plus uses one 13-megapixel RGB sensor and one 13-megapixel monochrome sensor, the Xiaomi Mi A1 has two 12-megapixel sensors and the difference here lies in the lenses instead - one is a telephoto lens and the other standard. Thanks to this, the Moto G5S Plus does a better job in high contrast scenarios, and low light photography. On the other hand, the Xiaomi Mi A1 can zoom in thanks to the telephoto lens, making it more versatile, and the dedicated portrait mode on the Xiaomi Mi A1 delivers better photos than the depth mode on the Moto G5S Plus. Overall, the Xiaomi Mi A1 is our pick in the camera department.

Winner: Xiaomi Mi A1

Verdict
The two phones share a lot in common, and we think that for the budget, they're both good options. However, we would pick the Xiaomi Mi A1 over the Moto G5S Plus. It runs cooler and has a guarantee of software updates. It also does better on the camera front, except in low light. For these reasons, it's our pick, but the Moto G5S Plus is also a good phone to buy, and it delivers slightly better battery life and a slightly better display, so if those things matter more to you, then it should be your pick.

 
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  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Performance
  • Battery life
  • Camera
  • Value for money
  • Good
  • Good build quality
  • Stock Android
  • Turbo charging support
  • Decent camera performance
  • Bad
  • Slightly bulky
  • No VoLTE support at launch
  • Gets warm in use
  • No notification light

Display

5.50-inch

Processor

2GHz octa-core

Front Camera

8-megapixel

Resolution

1080x1920 pixels

RAM

4GB

OS

Android 7.1

Storage

64GB

Rear Camera

13-megapixel

Battery Capacity

3000mAh
  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Performance
  • Battery life
  • Camera
  • Value for money
  • Good
  • Stock Android with some Mi enhancements
  • Premium design
  • Dual cameras
  • Bad
  • Average battery life
  • Very slippery
  • Poor photo quality in low light

Display

5.50-inch

Processor

2GHz octa-core

Front Camera

5-megapixel

Resolution

1080x1920 pixels

RAM

4GB

OS

Android 7.1.2

Storage

64GB

Rear Camera

12-megapixel

Battery Capacity

3080mAh
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