Xiaomi’s first Fire TV in India is here with the launch of the Redmi Smart Fire TV 32. As the name suggests, it’s a 32-inch smart TV that runs on Amazon’s Fire TV OS. Available at an introductory price of Rs. 11,999 (Rs. 13,999 otherwise), making it a very competitive segment of 32-inch TVs priced under Rs. 18,000. Let’s try and see what it brings to the table:
Design: The TV sports a very familiar Redmi TV series build quality and design with a plastic body along with a thin bezel around the display. On the front, you get the Redmi branding, while the LED indicator and physical button for power on and off sit centrally placed at the bottom. The back has side mounted ports – 2 USB A ports, 2 HDMI 2.0 ports (one ARC and no eARC), an ethernet port and A/V ports along with 3.5mm audio jack and antenna. The TV is light, weighing nearly 4kg and comes in a more eco-friendly box that can be later set up to make different shapes such as a barstool, table, etc., so you don’t have to dump the box somewhere. This isn’t a very high quality or precision body, but pretty much in line with what we see on most budget smart TVs today. The remote control has Alexa voice assistant button, apps shortcut buttons along with the usual power volume and Home and back buttons. The remote seems decent enough in build quality and its buttons don’t require excessive pressure, being fairly responsive in use.
Audio and video: Coming to the crux of it, the Redmi Smart Fire TV 32 features a 32-inch HD-ready (1366x768) LCD display and 20watt speakers (10wattx2). It’s powered by a quad-core Cortex A35 CPU, Mali G31 MP2 GPU and 1GB of RAM, plus 8GB of storage (of which around 5GB is usable). The TV runs on Fire TV OS 22.214.171.124. You can cast videos from YouTube on your smartphone to the TV and it works without any glitches. There’s also AirPlay support with HomeKit, so you can watch videos or images from your iOS device to the TV and can also use voice commands to control any HomeKitenabled devices at your place, which you can also do for Alexa-enabled devices since this is a Fire TV product. The TV does display an ad right in the middle of the default Homescreen, it is what it is. The TV’s picture quality is what you can expect from a sub-15k TV. You get HDR support in YouTube and Netflix (Amazon Prime doesn’t provide content in HDR under 2160p), though it isn’t going to make your experience significantly better considering the resolution here and the panel brightness.
The TV does a good job of handling details when watching live sports with no jarring effects and no refresh issues. It handled 720p live streams at 30 and 50 frames per second without any noticeable stuttering. For general performance, I wouldn’t exactly say it’s very snappy but it’s still responsive enough and doesn’t show any lags in daily use to provide a decent experience. The OS is smooth enough for you to jump between your streaming apps without having to worry of any response issues. I especially liked that you can select different display settings for each input source.
The dual 10watt speakers are sufficiently loud and quite clear for a small room, which seems to be the apt setting for this TV. Anything larger or with a few viewers around and you might want to get an external set of speakers to connect. Dolby Atmos support is present but it’s not lossless since there’s no eARC present here, but that’s expected at this price range.
Verdict: All in all, the Redmi Smart Fire TV 32 offers some good value for the price tag. It performs relatively well on the performance front with no major lags or stuttering during day-to-day usage, has a decent display for its size and sufficiently loud speakers in place. Xiaomi’s first Fire TV in India is a 32-inch TV isn’t that big a surprise considering this size segment still makes up for a majority in the TV market, and the Redmi Smart Fire TV 32 seems to be a worthy contender in that TV market segment now.