The wide screen might be the only upgrade over the Redmi Note 4 but it's the usual all-round package and the price is tough to beat, again. With the same Snapdragon 625 under the hood, the Redmi 5 Plus is not the most powerful midranger out there, but quite capable still of a pretty good bang for the buck.
Some of the more recent potential rivals that come to mind are the vivo V7+ and the Oppo F5. The former has a lower screen resolution with a far superior selfie experience. There is Face Unlock too, but the asking price is higher than Xiaomi's.
The Oppo F5 is probably the perfect match for the Redmi 5 Plus, though - again - a bit more expensive. You get a similar screen, a slightly more powerful processor and a much better selfie experience. The F5 also has Face Unlock.
The LG Q6 is close behind in pretty much every aspect but availability. Still, if tall screen is a must, and the Chinese offers are not an option where you are, LG is the way to go.
Finally, the Redmi 5 Plus costs about as much as a Mi 5X or Mi A1 on some markets. The Mi 5X/A1 duo hasn't got the wide screen but makes up for that with a great dual-camera at the back. Plus, if MIUI is not your cup of tea, the Mi A1 runs vanilla Android Oreo.
The Redmi 5 Plus brings a single new feature over the Redmi Note 4, the wide screen. We can see how it may not be enough to justify upgrading, so Redmi Note 4 owners might as well decide to sit tight and wait for Nougat. Everyone else looking for a reasonably priced phablet might want to give the 5 Plus a good look.
Sure, the Snapdragon 625 is aging but it still packs enough punch to turn day-to-day tasks around trouble-free. The big battery and the efficient chip make the Redmi 5 Plus a longevity champ, while the wide screen is the most trending upgrade any phone can receive. In the end though, it's the bargain price that opens so many doors for the Redmi 5 Plus.
Where the Redmi 5 Plus fails to make a splash - as in exceed expectations the way the Redmi Notes usually do - is the part of being the Redmi Note 4's successor. Yes, it has more screen but that's about it.
If you forget about the Note 4 and change the perspective, the Redmi 5 Plus is a cheap but capable phablet that can successfully compete on so many levels: screen quality, imaging, battery backup. Ironic as it sounds, the 5 Plus may not be good enough to make the Note 4 obsolete but still better than most in its price bracket.
Special thanks to HonorBuy for providing the review unit.