You have already heard about the brand Realme? It is a relatively new smartphone manufacturer, which was founded only in 2018. Despite the fact that it is a manufacturer that falls under the large Chinese company BBK Electronics (similar to OnePlus, OPPO, Vivo or IQOO), it is currently missing its official distribution on the Czech or Slovak market.
The brand groups various gadgets, fitness bracelets, headphones, including smartphones. We decided to test an affordable model that is on sale at several international as well as local retailers. This is a model Realme 5i.
Where to buy Realme 5i?
A smartphone arrived at the newsroom Realme 5i, in a beautiful color marked Blue and a configuration of 4 GB RAM + 64 GB internal storage. If you want to buy this smartphone, we recommend that you buy it through the well-known e-shop Banggood.com. The offer also includes verified and fast transport of the EU Priority Line.
The affordable Realme 5i smartphone comes in a fresh yellow box of standard dimensions. It comes with the inscription of the model and basic technical specifications.
After opening the box, there is a paper package with accessories on the very top. There is a needle for extended sockets with a SIM card or memory card and the basic manual. The manufacturer did not pack any packaging for the smartphone this time.
Below is the smartphone itself glued with a protective foil and below it then the charging cable, which contains an even older microUSB connector. There is also a local terminal for a fast 10W charger.
Interesting smartphone processing
As far as workshop processing is concerned, at first glance you can feel that we have something unconventional here. The front side is covered by a display, the protective glass of which is also covered with a protective foil.
The side and back are made of plastic. The plastic material does not have a very premium effect as standard. In this price category, however, it is a pleasant change and traditional glass processing is thus replaced by another material.
The dimensions of the device stopped at 164,4 x 75 x 9,3 mm, while the weight stopped at 195 grams. Due to the extra-large battery, this is not a bad value at all. The plastic is processed, for example, the phone holds firmly and the individual parts do not make any unpleasant noises even with a stronger grip.
In addition, the back plastic side has small protrusions and is not smooth, which improves the grip of the smartphone and helps prevent it from slipping during use. The manufacturer definitely deserves praise for the processing.
The front of the device contains a large, 6,52 ″ display, which offers slightly thicker frames for today's conditions, both under the display and around the display. In its price category, however, it is a standard rather than a negative.
At the top of the screen is a drop-shaped cutout, which also contains the front camera. Above it is a speaker for telephony and also a group of sensors. In the lower part of the display there is only an unused so-called chin. The top edge is completely blank and smooth, like the other edges.
The bottom edge is a bit more interesting and contains a 3,5 mm audio connector, a primary microphone for telephony (with very clear sound), a charging connector (unfortunately, it is an older microUSB, in addition it is a rotated connector) and also a loud but average speaker.
On the left side there is a slot for inserting two NanoSIM cards (DualSIM) resp. MicroSDXC memory card (separate slot). Below is the volume control button.
On the right side, there is only the unlock button or. device lock. The button protrudes gently and is conveniently placed, it is easy to touch.
A very significant part of the rear wall is the relatively powerful module of the four rear cameras. This module is located in the upper left corner and impairs the use of the smartphone on a smooth surface. This problem can be solved by purchasing a simple case.
There is also an LED flash next to the camera module. Below is the Realme manufacturer's logo and the entire back wall has a pattern on it, thanks to which the phone is not smooth and slippery. The back wall is also home to the fingerprint reader. Mandatory recycling information is also below.
According to the manufacturer, the construction is also resistant to splashing by water, but it is not a certified protection.
Display: HD + resolution only
The smartphone features a 6,52 ″ IPS display (16 million colors) that offers a 20: 9 aspect ratio, HD + resolution (1600 x 720 pixels) and a fineness of 269 ppi.
This is a relatively coarse resolution, which is now below average and the missing pixels can really be felt at a glance, especially when switching from Full HD + or 2K resolution. However, for a simple user, such a panel will suffice.
The display is covered with unspecified Corning Gorilla Glass. On the other hand, the IPS display lacks richer colors (can be corrected in the settings) and would also enjoy higher maximum brightness. The minimum and automatic brightness or viewing angles were fine.
Performance: Middle class
In terms of performance, there is an eight-core mid-range processor called Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 (4 x 2.0 GHz Kryo 260 Gold & 4 x 1.8 GHz Kryo 260 Silver). The processor is made with 11 nm technology and is also complemented by the Adreno 610 graphics accelerator.
Performance is not a gaming device, but in terms of standard use, it is a decent response. The smartphone was easy to use and also less demanding multitasking. However, a version with a lower RAM capacity may have a problem with an increased number of running applications.
However, the graphic superstructure from Realme understood the hardware reliably. You can see the performance tests in AnTuT in the photo gallery above.
Storage: The bigger the better
Two versions of this smartphone are currently on sale. It is a configuration of 3 GB RAM + 32 GB eMMC storage or 4 GB RAM + 64 GB. Regarding the purchase of the device, we recommend the latter version, mainly due to the higher capacity of RAM.
When the device was first turned on, just over 53 GB of internal space was available, which is enough for a less demanding user. If there is not enough storage, there is also the option of expanding with a MicroSDXC memory card.
Fingerprint reader: Fast and reliable standard
A fingerprint reader is standard, but with a plastic surface material. It is gently recessed into the back of the smartphone, which helps to feel. The sensor is located in the upper half approximately at the level of the rear camera module.
The reactions of the reader were very good, fast, smooth and there was no problem with unlocking even in the case of fine grease or moisture on the fingers. The manufacturer deserves praise for the sensor used.
Android + ColorOS by Realme
Realme originally brings the Realme 5i smartphone with Android 9.0 Pie. Our piece still considers the system up to date. However, in some regions, the phone has already received the latest version called Android 10.
On the positive side, however, the security update was uploaded on April 5, 2020. It's only one month away, May, after Google's security enhancement page, which the manufacturer can improve in one of the following software updates.
The Android system also contains a relatively distinctive graphic superstructure from the Chinese manufacturer Realme. It is an extension of ColorOS, but from some sources you can also know the designation as Realme UI. The superstructure is available for the Realme 5i model in ColorOS version 6.0.1.
There may be some mixed feelings from using a colorful body. We are somehow used to Chinese manufacturers for the fact that it is a graphically powerful superstructure and almost every corner of the operating system is adapted. However, this is a relatively unconventional arrangement and logic of the elements.
For example, gesture control is accompanied only by very subtle animation that can be easily overlooked. The gear has been replaced by a special hexagon (as from Ikey) when switching to the settings, and the transparent elements in the application menu or in the notification center are also a design element of the past. This requires at least a very suitable choice of wallpaper.
In terms of optimization, however, it is a very good superstructure. Even at lower power, resp. we did not notice any problems with the used middle class processor, the phone responded smoothly and managed simple multitasking.
The camera did not heat up
A very debatable part of the smartphone is its photographic equipment. Up to four rear cameras are available at a given price.
Namely, it is the main sensor with a resolution of 12 MPx (f / 1.8). It is complemented by an 8 MPx (f / 2.3) ultra-wide sensor, a 2 MPx (f / 2.4) macro sensor and a 2 MPx (f / 2.4) depth sensor, which is responsible for background blur. There is HDR, panorama and other modes grouped by the Camera application from Realme.
Photographic features as such, however, are a slight disappointment. It is true that smartphones in this price range do not have top-notch cameras and various advanced features for capturing breathtaking images, compared to the real Xiaomi smartphones, we expected a little more from Realme.
Full-size original photos are available at the following link.
The photographs themselves showed signs of blur even in daylight. Although the color rendering and wide angle of view tried to save the situation, this photographic set does not catch on to competitive and often comparably expensive devices.
Widescreen shooting will please, but it has a basic resolution of 8 MPx and turning this mode on is unconventional. It is located in the top bar, where by default we find the video resolution or access to settings. However, a somewhat rough control is due to the superstructure of the system, which we described in the previous chapter of this review.
Two of the four cameras (main and ultra-wide) offer at least photos suitable for social networks. On the other hand, the other two sensors are practically useless. The macro sensor offers very poor focus, and the background blur also plays a role in the software.
There is also the possibility of shooting up to 4K (30fps) video, due to the very poor image stabilization, we recommend using a lower 1080p (30fps) resolution. The front camera is really basic. It is mainly used for video calls, has a resolution of 8 MPx (f / 2.0) and supports HDR and 1080p video recording.
Connectivity: 4G missing
In terms of connectivity, it is a standard equipped smartphone that meets modern equipment elements, including 4G internet connection (the global version offers channels 1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 20, 28, 38, 40, 41).
Features also include dual Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac, along with support for Wi-Fi Direct. There is also Bluetooth 5.0, A2DP, LE, but also GPS with support for A-GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO or BDS.
A specific category of users will also enjoy the built-in FM radio with the appropriate software, as well as the standard 3,5 mm audio connector. Unfortunately, an older, impractical and even rotated microUSB connector is used for power supply, NFC is also absent.
Battery: 5000 mAh
The Realme 5i smartphone is equipped with a battery with an above-average capacity of 5000 mAh. It is a Li-Po battery, which is definitely an advantage over competing models due to its capacity. The phone also supports 10W cable charging, but via an older microUSB connector.
In cooperation with optimized software, lower display resolution and energy-saving processor, endurance is without problems even at the level of two days. The less demanding user can even achieve even longer life with more than seven hours of display on.
Our use included active use of social networks, hourly telephony and occasional video watching, respectively. casual gaming. The battery life pleasantly surprised us and it is one of the best features of this cheap smartphone.
Final rating: Good cheap smartphone
Realme 5i is a smartphone that really pleasantly surprised us in the newsroom. Yes, don't expect a top camera or performance at the level of flagships from him, you also have to get used to a special and non-traditional superstructure coloros.
Realme 5i Global version
There is no extra charge for EU Priority Line.
We recommend choosing the EU Priority Line, where you will not pay extra. Customs fees and any VAT will be handled directly by you. Shipping can be selected in the cart after entering the delivery address. EU Priority Line delivery typically takes approximately 15 days, but may take longer.
On the other hand, in its price category, it is a truly exemplary device with well-optimized software and a large battery. So if you are looking for a smartphone for a less demanding user, this model is a great choice.