The smartphone market is filled with brands, each of whom trying to win the entire gamut. Earlier, if they had one or two offerings in each segment, now they aim to place one for each stratum. Realme 3i is the brand new budget phone that was launched a few days back beside the Realme X. It is the subdued self of Realme 3 and is priced less (Realme 3i review हिंदी में पढ़िए).
So, the obvious question hanging over Realme 3i is – Should you buy it over Realme 3? This is followed by – Whether it makes the cut as a budget charmer?
Luckily for you, we used the phone as our daily unit for the past couple of days and here we are with our in-depth Realme 3i review. By the end of this review, we hope you are able to make an informed decision.
- Realme 3i Price and Specification
- Realme 3i Review: Box Contents
- Realme 3i Review: Display, Design and Build
- Realme 3i Review: Performance and Software
- Realme 3i Review: Camera
- Realme 3i Review: Battery, Connectivity, and Audio
- Realme 3i Review: Verdict with Pros and Cons
But before we jump to the review, let’s have a quick glance upon the Realme 3i specifications –
Realme 3i Specs
Model Realme 3i Display 6.2-inch HD+ (720x1520p) IPS LCD Dewdrop screen with 19:9 aspect ratio Processor 12nm 2GHz Mediatek Helio P60 SoC, Mali G72 MP3 GPU RAM 3/4GB Internal Storage 32/64GB Software Color OS 6.0 (Android Pie 9) Back Camera 13MP (f/1.8) +2MP (f/2.4) Front Camera 13MP (f/2.0) Battery 4230mAh Indian Price
- 3GB RAM+ 32GB: Rs. 7,999
- 4GB RAM+ 64GB: Rs. 9,999
Realme 3i unboxing: What’s inside?
Realme 3i clones the box of big brother barring the title and logos. Inside, you have a –
- The Phone (Tada!)
- Charging head
- Micro-USB cable
- Sim ejector tool
- Transparent TPU case
- Usual guide booklets (which we all love to read.)
Realme 3i Review: Display, Design, and Build
Realme 3i plays the visual playbook of Realme 3 to the dot. The fascia adorns a 6.2-inch LCD HD+ panel with a large screen-to-body ratio of 88.30% and an aspect ratio of 19:9. It has negligibly thin bezels thanks to the dewdrop notch up top. Realme gives the Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection for this display.
Although it features auto-brightness, the legibility is low and we wished the display to be more bright outdoors. At times, the display was a tad slow to register our touch. It happened rarely therefore we kept using the device as daily driver.
Realme 3i adopts textured plastic back with Diamond patterns. The phone comes in Diamond Red, Diamond Blue, Diamond Black. Our unit flaunted the Red color with a tint of blue at the bottom look pleasing to the eyes.
The back is home to a fingerprint scanner and the dual rear camera. This fingerprint scanner is responsive and fairly reachable. You could alternatively use a snappy Face recognition to unlock the device. But, we don’t share similar confidence upon it in dim environments. Realme 3i is sturdy without much heft and stays pretty well in the hands.
It includes a 3.5mm headphone jack, a micro-USB port, the power button, and the volume rockers. The buttons are tactile and easily accessible for single-handed usage.
Realme has done a fine job in the aesthetic aspects as it feels solid and looks great from all sides.
Realme 3i Review: Performance and Software Experience
Realme for the ‘3i’ has opted for the MediaTek Helio P60 chipset as its brain. On the other hand, Realme 3 employs a higher Helio P70 instead. That said, the difference isn’t day and night. Plus, 3i’s processor handles performance pretty well.
ALSO READ: Redmi 7A vs Realme C2 Comparison
If we go into benchmarks, here are the results of our internal testing:
Benchmark Test Scores AnTuTu 132492 Geekbench 4 Single-core 1419 Geekbench 4 Multi-core 4971 3D Mark Sling Shot 1116 (OpenGL), 1050 (Vulkan)
As for real-world performance, the Realme 3i managed to handle most day to day tasks without getting into any trouble. We were able to keep about 5-6 apps open in the background and it was able to switch between them without reloading. We also played some of the popular games like PUBG and Asphalt 8 on the Realme 3i and we manage to hold a pritty good space during the play. PUBG mobile runs on medium settings (30fps) by default and when we cranked it up to high settings, the expected stutters and frame drops appeared. Besides a few minor speed bumps and loading hiccups, we had a smooth gaming experience overall.
Here also you get Color OS 6.0 skinned atop Android 9.0 Pie with optimizations for better battery and memory management. You get to customize the home screen layout, activate navigation gestures, screen-off gestures, real-time network speed indicator, Night Shield (blue-light filter), tinker the color temperature, etc. There is a dedicated ‘Game space’, a game optimization service that prioritizes memory for the game at play. It carries add ons like do-not-disturb mode and brightness lock.
Moving on, the Realme 3i runs on Android Pie based custom Color OS 6.0. It is feature rich but full of bloatware. Gladly, most of the bloatware can be uninstalled. Yes, we stress on the “most” part as there were still many apps left. The dewdrop notch doesn’t gel well with all apps. Some UI elements stay longer on-screen than necessary like heads-up notification and other pop-up windows. We still feel that this OS is Realme’s Achilles Heel and we look forward to a polished UI revamp.
Realme 3i Review: Camera Performance
Starting with the specs, you have a 13MP selfie snapper upfront in that dewdrop notch. At the back also, there is a 13MP primary shooter followed by a 2MP sensor for depth data. On the video front, you get to record at 1080p@30fps.
The camera app includes nice-haves like HDR, Portrait mode, Nightscape, Panorama, and Chroma Boost mode. The beauty mode does what it says in the name and the Chroma Boost mode saturates photos with a pinch of processing.
Here are the camera samples and our analysis:Portraiture from Realme 3i1 of 2
The Portrait shots do a decent job with background blur and edge detection. However, it is far from perfect.
Selfies came out pretty good with an alright job in edge detection as well as bokeh in the portrait snaps. The beauty mode does wash away some details out of the face. But, not a big deal!Zooming into the Realme 3i1 of 3
The 2x Zoom does an impressive job bringing the required amount of sharpness and details to the subject.Testing the camera in different modes1 of 3
Chroma Boost makes the photos Instagram-ready.Realme 3i Indoor shots1 of 2
The Nightscape mode does a decent job in enhancing the dim-lit indoor shots. But has a lackluster performance outdoors in the real night time.
Realme 3i supports Camera2API 2.0 natively, hopefully, some developer will develop a Google Camera custom port built for the Realme 3i.
Realme 3i Review: Battery, Connectivity, and Audio
It borrows the 4230mAh battery from Realme 3. There isn’t anything to complain about the battery life, save the absence of fast charging support. The bundled 10W charger takes roughly two hours to fill the tank. For an average user, it will easily endure for a day.
Just like the Realme 3, the basic connectivity solutions are here like FM Radio, USB OTG, WiFi, Hotspot, Bluetooth 4.2, etc. Call experience is fine through the earpiece. It supports Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by, dual VoLTE) without dual-band WiFi compatibility.
The bottom-firing speaker offers an average audio output.
ALSO READ: Xiaomi Redmi 7 Review
Realme 3i Review – Should you buy it or Realme 3?
To answer whether Realme 3i is a budget charmer – we say Yes! it definitely is. It has an eye-catching design, decent performance, and massive battery life. Although the software and camera need improvement, we feel it brings a lot to the table for its modest price.
Having said that, its priced a 1000 bucks lesser than the Realme 3. It cuts corners with the underlying processor. It also bears the same issues we had with the Realme 3 in terms of sluggish software, and a mediocre camera. So, everything rounds up to your budget. Summing up, you could safely consider this one, if you’re on a limited budget and the aforementioned issues don’t bother you much.
- Massive Battery life
- Awe-worthy design
- Good build quality
- Dedicated card slot
- Bloated software
- No fast charging
- Weak low-light camera performance