Realme: Here comes a new challenger

Realme 2, Realme 2 Pro, Realme C1 unleashed in Southeast Asia
Realme 2 Pro family
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The mid-range smartphone market is undoubtedly the sweet spot for consumers, especially in Southeast Asia where it’s extremely price sensitive. It’s no wonder brands like Xiaomi, ASUS and honor rule the roost. It looks like OPPO, one of the top smartphone makers in the world, doesn’t want to get left out of the party. And it’s applying a similar strategy to Huawei – that is, spawning a sub-brand called Realme

At its regional launch in Indonesia, the new-kid-on-the-block introduced a trio of devices – the Realme 2, Realme 2 Pro and Realme C1. Like honor, Realme targets the tech-savvy, digital-first youth – with a portfolio of devices offering best-in-class performance and contemporary design.

Does Realme have what it takes to take on the likes of Xiaomi, ASUS and honor? Let’s see.

Realme 2
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Realme 2

The Realme 2 rocks a 6.2-inch HD+ (1520×720) notched display that offers a commendable 88.8 percent screen-to-body ratio. The display is housed in a 2.5D body made of nanoscale composite material with a diamond-like effect. The treatment is reminiscent of the OPPO F7 Diamond Black and it looks pretty good on the offset.

Under the hood, it’s powered by an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 processor with up to 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage. Storage is expandable by an additional 256GB via microSD.

In the camera department, the device sports a 13MP f/2.2 + 2MP dual-lens camera setup on the rear for Portrait Mode and depth-of-field effects.

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The front 8MP f/2.2 camera is assisted by the AI Beauty 2.0 software to ensure selfies always look good.

The device gets juiced by a large 4,320mAh battery, optimised by an AI Power Manager that keeps the phone going for up to 44 hours (talktime), 18 hours of Wi-Fi music play, or up to 10 hours of gaming.

The Realme 2 is priced at IDR1,999,000 (MYR545) for the 3GB RAM + 32GB storage model, while the 4GB RAM + 64BG storage model will go for IDR2,399,000 (MYR654).

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Realme 2 Pro

The flagship Realme 2 Pro rocks an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 660AIE processor that’s paired with up to 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM and 128GB of UFS 2.1 onboard storage. There’s an option to expand storage further via microSD (up to 256GB).

At first glance, you could easily mistake the Realme 2 Pro for an OPPO F9, and the resemblance is uncanny. From the waterdrop screen (Realme calls it the “Dewdrop Full Screen,” to the overall design and placements of the dual-lens rear camera and fingerprint sensor. It shouldn’t be a huge surprise of course, since they spawn from the same tree.

The device packs a large 6.3-inch Full HD+ IPS display (2340×1920) with incredibly slim bezels and boasting an impressive 90.8 percent screen-to-body ratio. Unsurprisingly, it’s the same screen-to-body ratio offered by the OPPO F9.

It’s offered in Black Sea, Blue Ocean, and Ice Lake colour options.

It comes with a fairly large 3,500mAh battery, assisted by AI sleep mode that employs intelligent power saving strategies to prolong battery life. Realme claims you’ll get up to 10 hours of continues playback. There’s no fast-charging, and the device charges via a conventional microUSB port.

Camera-wise, the Realme 2 Pro comes with 16MP f/1.7 + 2MP f/2.4 (depth) dual-lens rear cameras, utilising the Sony IMX398 sensor coupled with a 6P lens. There’s AI scene recognition, Dual Pixel autofocus and electronic image stabilisation (EIS) for video.

For selfie lovers, the Realme 2 Pro comes with a 16MP f/2.0 shooter with AI beautification features.

The Realme 2Pro runs ColorOS 5.2 based on Android 8.1 Oreo.

The device retails in Indonesia for IUDR2,899,000 (MYR790) for the 4GB RAM + 64GB storage model. The 6GB RAM + 64GB storage model retails for IDR3,299,000 (MYR899) while the top-of-the-line model with 8GB of RAM + 128GB of storage is priced at IDR3,699,000 (MYR1,009). The looks to compete head on with the ZenFone Max Pro M1 and Xiaomi Redmi Note 5.

Realme C1
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Realme C1

The entry-level Realme C1 packs a large 6.2-inch HD+ (1520×720) display with a notch offering a screen-to-body ratio of 88 percent. Under the hood, it’s powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 chipset, mated to 2GB of RAM and 16GB of onboard storage (expandable via microSD).

The no-frills device boasts a “Mega Battery” of 4,230mAh battery that is claimed to deliver up to 18 hours of music playback, 15 hours of video playback or 10 hours of gaming.

The Realme C1 is priced at IDR1,499,000 (MYR410) and will go on sale at Lazada Indonesia during the 11.11 sale at a special price of IDR1,399,000 (MYR381).

Coming soon to Malaysia

Realme is set to make an entry to local shores. Stay tuned.

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