Realme decided to send us a care package that had the Realme Buds Air, the Lamy x Realme fountain pen, a couple of their wired earbuds, and two smartphones: the Realme 5 Pro and 5i. We both picked our phones and this was our experience. Stay tuned, though, as we’ll be giving away both phones very soon!
After opening its first concept store in Iloilo, I started to really pay attention to Realme’s product line. I’m normally used to flagship smartphones, but the tech nerd in me could not resist seeing what budget phones out there could handle their weight.
For this review, I’ll start with the things the 5 Pro excels at, and then move on to my nitpicks. For my heavy usage (heavy content viewing and gaming), the 5 Pro is great at three things: the processor, the camera, and the battery.
The 5 Pro sports the Snapdragon 712 of Qualcomm’s 700-series chipset. For my gaming experience (primarily Marvel: Super War), there are no complaints. I was consistently the fastest person to load onto the game, and any issues I had were attributable to PH’s horrible internet. Honestly, the experience itself is seamless if not for the few times that the camera app would lag upon opening.
Talking about the camera, the 5 Pro’s camera set-up is, in a word: versatile with a 48MP Sony IMX56 sensor, an 8MP ultra-wide camera, a 2MP Macro camera, and a 2MP Portrait sensor. The selfie camera in the front is 16MP. The AI in the phone tries to approximate what shots you’re trying to take and adjusts accordingly (ie portrait mode or group shots). It was a bit funny when the camera thought the figures were taking a group shot. It’s a little soft on the details in some areas, and edge detection isn’t always perfect especially with finer details like hair, but those are very little nitpicks given the price point. This camera is very solid and surprised me a lot of times when it could hold its weight against my Oneplus 7 Pro.
Finally, the battery of the 5 Pro is killer. This is something I especially need as a power user. I could last a full day with the phone connected to wifi and to my Bluetooth headsets while still using it heavily for games and content viewing. If I was ever in a pinch, the fast charger that comes in the box gets me to about 70% in 30 minutes. At the price point, the battery life is excellent.
The worst parts about my experience with the phone are the 6.3-inch FHD+ LCD IPS screen, and ColorOS. The display is fine at this price, but going from the 90 hz AMOLED display that I’m used to was a difficult process. ColorOS, however, may be the worst part of this phone. It comes with a lot of bloatware, and the user interface was just difficult to deal with at best. I immediately changed launcher when I booted up the phone.
Over-all, the Realme 5 Pro may have a best-in-class camera set-up, a great gaming experience, and strong battery life. If you don’t care about the OS that much and aren’t as picky about the display. This smartphone is an amazing value starting at P11,999.
Took photos of my buddy Rai’s collection with the Realme 5 Pro. The 5 Pro has a quad-camera set-up that makes this camera super versatile. The camera itself tries to approximate what shots you’re trying to take and adjusts accordingly (ie portrait mode or group shots). It was a bit funny when the camera thought the figures were taking a group shot.