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Realme 3i quick review: Realme 3-like features at a more affordable price

first_imgRealme kicked off 2019 with the launch of the Realme 3, which was a budget smartphone that offered a Dewdrop display, Helio P70 chipset, glossy gradient design and a long-lasting battery. For a phone priced around Rs 9,000, the Realme 3 certainly packed a punch. Four months later, the company decided to launch a version of the Realme 3 that is more affordable and packs a lot of the same feature while still keeping the design fresh. The company is calling this the Realme 3i.The Realme 3i was launched in India alongside the Realme X (Review) on Monday, July 15. Unlike the Realme X which is a premium mid-range smartphone, the Realme 3i is a budget phone that slots in between the Realme C2 and Realme 3 with a starting price of Rs 7,999. It will be available for purchase on Flipkart and It shares a lot of the same specs as the Realme 3, but with a previous generation MediaTek chipset and a diamond-cut rear panel in a unique new gradient colour. I spent some time with the Realme 3i and here are my first impressions.To set the Realme 3i apart from the Realme 3, the company decided to change the feel of the rear panel. It is actually similar to the Realme C2 in that it gets a diamond-cut pattern on a plastic panel that offers a matt-finish. Realme has used the diamond pattern design a few of its phones in the past and the company has tried to make it look unique here by offering the Realme 3i in three colour options – Diamond Black, Diamond Blue and Diamond Red.advertisementThe unit I checked out was Diamond Red which by far looks the most unique out of the lot as it offers a combination of red and blue hues with a hint of purple in the middle. The textured matt finish makes the colour look pleasant without looking too shiny or glossy. The finish does make the Realme 3i a bit slippery to hold, but the phone feels sturdy enough to survive a few drops. The Reame 3i comes with a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor and face unlock, both of which feel snappy and convenient to use. The power button on the left and volume keys on the right are placed above center and are easy to reach. The bottom part of the frame sees a speaker grille, microUSB port and a 3.5mm headphone jack.The Realme 3i sports a 6.2-inch Dewdrop display with an HD+ resolution, much like the Realme 3. The display looks familiar in a good way. You get a large screen real estate where the bezels on the top and sides are minimal. The chin is thick, but easy enough to ignore. Colours on screen look good and Realme offers some attractive wallpapers to make the display feel lively, Brightness levels also look good indoors, but we will save our verdict on the quality of display in our full review after testing the screen while watching videos and playing games.Powering the Realme 3i is a Helio P60 chipset, which is a pretty neat mid-range processor but a fairly old one in 2019. We have seen the P60 power phones like the Realme 1 last year. It is a 12nm-based octa-core processor that should be capable of running day-to-day operations with ease. Of course, we can only know for sure after stressing the phone, so do watch out for our full review. Based on my brief interaction with the device, the Realme 3i feels smooth enough out of the box. Apps generally open quickly and the UI seems fluid. You get up to 4GB of RAM with the Realme 3i and 64GB of internal storage, which is expandable via a microSD card up to 256GB. The Realme 3i ships with ColorOS 6 based on Android 9 Pie, which is what one expects to see from Realme phones in 2019. With ColorOS 6, you get features like app drawer, a fresh gradient theme UI and gesture navigation, among other things. It’s heavy on customization and features, some of which may be useful to you. It also comes with a bunch of preloaded apps NewsPoint, Web Novel, WPS Office, WhatsApp, Messenger, Facebook Lite and a regular Facebook app, among others. Yo do get the option to uninstall most preloaded apps if you find it cluttering up the device.The budget Realme 3i packs a dual camera setup that includes a 13-megapixel primary camera and a 2-megapixel secondary depth sensor. Up front, the phone gets a 13-megapixel selfie camera within the waterdrop notch. These sensors are once again similar to what the Realme 3 offers. The Realme 3i also supports features like Nightscape and Chroma Boost. The former is used to capture brighter low-light shots while the latter bumps up saturaton levels when required. In my brief time with the device, I couldn’t test these two modes. Typical daylight shots do look good with pleasing colours and decent clarity, but it will be interesting to see how the camera holds up in low-light.advertisement Like the Realme 3, the Realme 3i also gets a large 4,230mAh battery which is nice to see. It was hard to determine the battery performance in my brief time with the device, but I will have more to say in my full review. Based on my experience with the Realme 3, the Realme 3i should also deliver over a full day battery life on a single charge and the power efficient Helio P60 chip should help with that as well.With the addition of the Realme 3i to the portfolio, the company has made sure that you have plenty of choices in the sub-Rs 10,000. It is a strategy that Xiaomi has employed over the past few years, so it’s not suprising that Realme is following suit. The Realme 3i base model slots in between the Realme C2 and Realme 3, and rightly so because it gets the best of both worlds. The design is very Realme C2-like with an attractive gradient diamond-cut design while the internals are largely similar to the Realme 3. Stay tuned to our full review of the Realme 3i where we will dig deeper into the phone’s performance and battery life, among other things.ALSO READ | Realme X review: Offers everything you need under Rs 20,000ALSO READ | Realme 3i launched: Key specs, features, price in India and everything you need to knowlast_img read more