Par Alex Walker-Todd, general public technical writer | 27 November 2020

If you are looking for 5G connectivity on a budget, the Realms 7 5G proves there is no shame in choosing the cheapest option In fact, this phone hits way above its weight, considering what is offered for the money

Black Friday sales season is here! The best deals are not always on Amazon The prices listed above are the best available right now, but you may need to buy quickly as some offers will be sold out.

The Realme line 7 has pushed the boundaries in terms of what you can expect from an affordable phone in 2020; with the 7 standard serving as a brilliant budget option, while the higher price of 7 Pro places it in the mid-range level, equipped with a few noticeable tips to grab your attention

As these devices claimed their status as remarkable budget offers in October 2020, Realme actually had a third member waiting backstage, in the Realme 7 5G.

While COVID and its effects on the company's supply chain meant that the 7 5G was not ready to be launched alongside her siblings, a month later, no less powerful a mix of impressive hardware at a low price – Realme bread and butter

Despite its name, the Realms 7 5G is not just Realme 7 basic with a faster modem, although with understandable similarities It required a completely different chipset to support such speeds and is one of the first phones thanks to our test glove to integrate MediaTek's Dimensity 800U chipset.

So the question is whether this remixed Realme is as much of a bargain as its brethren..

There is no doubt about Realme's DNA 7 in the design of this phone It is almost identical – in terms of dimensions and weight – to the standard model, which means that it is quite a large and heavy device, with nearly 200 grams The domino type camera module, however, looks like the one behind Realme 7 Pro

Plastic back is comfortable to hold, proves to be quite scratch resistant (although Realme is also throwing a free case in the box for good measure) and sports the same split reflective design as the other two members of the series 7; with a more subdued overall finish than some of Realme's other recent offerings (like Realme X50 5G)

The unique Baltic blue colourway in which the phone is offered, with its reflective satin finish, adds an extra level of sophistication to the design, while repelling stains and fingerprints well

Realme favors slim side fingerprint sensors, which in this case also serve as a power button It is well placed on the right side of the phone and is always responsive, with the option of an amazingly fast face unlock alternative (although simple RGB only), if you prefer

For the price, it’s not surprising that there is no official IP certification or anything of that nature, but there is at least a layer of Gorilla Glass 3 offering some resistance to chips and scratches on the phone screen, reinforced with a pre-installed plastic screen protector

The glasses are a little thick on all sides of the screen, especially regarding the chin along the bottom, but they are not so thick that, front views, the phone could be considered as “ laid ” or disproportionate

The 6 IPS LCD display of 5 inches on the front of the phone is nicely sized and neat, which makes it ideal for enjoying the media Although you shouldn't expect the same vivid colors and higher contrast from the OLED display of the 7 Pro, the screen of 7 5G still gives you a great viewing experience.

He wins over the other two members of the series 7 when it comes to its ultra-smooth high refresh rate of 120 Hz, associated with a high tactile response rate of 180 Equally respectable Hz, which makes it ideal for games.

If you have trouble with the screen size of the 7 5G, there is the option of a one-handed mode, which reduces the user interface in the phone settings; with a number of display customization options, including color temperature control and refresh rate control (allowing you to lock it to 60 Hz, 120 Hz or set it to automatic – the default adaptive setting)

The bottom edge of the phone houses its audio gubbins, with a standard 3 headphone socket 5 mm to the left of its USB-C port and a single speaker grille to the bottom right Speaker quality is surprisingly good, with a pleasant level of clarity and reach, which means that watching video content without headphones is quite viable

There is also Dolby Atmos support, which offers a range of audio profiles to switch between, focusing on videos respectively, games and music (there is also an automatic mode)

Realme UI – the personalized user experience of the company, in that case, running on android 10 – may technically only be in its first incarnation, but its foundations in Oppo's ColorOS make it a much more polished product than you might expect if you ‘ new to Realme as a brand

It deviates significantly from the state of play of Google on Android, but should still seem intuitive to those who have used a smartphone in recent years Whether it works for you or not is more a matter of personal preference, regarding the aesthetic and interaction decisions he employs

A multitude of additional experiences help give Realme UI its unique flavor The Smart Sidebar is a ubiquitous quick access menu for your favorite apps, as well as useful features such as screen recording, while Game Space is both a place to host all your downloaded games but also a way to optimize device performance and control notifications while playing

By entering, we were quite curious how MediaTek's SoC Dimensity 800U would handle – being a relatively unknown quantity – with Realme 7 5G and the Reno 4 Oppo's Z 5G being the first devices in Europe to take advantage of this particular silicon.

In the case of 7 5G, he is associated with 6 Go RAM and 128 GB of storage space, but maybe even more interesting, the 800U makes it one of the first phones to feature 5G 5G DSDS (double SIM, dual watch) This means that you can enjoy both VoNR (Voice over New Radio) High quality – the 5G equivalent of VoLTE – and 5G data connectivity on two compatible SIM cards and plans. Ideal for those who roam or want more choice in which 5G services they operate from which carriers

Regarding raw performance, the Dimensity 800U inside the Realme 7 5G turns out to be a formidable chip in the lower midrange space, going hand in hand with the Snapdragon 690 in the OnePlus Nord N10 5G, as well as supposedly more powerful phones like Google's Pixel 4a 5G, with its Snapdragon 765G – two more expensive handsets overtaken by this more affordable device

The 800U's apparent penchant for gaming performance at this price point – as discussed in the benchmarking results above – is also enhanced by its real-world gaming prowess, which allows solid gameplay to 60 ips with high graphics settings in games like Call of Duty Mobile, supported by this fast touch response rate of 180 Hz

Like the Realme 7 standard, you will find a large cell of 5000 mAh inside 7 5G and, as the basis 7, the 7 5G promises up to two days of use per charge

Although it may seem like an obvious expectation, even with such a large cell, the inclusion of a more powerful processor, higher refresh rate display and 5G should all contribute to higher power consumption. Instead of that – probably in part thanks to the severe power management of Realme UI and the smaller process 7 nm of Dimensionity 800U – the Realms 7 5G correspond, or in some cases, surpasses the power profile of the 4G model.

The phone offers an impressive nine hours of screen time, which corresponds well to these two days of use per charge cycle There is also the inclusion of the fast charge of 30 W under the brand “ Dart Charge ” by Realme

During our tests, the included charger switched this power supply from 5000 mAh empty charge at 62% in 30 minutes – 4% more than Realme 7 standard charged in the same time A full charge takes, on average, a ribbon over an hour, which is also very respectable

And, for some reason, you want to extend the life of a single charge of the Realme battery 7 5G, several methods are available. Realme UI offers both power saving mode and super power saving mode, you can control application activity on a case-by-case basis and you have the option to manually reduce the refresh rate, as previously mentioned

Considering the surprising number of differences that distinguish Realme 7 5G of standard 4G model, one area that remains unchanged is the camera configuration and, as such, it has the same strengths and weaknesses.

You will find a 48Mp Samsung S5KGM1ST main sensor on the back, accompanied by an ultra-wide 8Mp and a pair of 2Mp sensors – dedicated respectively to macro and depth (for portrait shooting) There is a perforated front panel which clock at 16Mp too

Generally, as long as you have a lot of light, you will capture decent photos with detail and color good enough to adorn Instagram, without fear of ridicule Realme's camera app makes it easy to add filters, HDR shooting switching (better on the left) and enables AI improvements (once again, best left on, if you like a little more oomph in your photos)

There's also a decent amount of color and contrast consistency when switching to the ultra-wide snapper.; generally less sure that you are moving to the more affordable end of the spectrum

Regarding selfies, you should find here that the photos are sharp and have good contrast, even if the color saturation takes a noticeable hit by comparison

The caveat when shooting on virtually all cameras in the 7 5G is how they manage the available light. Under bright shooting conditions, you will get the best results, but if your photo has a high contrast subject, it doesn't take much to reveal the limits of this phone's dynamic range; with the lightest parts blowing or the darker areas losing detail and turning to matte black

Le Realme 7 5G is available from 27 November and costs 279 £ UK, exclusively on Amazon

The most important, is that its opening price is actually 229 £ in reduction, as part of Realme's Black Friday offers (with this offer expiring on 30 November)

Beyond its opening discount, however, the Realms 7 5G costs 100 £ more than Realme 7 de base compatible 4G, costing the same as the Realme 7 Pro, who, among others, forgo 5G in favor of a better OLED screen 60 Hz and fast charge 65 W faster

If you didn't know, at the time of writing this article, the Realms 7 5G also won the title of “ Europe's cheapest 5G phone ” and does it while reducing its competitors, including more expensive devices like OnePlus' new Nord N10 5G and Google's Pixel 4a 5G

Although the camera is the weakest aspect of Realme 7 5G, no part of this phone is inherently bad, especially considering what is offered at this price.

As a brand, Realme was keen to make 5G accessible to as many consumers as possible and Realme 7 5G is the perfect embodiment of this effort. They could easily have found a modem combination / chip allowing 5G connectivity and leaving the rest of the hardware intact of the 4G model, while charging 100 £ Furthermore – as was Samsung's strategy with the Galaxy S20, for example.

Instead of that, the 7 5G brings superior performance, faster charging, greater longevity and a higher refresh rate display at the table to better justify the price jump over the 7 standard.

When choosing a new phone, choosing the cheapest option is rarely the right way to go, however, when it comes to choosing the cheapest 5G phone, thanks to Realme 7 5G, this may be the best option

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Alex has covered all the phones, tablets and portable things worth mentioning over the past eight years Look for it on Tech Advisor's YouTube channel

5G, Android, smartphone, user interface

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