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Low-cost However Not That Cheerful



Chinese language cellphone maker Realme has not too long ago introduced two new price range Android telephones, the Realme C35 and Realme C31, and it’s the Realme C31 that’s the cheaper of the 2. 

Going for a mere £129, the Realme C31 feels like a steal – that’s roughly one third of the value of an entry-level iPhone SE. This price ticket will probably be music to the ears of those that ‘simply desire a cellphone to do the fundamentals’, or anybody who desires a burner cellphone for festivals and holidays.

It’s definitely a really enticing value, however what do you get precisely? An enormous 4890mAh battery which Realme says provides you with 45 days’ value of standby energy and a multi-lens digicam unit which guarantees detailed wides and close-ups.

Design-wise, the Realme C31 is slim and compact, so regardless of it coming with a long-lasting battery, it ought to slip comfortably into pockets and baggage.

Design & Construct

Light-weight plastic with a premium-looking metallic end
Very slim and easily-pocketable
Fingerprint scanner constructed into the facility key

Finances telephones can very often be cumbersome and ugly, however the Realme C31 is none of these items. The entrance options easy black plastic whereas the edges and rear function colored plastic with a lenticular-style end, both silver or darkish inexperienced. 

Measuring 8.4mm deep and weighing 197g, it’s a slender cellphone that’s straightforward to carry and function in a single hand, though the sleek sides imply that it has the tendency to slide out of your grasp for those who’re not cautious. 

As with the Xiaomi Poco M4 Professional 5G, the Realme C31’s fingerprint scanner is constructed into the facility button which is about on the right-hand fringe of the cellphone.

Whether or not you grip the cellphone along with your left or your proper hand, the facility button is positioned at a peak that’ll see it meet both your left index and center fingers or your proper thumb, respectively, which implies selecting the Realme C31 up and unlocking it in a single gesture is feasible – it’s easy, easy, elegant, and works very well. 

On the left-hand edge, there’s a SIM and microSD card tray, and two quantity keys. There are not any ports, connections, or controls on the highest aspect of the Realme C31, however on the base there’s a 3.5mm headphone jack and a micro USB port for charging and information connectivity.

Whereas it’s potential to see price range telephones with micro USB ports lately, many now sport the newer reversible Sort-C USB port. 

Display screen & Audio system

6.5in LCD
720p
Punchy brightness and distinction
Mono speaker 

The 6.5in show is bordered by a skinny bezel that’s taller on the prime (the place the entrance digicam unit is housed in a teardrop-shaped recess) and the underside. At a look, nothing offers away the truth that the Realme C31 is a price range cellphone.

The Realme C31’s show decision of 1600 x 720 is fairly low by at this time’s requirements however matches equally low-cost telephones just like the Nokia G21.

Regardless of this, the LCD show of the Realme C31 isn’t all horrible. Brightness is ample in most conditions indoors and outdoor, and there’s no horrible, cheesy, overly shiny end right here, that means you’ll be capable to learn messages on all however the sunniest of days. 

Internet pages and menus usually look sharp, and at a look distinction seems ample however discolouration is clear once you tilt the cellphone even barely.

That mentioned, you may nearly get away with watching content material with another person, though YouTube and Netflix content material seems to be dangerous. There’s no getting away from the truth that a 720p decision is previous hat in 2022. On the plus aspect, the show is responsive and usually talking, makes the cellphone straightforward to make use of. 

There’s a single exterior speaker which, because it’s positioned on the again of the cellphone, signifies that a lot of the audio will likely be muffled and distorted. You’ll in all probability need to connect with a Bluetooth speaker or use headphones anyway, as even when the Realme C31 is raised up, music nonetheless sounds weak and tinny. 

Specs & Efficiency

Unisoc T612 octa-core 1.82GHz CPU
ARM Mali-G57
As much as 4GB RAM
As much as 64GB storage

Because the Realme C31 prices below £150, it shouldn’t come as a shock to be taught that it’s not a excessive performer, however, it’s able to doing the fundamentals. If what you primarily want from a cellphone is for it to browse the online, examine social media, ship messages on WhatsApp and stream music, then it should suffice. 

With regards to looking and streaming media, you need to notice that the Realme C31 is a single-band Wi-Fi system. This implies you possibly can solely entry the older, slower, and extra congested 2.4GHz radio frequency – the high-speed lanes on the 5GHz and newer 6GHz motorways are simply not accessible to you. 

Being relegated to 2.4GHz signifies that you received’t see the complete profit of recent networking tools at residence or within the workplace. Utilizing the WiFi Pace Check Professional app, I recorded speeds within the area of 107-112Mbps when stood one metre away from a Netgear Orbi RBK750 Wi-Fi 6 router.

That’s gradual going – I’ll usually see Wi-Fi speeds upwards of 500Mbps on most telephones, when linked to the identical router on the 5GHz band. 

The Realme C31 is a 4G cellphone, and whereas this implies you possibly can’t faucet into the quickest speeds round, 5G protection will not be common, so if it’s nonetheless not accessible to you, this may not be the top of the world. It is also not anticipated at this value simply but.

It’s actually not a lot cop at gaming, it must be mentioned, as these scores above counsel. Polytopia, a low-polygon sport that’s not very resource-intensive, is completely playable. Nevertheless, Civilization Revolution 2 is difficult going – there’s noticeable chug even on the early levels, earlier than a great deal of sprites begin populating the display. I didn’t even hassle making an attempt to play Civ 6.

Idle clickers and puzzle video games will play effectively sufficient right here, and evidently, the Realme C31 can undoubtedly deal with the each day Wordle problem, however not a lot above that.

Cameras

13Mp principal sensor with color, black and white, and macro lenses
16Mp entrance sensor
Aperture, macro, evening modes
Usually produces shaky and blurry stills and video

Let’s not beat across the bush, the cameras of the Realme C31 should not superb. They’re solely actually able to producing acceptable leads to well-lit areas and if helps for those who’ve received a really regular hand.

A lot of the snaps I took with the primary digicam have been blurry and out of focus, except for a number of photographs of some flowers I used to be in a position to take with the assistance of a tripod, or the place I used to be in a position to relaxation the cellphone towards my thigh to regular my goal. 

On prime of all that, the digicam UI, whereas benefiting from a easy format, is gradual to reply, which makes biking by way of the menu choices, to not point out really taking photographs, a drag. 

There’s as much as 4x digital zoom, however as you possibly can see from the cat photographs within the gallery, issues get noisy in a short time at full magnification. Photographs taken at evening, with or with out the Evening Professional mode, look distorted and hues are exaggerated.

There’s a macro mode, however to be sincere, I couldn’t inform at a look the distinction between the close-up of the beer bottle taken on auto mode and the one taken with macro mode – if something, the colors look extra pure when taken with the default setting. 

Likewise, the selfie digicam produces stills which might be common at greatest, and that’s offered that you just’re taking them someplace with loads of pure mild. Something taken in a low-light atmosphere will look fairly dangerous. 

Video shot on the Realme C31 (as much as 1080p @30fps) is equally shaky, largely right down to the truth that the cameras usually have an issue shortly shifting focus between objects within the foreground and issues within the distance.

The low decision show doesn’t actually assist right here both, because it limits your capability to see how good (or dangerous) issues actually are.

Battery Life & Charging

4890mAh battery
Will give most individuals a day’s value of juice
Totally expenses from empty in below three hours

Realme guarantees respectable battery efficiency from the C31, and I can safely say that you’re going to get a fundamental working days’ value of energy out of it. In case you’re working at your desk for the usual eight hours, taking calls, streaming music on Spotify to a Bluetooth speaker or headphones, you’ll be capable to comfortably get by way of the day. I might end most working days with round 40-50% of energy left. 

Operating the PC Mark battery drain check gave us a powerful results of 10 hours and 19 minutes, which broadly tallied with my day-to-day expertise. 

It’s fairly gradual to cost again up, with the 10W charger taking round 2 hours 43 minutes to get the Realme C31 as much as 100% from empty. There is not any quick charging right here.

In case you’re used to charging telephones up in a single day, this received’t be of a lot concern, however for those who wanted to shortly cost your cellphone up out of your desk since you’d been caught between conferences all day, you would possibly discover this slow-going.

Fortunately, you possibly can choose up a Realme Energy Financial institution 2 for £25 from the Realme website – or any of those from the Greatest Energy Banks round-up – for those who’re not going to be close to a mains socket.

Software program & Apps

Android 11
Realme UI R Version person interface
A stripped-down interface with minimal bloat

The Realme C31 makes use of a customized person interface, UI R Version, on prime of Android 11. UI R Version seems to be and features lots like inventory Android and is subsequently clear, stripped down and simple to get snug with. 

There are a few uninstallable apps – Climate and Compass – which is barely annoying, however they don’t take up big quantities of house, and on condition that storage will be expanded by as much as 1TB by way of microSD, this isn’t a giant deal. 

Getting acquainted with the Realme C31 takes no time in any respect. Throughout set-up, you’ll be requested to pick out from a listing of search engines like google and yahoo (I picked DuckDuckGo), and it’ll assign this as your default search engine, and drop a search bar on the primary residence web page.

Dwelling web page settings will be customised very like they will on most Android telephones, by long-pressing on an empty space of a house display and deciding on a customisation possibility.

Worth & Availability

The Realme C31 is in the stores immediately from Realme now. Within the UK, the 4GB RAM and 64GB storage model is priced at £129. 

Silver and darkish inexperienced variations may also be picked up from Amazon UK for a similar value. 

UK pricing and launch date data for the cheaper 3GB RAM and 32GB storage variant was not accessible on the time of publication. Realme has confirmed that the C31 will not be launched within the US or Australia.

Take a look at our chart of one of the best price range telephones to see what different choices you’ve got.

Verdict

When contemplating shopping for an inexpensive cellphone {that a}) seems to be pretty much as good because the Realme C31 and b) delivers nice battery efficiency for such a low value, it’s good to ask your self ‘What’s lacking?’ and on this case, there are a number of omissions which could give patrons pause. 

These are; a low-resolution show, poor cameras, single-band Wi-Fi and 10W charging. All of those drawbacks may not be dealbreakers for you, and would possibly even be forgivable.

However, when you think about that the Realme C35 comes with a extra detailed show at Full HD, helps sooner dual-band Wi-Fi, and comes with a faster-charging 18W mains adapter, and – right here’s the actual kicker – it solely prices about £20 extra, abruptly the Realme C31 doesn’t appear to be a discount.

The cameras must be superior in addition to the Realme C35 comes with a 50Mp principal sensor.

In case you had the price range to splash out for one thing a bit of extra highly effective, then the Xiaomi Poco M4 Professional 5G, priced at round £239, is perhaps extra to your liking – it’s a 5G cellphone with a show that refreshes at as much as 90Hz, and you may absolutely recharge the battery from flat in simply over an hour. 

Whereas an OK performer in its personal proper, it’s arduous to justify going for the Realme C31 when there’s a greater cellphone accessible that’s solely an additional twenty quid.

Specs
Realme C31: Specs

Android 11 with Realme UI R Version
6.5in 1600×720 60Hz LCD show
Unisoc T612 processor (as much as 1.82GHz octa-core)
ARM Mali-G57 GPU
3GB/4GB RAM
32GB/64GB inner storage
microSD as much as 1TB
13Mp principal digicam, f/2.2
Black & white lens, f/2.8
Macro lens, f/2.Four aperture
16Mp selfie digicam, f/2.2
Fingerprint scanner (on energy key)
Bluetooth 5.0
GPS, Galileo, BeiDou
4G
Twin SIM
4,890mAh battery
10W charging
Mild Silver, Darkish Inexperienced
164.7 x 76.1 x 8.4mm
197g

About the author: SubSellKaro

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