review of realme 10 Pro
realme launched the realme 10 Pro, the company’s latest mid-range smartphone in the number series, in India last week. This is a minor upgrade with one main change being the screen. Is this the best smartphone to buy in Rs. 20,000 price range? Let’s dive into the review to find out.
The contents of the box
- realme 10 Pro+ 8GB + 128GB version in Nebula Blue color
- 2-pin 33W SuperVOOC fast charger
- USB Type C cable
- SIM ejector tool
- Protective case
- User manual and warranty information
Display, hardware and design
The main highlight of the phone is the screen. This has a 6.7-inch (1080 x 2400 pixels) Full HD+ LCD display with 120Hz refresh rate, 240Hz touch sampling rate and 391 PPI pixel density. The screen is bright as it has up to 680 nits peak brightness. It provides good color output as it has a 100% DCI-P3 color gamut, and legibility in sunlight is also good.
You can choose between vivid and natural screen color modes. The phone has a software-based dimming technology. The phone also has HDR 10 support, but it doesn’t work for YouTube or Netflix. There is video color enhancement option.
It as variable refresh rate, so the screen can switch between 30Hz / 48Hz / 50Hz / 60Hz / 90Hz / 120Hz depending on the content, so it is quite smooth to use.
The phone has 1mm ultra narrow bezels and 1.15mm top bezel, thanks to the new RAZR technology and InSeal technology. The phone has a small hole on the left that houses a 16 megapixel camera. Above the screen, there is an earpiece on the upper edge that acts as a secondary speaker.
As for the placement of buttons and ports, the power button with an inbuilt fingerprint scanner is present on the right side along with the volume rockers. The hybrid dual SIM slot is present on the left. The 3.5mm audio jack, primary microphone, USB Type-C port and speaker grill are present on the bottom. The secondary microphone is on the top.
The phone has a polycarbonate frame and back that can feel cheap, but the matte finish models look good and don’t attract fingerprints. The phone is 8.1 mm thick and weighs 190 grams.
The design is inspired by the concept of hyperspace tunnels. The refracted light in the design looks as if the light is being stretched to the limit at ultra-high speeds, creating a dynamic three-dimensional effect. The classic form of the twin-lens reflex camera is combined with modern digital images across time and space, bringing a new street photography trend in image expression, the company said. The phone does not have an IP classification.
- 108 MP rear camera with 1/1.67″ Samsung HM6 sensor, f/1.75 aperture
- 2 MP portrait camera with Geco Micro GC02M1 sensor, f/2.4 aperture
- 16 MP front-facing camera with Samsung S5K3P9 sensor, f/2.45 aperture
The camera interface in realme UI 4.0 is also the same as 3.0. It has QuickShot Acceleration Engine, One Take which uses AI algorithm where multiple images with different perspectives are generated in one shot and new group portrait. There is Pro mode, Panorama, Flim, Slo-mo, Time-Lapse, Dual-View video, text scanner, star mode and tilt-shift.
There is dynamic bokeh and Bokeh Flare portrait option for photos. The rear camera has 12 MP output after pixel binning and the front camera images are 16 MP in size.
Daylight photos came out well, thanks to the 108 MP sensor, and the dynamic range is better with auto HDR. It’s AI mode recognizes different photo scenes and automatically adjusts camera settings to enhance colors. 2X is good, but once you zoom after that the quality deteriorates as it is digital zoom. The portrait mode is decent and the 2MP macro camera is useless, so it is recommended to use 2X zoom with a regular camera.
Low light photos are also good. Night mode is useful, but takes a few seconds to process. There is also a pro mode in night mode for manual tuning. The front camera is decent in daylight, but it could be better. Bokeh shots were decent.
Check out the camera samples
The main limitation of the Snapdragon 695 is that it can only record videos up to 1080p resolution at 30 fps, and does not support 4K video recording even though it has a 108MP camera. It also has 720p slow motion recording. It uses EIS for videos.
Software, user interface and apps
This is one of the first realme phones to run Android 13 based realme UI 4.0 out of the box. It has Android security update for November 2022. It should get 2 Android updates. relame UI 4.0 adds intuitive iconography, new card style UI layout, 79 new Omoji faces, Smart AOD, Large Folders, dynamic home screen widgets, Auto Pixelate, Private Safe, and Quantum Animation Engine 4.0 improves the overall flow.
Apart from the usual set of realme apps and Google apps, it comes with Amazon Shopping, Snapchat, ShareChat, Dailyhunt, Josh, PhonePe, Moj, Public, Spotify, LinkedIN, Moj Lite+ and Paytm. These apps can be uninstalled but will return when the phone is reset. There are also Hot Apps and Hot Games. The company said it is taking steps to remove inappropriate app recommendations.
Out of 8 GB of LPDD4X RAM, you get 7.4 GB of usable RAM, and about 4 GB of RAM is free when standard apps are running in the background. It also has DRE or dynamic RAM expansion feature, which uses the built-in storage as RAM. This has up to 8GB of additional RAM expansion. Out of 128 GB, you get about 105 GB of free storage. The phone uses UFS 2.2 storage and we got sequential read speeds of about 517.4MB/s which is almost half of what we got in the 10 Pro+.
Fingerprint sensor and face lock
The phone has a fingerprint sensor on the driving side, embedded in the power button. It unlocks your phone instantly just by holding your finger on the power button so you don’t have to press it. You can add up to 5 fingerprints. The phone also has a face lock, but it is not as secure as a fingerprint.
Music and multimedia
YouTube Music is the default music player. It doesn’t have Dolby Atmos, but has realme sound technology with customizable Smart, Movie, Game and Music modes. It does not support FM radio. The sound through the stereo speakers is good without distortion even at full volume. The company said it is able to increase the volume to 200% through software. Sound through earphones is also good.
This one has Widevine L1, so you can play HD content on Netflix and other streaming apps. It does not support HDR content on YouTube or Netflix.
Dual SIM and connectivity
Realme 10 Pro supports n1/n5/n8/n28A/n41/n78 SA and n41/n77/n78 NSA network bands in India. You can also choose between NSA mode, NSA + SA mode or let it choose automatically. It has 4G Wi-Fi and VoLTE, with support for Carrier Aggregation on 4G. Other connectivity options include Wi-Fi 6 802.11 ax (2.4GHz + 5GHz), VoWiFi / Wi-Fi calling support, Bluetooth 5.2, GPS / GLONASS / Beidou. It has OTG support, does not have NFC support. Furthermore, the call quality is good, and we encountered no ring drops and the earpiece volume was high.
Realme 10 Pro’s body SAR is 0.465 W/Kg and head SAR is 1.165/Kg, which is well below the limit of 1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) in India.
Performance and benchmarks
The phone is powered by Snapragon 695 6nm SoC, same as realme 9 Pro. It has 2.2 x A78 CPUs clocked at up to 2.2 GHz, 6 x A55 CPUs clocked at up to 1.8 GHz. It has Adreno 618 GPU which promises up to 30% GPU performance increase compared to its predecessor.
The phone has up to 8 GB of LPDDR4X RAM. We encountered no problems or frame drops in the graphics-intensive games. The company did not mention if it has any cooling. It reached up to 41°C indoors with Wi-Fi, with about half an hour of intensive gaming.
That said, check out some synthetic benchmark scores below.
As for battery life, the phone packs a 5000mAh (typical) built-in battery with 33W SuperVOOC fast charging, same as its predecessor. It lasts a whole day with Wi-Fi, but with 4G or 5G and dual SIM cards. I got over 6 and a half hours of screen on time with over a day of use on Wi-Fi and at 120Hz. As the phone supports 33W SuperVOOC Charge, it can charge up to 50% in 30 minutes and up to 100% in over an hour with the included charger.
At a starting price of Rs. 18,999, the realme 10 Pro is a decent upgrade to the 9 Pro as there aren’t many changes except for the display. It runs Android 13 out of the box, but the ultra-wide camera has been removed. The company could have reduced the bloatware that gets installed automatically.
Prices and availability
The Realme 10 Pro is priced at Rs. 18,999 for the 6GB + 128GB and the 8GB + 128GB model is priced at Rs. 19,999. It is available from realme.com, Flipkart and offline stores starting today December 16.
OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite is a good competition as it offers similar specifications. The Moto G71 5G comes with an AMOLED display and also has an ultra-wide camera.
- 120Hz screen with elegant frames
- Smooth performance
- Good camera
- Android 13 out of the box
- No ultra wide camera