Realme with its new X7 wants to target the mid-range 5G smartphone market, which doesn’t have many contenders as of now. The device will be competing with the Xiaomi Mi 10i, the OnePlus Nord and the Vivo V20 Pro to name a few. Now if you see the competition, the Realme X7 does miss out on a few areas, but manages to cover up in other areas. As of now, 5G networks are not available in India, however, with these smartphones, you will be able to future proof yourself for when 5G networks are rolled out in the country later this year.
Before I start off with my review, I must mention that 5G is not the only key feature of the Realme X7. It comes with other good features like a Super AMOLED display, a MediaTek Dimensity 800U processor, support for 50W fast charging and more. All of this on paper does make the device look pretty impressive, but is it able to hold its own during our intensive tests? Find out below.
Realme X7 Price in India: Rs 19,999 (6GB RAM + 128GB storage) | Rs 21,999 (8GB RAM + 128GB storage)
Realme X7 specifications: 6.4-inch full HD+ Super AMOLED display | MediaTek Dimensity 800 processor | 6GB/8GB RAM | 128GB internal storage | 4,310mAh battery | 16MP front camera | 64MP+8MP+2MP rear cameras | Realme UI based on Android 10.
Realme X7 Review: Design and build
Starting off with the design, the Realme X7 looks a lot similar to other phones in the price bracket, with an all-screen display, a hole-punch camera on the front, and a rectangular camera module on the back. Where it is able to differ is with the huge Dare To Leap branding on the back.
The phone comes in two colour options: Space Silver and Nebula. We had the Nebula variant for review, and honestly, from the day I have had the device, I didn’t like the colour even a bit, I personally feel that the Space Silver has a much sleeker and better look. Note, this is a personal preference and you might end up liking the Nebula a lot.
Realme X7 is quite thin and light, easy to grip and use with one-hand. However, it is quite slippery, due to which I dropped it on a thin carpeted area and found out that the device did not sustain any damage. It features a tall and flat form factor, which makes it quite a delight to hold and watch videos on.
To keep the smartphone light and under a certain price segment, the company has used a polycarbonate body. However, considering that the competition comes with glass and metallic build, this is sort of a letdown for me.
On the back, there is a significant camera bump, that will not let your phone lay flat, but it has sort of become a go-to in most smartphones, so I would not complain about it.
Realme X7 Review: Display
The massive 6.4-inch AMOLED display might become cumbersome for many to use, but I found it to be quite nice, blame my big hands for that. I personally do not like the concept of a hole-punch camera, as it comes in between while consuming content.
I like how the display’s aspect ratios have been handled, while at the same time being happy with the brightness levels of the device. The display is able to adjust to the light around you well and I had no problems viewing it in bright outdoors or in the dark. Moreover, due to it being an AMOLED panel, if you use the dark theme along with dark wallpapers, you will end up saving a lot of battery as it would turn off the display pixels whenever it would have a black overlay.
Overall, I found the display of the Realme X7 to be pleasing. One gripe I have about the display is that it is stuck on a 60Hz refresh rate, even when it has a touch sampling rate of 180Hz. This means that there will be reduced input latency and an increased response time for the touch overlay but the display will not be able to show all of the graphics as fast as the overlay, resulting in a bit of choppiness while playing FPS games.
Realme X7 Review: Performance
Performance-wise the Realme X7 manages to hold at its own at all times. Day-to-day performance is not an issue on this smartphone, with it easily being able to handle daily tasks like receiving calls, browsing social media, listening to songs, watching videos and more.
During my base testing, I opened around 40 tabs in Chrome and started switching between them. During which I was unable to detect any noticeable lags or stutters. Surprisingly none of the tabs was auto killed, which is a show of the processing power the device has to offer to its users. After that, I moved to my multi-app test, during which, I open up various different apps and keep on switching between them. During this test, the results were similar to the multi-tab test.
Taking it to the next step, I started playing all the games I usually do on a mobile during its review, including Call of Duty: Mobile, Among Us, Asphalt 9: Legends and more. The device had no issues in allowing me to play these in high graphic settings, wherever possible, as it continued to perform smoothly.
Initially, there was very less amount of heating while playing the games. However, after around two to three hours of gameplay, I could feel a minor drop in the frame rates and the phone was getting warm.
Overall, the MediaTek Dimensity 800U powered Realme X7 managed to surprise me with its performance. And considering it brings 5G to the table, that is just an additional point in making me recommend this smartphone to you.
Realme X7 Review: Software
Realme X7 runs Google’s Android operating system with the company’s own Realme UI skin on top. Overall, Realme UI from the top mimics stock Android very well, but there are a few customisations like App Lock, Private Space and more. Navigating the UI is pretty simple and intuitive. If you are a first time user, there is not a high learning curve to get hold of the UI, which is pretty straight forward and simple to use. There are a few pre-installed apps that come along with the smartphone like Amazon, Facebook, SoLoop and more. The good thing is that all of these third party apps can be uninstalled without jumping through a lot of hoops.
Realme X7 Review: Fingerprint and face unlock
For security, the device features an in-display fingerprint sensor along with face unlock. I really liked the performance of the in-display fingerprint sensor on the Realme X7 as it is quite fast and smooth. The device also comes with Face Unlock feature, which I found to be on par with its competitors.
Realme X7 Review: Cameras
The last Realme smartphone camera that I remember liking a lot was of the Realme 2 Pro, which is why I was excited for this review. However, all of the excitement ended up turning into disappointment when I started using the camera.
The camera seems to be perfectly fine while using it in ample light, taking good shots of objects like flowers and static subjects. Even the edge detection seems on point with the individual hair on a human subject detected properly. The colours come out quite natural and the photo is pretty balanced. The photos carry a good amount of details especially in the 64-megapixel shooter mode, and once you activate the HDR mode, it simply takes the photos to the next level.
Another thing I liked about the camera is that the AI beauty filter is set to 0 when you start. Ofcourse you can set the filter to your liking if needed, but the company does not force you to use this feature like some others. However, on the front camera, the filter is set at 30 percent, and can be driven down to 0, manually if you want.
However, not everything about the Realme X7’s camera is bright, there are a few pitfalls that I think Realme can fix with future OTA updates, as it has managed with a few previous smartphones. The first major issue being that the phone sets its camera brightness according to the colour of the focus subject’s surface rather than the surrounding light. This made a lot of my photos come out over saturated as I was shooting darker shades. For example, if you were to tap and focus on a black coloured object, the camera would end up oversaturating the image, with you left trying to tone it down by controlling the brightness manually with the focus slider.
When zoomed in on a subject, the images come out as if they have an oil paint layer on them. I personally feel that these images are decent but I would not end up using them on my social media profiles until and unless I was wanting to give the images an old timey feel.
The camera does not perform well in low lighting conditions as I would have preferred it to, considering the price. The images come out with a lot of grain and a bit of haze. This can be dialed down a bit with the Night mode feature, however, not completely. Remember, while using the Night mode feature you need to have steady hands for a longer duration than what you would have to while clicking normal photos.
Coming to the front camera, it is not as impressive as some other phones in the price bracket like the Vivo V20 Pro, the Moto G 5G, and the OnePlus Nord and it just gets the work done. The images clicked in good lighting conditions come out just okay, whereas, low light images not so much. Moreover, the front camera even after setting the Beauty filter to 0, seems to be lightening the skin tone and smoothing out the skin, which is not something everybody will like.
Realme X7 Review: Battery
Before I start talking about the battery performance, I would like to state that the device supports 50W fast charging. But along with the device, the company provides us with a 65W SuperDart charger. The reasoning provided behind this is that a user might have 65W compatible devices at their homes and a user tends to share their charger with family due to which this will come handy. I appreciate Realme on taking this initiative, when most brands are busy removing the chargers from their retail boxes.
The phone managed to last me throughout the day with incoming calls, me constantly browsing social media platforms, watching YouTube and Netflix, with the device being left with around 10 percent of battery. Even when I forgot to charge the phone at home, it was not a mess at the office as the device was easily able to charge up within an hour with the in-box SuperDart charger.
For the nitty-gritty, it was able to charge up to 35 percent within 15 minutes, to 70 percent within 35 minutes, and to 100 percent within an hour. Initially, the charging was fast, but at later stages, it was a bit slow, thanks to trickle charging.
Realme X7 Review: Should you buy?
Well, this is a very complicated question for me to answer, as the phone does have a lot of pros, but also has its fair share of pitfalls. If you were looking for a 5G smartphone that has good performance to future proof your investment, and are ready to put up with an average camera and a polycarbonate body, then this is a smartphone that you should keep in mind while making the purchase decision. However, if the camera and a premium build are what you prefer, then I recommend that you look at other options, which fit your tastes.