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Realme C21 Review: Android on a Budget

When the Realme C12 was launched alongside the C15 final yr, the 2 smartphones regarded very comparable on paper and but commanded very completely different costs. In 2021, the producer has introduced down the costs of each smartphones’ successors. The Realme C25 (Review) has a quicker MediaTek Helio G70 processor, whereas the Realme C12’s successor, the C21, now begins at an entry-level value of Rs. 7,999.

It might appear to be a pretty value, however Realme has shuffled issues a bit. The Realme C21 provides a smaller 5,000mAh battery (as an alternative of 6,000mAh on the C12) and replaces the 2-megapixel monochrome digicam with a 2-megapixel macro one. Everyday efficiency has not modified, as a result of the Realme C21 sticks to the identical MediaTek Helio G35 processor because the C12. However, the Realme C21 nonetheless provides a good Android expertise for anybody on a decent price range, so long as you do not demand an excessive amount of from it.

Realme C21 value in India

The Realme C21 is priced in India at Rs. 7,999 for the bottom 3GB RAM + 32GB storage variant, and at Rs. 8,999 for the 4GB RAM + 64GB storage choice. Both variants can be found in Cross Blue and Cross Black finishes. There’s additionally the Realme C20, which is sort of equivalent besides that it’s accessible solely with 2GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, and has a single rear digicam. It is priced at Rs. 6,999.

Realme C21 design

The Realme C21 appears to be like fairly just like the C12 when it comes to general design, with all three cameras and the LED flash positioned neatly inside a square-shaped digicam module. The smartphone’s physique is made from plastic and includes a texture with positive grooves on the again, which provides a very good grip.

Thanks to this matte end, the again panel didn’t decide up fingerprints, and remained smudge-free with every day use. At 190g, the C21 doesn’t really feel as cumbersome because the Realme C25 (209g), and that is primarily all the way down to the smaller 5,000mAh battery.

The plastic physique’s texture with positive grooves provides good grip

 

A minor design element that has modified since Realme C12 is the location of the one speaker. It now sits on the again on the backside left nook, subsequent to the Realme brand. There is a tiny dimple subsequent to the grille that ought to forestall sound from getting blocked when the telephone is positioned on a flat floor.

Realme C21 specs and software program

Most of the specs, save for the battery and the cameras, have remained the identical as on the Realme C12. The C21 has a MediaTek Helio G35 processor, which is often utilized by a number of producers on this value phase. There’s 3GB of RAM and 32 GB of storage on the bottom variant, or 4GB of RAM and 64 GB of storage on the higher-end variant. Both allow you to add as much as 256GB of storage utilizing a microSD card within the devoted slot.

Unlike the Realme C25, which shipped working Realme UI 2.0, the C21 provides Realme UI 1.0, which relies on Android 10. It’s a bit previous, however the software program seems pretty clear except for a couple of Realme apps comparable to HeyFun (for fast informal video games), HeyTap Cloud (cloud storage), and Realme Link (to attach with the corporate’s IoT merchandise). These apps may be uninstalled if you do not want them.

Realme C21 front software ndtv RealmeC21 Realme

The Realme C21 doesn’t run the newest Realme UI 2.Zero software program, however nonetheless provides fundamental customisation choices

 

Despite the absence of Realme UI 2.0, fundamental customisation choices comparable to altering the system font, icon shapes and extra are nonetheless accessible. There is a good choice of static wallpapers and the flexibility to use and obtain new themes as effectively.

Realme C21 efficiency and battery life

With the identical processor and RAM choices as on the Realme C12, the software program shortcomings of the C12 have additionally made their approach to its successor.

I observed occasional lag on the 4GB RAM + 64GB variant that I reviewed. Switching between apps was clean more often than not however there have been situations when apps restarted after being opened from the Recents display. The keyboard at instances would take a couple of additional seconds to pop up, and apps took a couple of seconds to launch. Despite the hiccups, the expertise is not all that unhealthy for an informal consumer who simply desires to run a couple of easy apps.

Realme C21 display ndtv RealmeC21 Realme

The LCD panel on the Realme C21 can get vibrant sufficient to be seen in direct daylight

 

The 6.5-inch HD+ LCD panel appears sharp sufficient at a look, however it’s straightforward to identify jagged edges within the textual content and round icons when you maintain it up a bit nearer. Colours seem a bit too saturated, and the show showcases a cooler tone than what can be pure. The LCD display can get vibrant sufficient to be seen clearly in direct daylight, which is fairly good for a smartphone on this value phase. However, the brightness drops fairly a bit when viewing any content material off-centre. The show additionally picks up fingerprints fairly simply and these are fairly troublesome to wipe off.

In phrases of efficiency, the Realme C21 managed to run informal video games easily however struggled with Asphalt 9: Legends and Call of Duty: Mobile.

Asphalt 9: Legends was barely playable on the Default graphics setting, and showcased loads of lag and pauses whereas racing. What’s extra, the sport will not even allow you to change to Performance mode (for lowered graphics high quality) Call of Duty: Mobile was not playable because it lagged horribly even with the graphics high quality set to Low and framerate set to Medium.

Realme C21 rear speaker ndtv RealmeC21 Realme

The placement of the speaker on the again shouldn’t be a good suggestion

 

The placement of the speaker on the again shouldn’t be a good suggestion because it directs sound away from the consumer. When streaming films or enjoying video games, my index finger usually lined up the speaker, ensuing resulted in muffled sound and decreased loudness. What’s extra, the one speaker is sort of tinny, and sound tears at excessive quantity.

Since the Realme C21 is not constructed to run graphics-intensive 3D video games, I ended up utilizing it primarily for messaging, checking emails, streaming films, and taking images. With my informal utilization, the telephone’s 5,000mAh battery lasted me a very good two days. Our HD video loop take a look at lasted 24 hours and 21 minutes on a single cost, which is 7 hours in need of its predecessor (the Realme C12) however remains to be superb.

Unlike the Realme C25, the C21 doesn’t include an 18W charging adapter within the field. Instead, you get a 10W charger that expenses the 5,000mAh battery to 22 p.c in 30 minutes, and 44 p.c in an hour. The telephone reached 100 p.c in 2 hours and 19 minutes in my expertise. This remains to be faster than the Realme C25, which took three hours and seven minutes to succeed in 100 p.c, because of the decreased battery capability.

Realme C21 cameras

While the 13-megapixel major digicam with its f/2.2 aperture and the 2-megapixel depth sensor stay the identical as on the older Realme C12, the producer has switched the 2-megapixel monochrome digicam for a 2-megapixel macro digicam on the C21, which many individuals will discover extra helpful.. The selfie digicam additionally stays comparable with a 5-megapixel sensor however has an f/2.2 aperture in comparison with the f/2.Zero aperture on the earlier mannequin.

Realme C21 rear camera ndtv RealmeC21 Realme

Realme has switched the 2-megapixel monochrome digicam on the C12 for a 2-megapixel macro digicam on the C21

 

The digicam app’s interface is the standard Realme UI 1.Zero digicam with straightforward one-tap entry to filters and the Chroma Boost characteristic, which amplifies the colors of pictures. However, the interface shouldn’t be very responsive and there’s slight lag when switching between digicam modes. Even simply swiping from picture to portrait or to video mode requires a little bit of endurance.

Realme C21 daytime digicam pattern (faucet to see full measurement)

 

As for the images, the general picture high quality is beneath common. Photos shot in daylight got here out vibrant however fell quick on element with murky textures. Shooting topics in broad daylight led to blown-out highlights, each on the topic and within the background. The similar applies to the Portrait mode when utilizing each the entrance and rear cameras. The rear digicam, similar to the Realme C25, boosts color saturation when capturing a human topic in Auto mode. This doesn’t occur when capturing inanimate objects.

Realme C21 selfie digicam samples (prime: daytime portrait; backside: low-light portrait) (faucet to see full measurement)

 

As anticipated, submit sundown, images get murkier with element taking an enormous hit. Most low-light images ended up trying like work, and the devoted Night mode didn’t assist enhance issues both, in my expertise. Photos shot within the Night mode got here out blurry, with oversaturated colors. They additionally lacked depth and regarded flat. Auto-focus speeds take a success at evening too, and you will have a little bit of endurance, even when you faucet to focus when capturing darker scenes. Selfies shot in low mild had been filled with noise and lacked any sense of depth.

Realme C25 macro digicam pattern (faucet to see full measurement)

 

The 2-megapixel macro digicam captured photographs that regarded a bit too dramatic with extreme distinction and odd-looking colors. Shots taken with the primary digicam regarded lots higher, with good sharpness and colors that had been nearer to the actual factor.

Video recorded in daylight is passable however not usable if shot in low mild. Videos shot at 1080p 30fps showcased blown-out highlights in brighter areas of the body. There’s no kind of stabilisation, which makes movies shot when strolling actually shaky.

Verdict

Given its pricing, the Realme C21 is supposed to be a primary smartphone for somebody who has upgraded from a characteristic telephone, or for somebody who merely desires to run a couple of on a regular basis apps and place calls. It is a fundamental price range smartphone that performs with a couple of hiccups, however is sweet sufficient for the informal consumer who doesn’t count on a lot. Its digicam efficiency is sort of weak and the identical may be stated about gaming, which leaves battery life as its greatest promoting level.

With that stated, many lately launched price range smartphones provide comparable {hardware}, such because the Poco C3 (Review). Priced at Rs. 7,499 it appears a bit superior in relation to digicam high quality, however falls quick when it comes to software program efficiency. Those on the lookout for a near-stock Android smartphone on this value vary may also have a look at the Moto E7 Power which is priced beginning at Rs. 7,499 (3GB + 32GB). It provides barely weaker efficiency and has two rear cameras, however provides an IP52 ranking to the combination.


It’s an all tv spectacular this week on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast, as we focus on 8K, display sizes, QLED and mini-LED panels — and provide some shopping for recommendation. Orbital is out there on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.

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