Connect with us

Product of the Day

Realme arrives in SA with solid handset

The Realme C55 is a solid mid-range smartphone, although its price seems too high for its specifications, writes JASON BANNIER.

What is it?

Realme, claimed to be the world’s fastest-growing smartphone brand, arrived in South Africa in May with a promise to “revolutionise” the high-spec, low-cost market (see It has now launched the C55, a reasonably-priced phone for its target market.

The Realme C55 boasts a large, aesthetically pleasing design with a 6.72-inch screen, though the IPS LCD flat display falls slightly short in delivering vibrant colours. However, it compensates with smooth animations on its 90Hz display. The brightness, peaking at 680 nits, is not exceptional, but the large screen is great for watching videos, or using productivity applications.

The stylish design of the back is accentuated by a dual 64MP camera, which adds a layer of elegance, and looks professional. The rear camera and 8MP front camera use AI technology to deliver above-average performance. The rear camera supports up to 1080p@60fps, while the front camera supports up to 1080p@30fps.

The device runs on the Mediatek Helio G88 chipset, with 8GB RAM, which nowadays is the bare minimum for a decent smartphone. Though generally responsive, it sometimes exhibits slight delays, especially with more demanding apps like mobile games.

The 5000mAh battery offers sufficient life for a full day’s usage, but heavy users who frequently run demanding apps might find themselves running out when nearing the end of the day, especially if one sets the display to 90hz instead of the auto mode, which regulates frame rate and reduces battery consumption. The 33W charger supports fast charging, and replenishes the device’s battery from empty to full in about an hour.

The device can have an internal memory of up to 256GB. It has a Micro SD slot, which is a great feature for those needing more storage. It accommodates two nano SIM cards.

A fingerprint scanner integrated into the side lock button lacks seamlessness when it comes to unlocking the handset.

For added protection,a plastic phone cover is included in the box and the device comes with a thin pre-applied protective film on its screen.

Audio quality does the job, although it is not particularly impressive. It provides both a 3,5mm jack input and Bluetooth connectivity for those wanting a better audio experience.

The C55 lacks 5G connectivity, which sets it apart from devices like the Xiaomi Redmi Note 12, which was released a few months earlier at a similar price. The Note 12 has a slightly smaller display, but it boasts superior features such as AMOLED technology, 120Hz refresh rate, peak brightness of 1200 nits, and Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection. The Note 12’s better display is powered by a Qualcomm SM4375 Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 (6 nm) processor, which is superior to the C55’s Mediatek Helio G88 (12nm) in performance and efficiency.

Once one compares the C55 to another handset in its price range, it suddenly seems overpriced.

What does it cost?

The Realme C55 is available at a recommended retail price of R5,999.

Why does it matter?

The Realme C55 is an ordinary device that finds itself at the bottom of the mid-range in specs, but with a medium-level price. Its standout features are good battery size, and above-average cameras. It is a reliable device with regular features, yet it is more expensive than equivalent devices that have an emphasis on features like display or performance.

What are the biggest negatives?

  • It has a hefty rectangular design.
  • The colour display is somewhat dull.
  • Performance is average for its pricing.

What are the biggest positives?

  • The large screen is satisfying for accommodating both visual material and productivity apps.
  •  It has good battery 
  • A Micro SD slot allows for extra storage
  • The cameras are above-average for its range.

* Jason Bannier is a data analyst at World Wide Worx and a writer for Gadget.

Subscribe to our free newsletter
To Top