Realme C1 Review; Entry-Level Redefined

Anjie lou delos Reyes

Realme is the latest and the youngest smartphone brand in the country, they are in fact a sub-brand or brand extension of OPPO, which basically means that the former is affiliated with the latter, but has its own products and branding. Speaking of products, they released several devices in other countries, however, only launched one model in the Philippines so far, the Realme C1, which is the focus of this review.

Realme C1 Review Philippines; Entry-Level Redefined
Realme C1 Review; Entry-Level Redefined

The Realme C1 is almost the same, if not identical, to the OPPO A3s, they share the same physical dimensions and hardware. The only difference is the resolution of the front-facing camera, which is 8MP for the A3, while only 5MP for the C1, however, we believed that this is more of software manipulation rather than actual sensor difference. Nevertheless, it is a very interesting handset, especially if its asking price is put into consideration, that is why Realme dubbed it as the "Real Entry Level King". So, without further ado, let's start taking a closer look.


Realme C1 Unboxing and Hands-on

The retail package of the Realme C1 contains the unit itself with pre-installed plastic film, free protective case, power adapter, USB cable, SIM ejector tool, and paper documents. The box does not include an earphone, something that's becoming a norm for entry-level devices from most, if not all, international mobile brands.

Realme C1 Review - Front

The front is mainly occupied by its 6.2-inch display with HD+ resolution, that is 1520 x 720 pixels, and has an aspect ratio of 19:9 with a notch up top. The notch holds the selfie shooter, earpiece grill, and hidden sensors. Similar to most OPPO entry-level and mid-range offerings, the LCD panel of the C1 is not completely leveled with the side frame, it is slightly positioned higher. At the top of the LCD panel is a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass 3, and for those still not confident of the said protection, there is another layer of removable plastic film on top of it.

Realme C1 Display Info
Display Info

In terms of display quality, it is able to give good viewing angles on all sides, with enough brightness and vibrancy to enjoy what you are watching or seeing on the screen. The sunlight legibility is okay, but most of the time, you need to flip the brightness switch into full strength. Aside from the default color temperature, there is also an option to change it to cooler or warmer tone. There is also a Night Shield that reduces blue light from the screen that reduces eye strain. However, there seems to be no option to hide the notch.

Realme C1 Review - Back

The back has an elegant glossy glass-like design, it is not slippery to hold, however the kind of finish it has, makes it more prone to fingerprints and smudges. Here, you can find the dual rear cameras encased in a metallic silver frame with LED flash on its right side, and realme logo written in small letters.

Realme C1 Review - Sides

Moving to the sides, the right holds the power button, the left has the volume keys and the triple card slot, the bottom is quite busy with the loudspeaker grill, microphone, MicroUSB port, and 3.5mm audio jack, while the top portion has nothing on it. By the way, the card tray can accommodate two Nano SIM cards and a MicroSD card for storage expansion.

It measures 156.2mm by 75.6mm by 8.2mm and weighs about 168 grams. For comparison purposes, it is quite thicker than the Cherry Mobile Flare S7 Plus, but 32 grams lighter.

The Realme C1 has no hardware fingerprint scanner, so, in terms of securing the phone, users are left with Pass Code and Face Unlock. Thankfully, the latter works pretty well, even in slightly dim places.


As a sub-brand of OPPO, it also shares the same software user interface, which is the ColorOS version 5.2 based on Android 8.1 Oreo. Dubbed as "Smart and Efficient", the ColorOS 5.2 offers a fresh interface with lots of useful features, such as Smart Bar for a more convenient multitasking, build-in video editing tools, Google Lens, and Google Assistant to name a few. To learn more about ColorOS, visit

Realme C1 Software

One thing to note about is that the software and pre-installed applications consumed about 8.95GB of the 16GB internal storage, giving the users only 7.05GB of available space upon boot up.


Underneath the Realme C1 is the already ageing, yet still very capable Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 chipset, which was designed and used by many mid-range mobile devices starting around the second half of 2017. Almost two years since it was released, the 14nm FinFET SD450 can still handle quite numerous graphics-intensive games like Asphalt 9, PUBG Mobile and NBA 2K2018 pretty much okay with minor dropped frames and stutter. However, we recommend closing other applications when playing such games for smoother performance, especially for the same unit that we have that only has 2GB of RAM. Oh, for those who are concerned about the gyroscope, we are glad to report that the C1 has it.

Realme C1 CPU-Z Info
CPU-Z Info

We also run our favorite benchmarking tools to know how it fare with other devices, and below are the results:

Antutu - 73,708
Geekbench - 779 (single core)
Geekbench - 3,669 (multi core)
Geekbench - 3,400 (RenderScript)
PC Mark - 5,008
3D Mark Sling Shot - 830
3D Mark Sling Shot Extreme - 482 (Vulkan)
3DMark Sling Shot Extreme - 447 (OpenGL ES 3.1)
3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited – 12,858
3DMark Ice Storm Extreme - 7,936

Realme C1 Benchmark Scores
Benchmark Scores

The scores are pretty much similar with the Vivo V7 Plus, which uses the same chipset, except for the Antutu since the version used for testing are different. In comparison with Vivo Y95 that uses entry-level, but newer Qualcomm Snapdragon 439, all the scores are lower, except for the PC Mark, probably because SD439 has slightly higher frequency, and the Y95 has more RAM at 4GB.

Realme C1 Sample Game - PUBG Mobile
PUBG Mobile

As for the day to day use, it is able to deliver satisfying performance when browsing social media channel and watching videos online, navigating the UI can also be considered smooth, and switching between multiple apps is fast enough. Slow down can still occur, such as when using Google Chrome with several tabs are open, so, we still recommend releasing background applications. Remember, the Realme C1 is an entry-level offering, so, do not push too hard like a flagship handset.


Realme C1 Dual Rear Cameras
Dual Rear Cameras

The Realme C1 is equipped with dual-rear cameras composed of a 13MP f/2.2 auto focus main shooter plus a secondary f/2.4 depth sensor. Meanwhile, the front-facing snapper has a 5M f/2.2 sensor. Both the front and back cameras offer beautification, however, only the front one has AI Beauty 2.0, which analyze the user's face and beautify it accordingly with the help of powerful algorithm.

Realme C1 Camera Interface
Camera Interface

There are also stickers that are quite fun to toy with, along with other standard shooting modes like Panorama, and Portrait to name a few. However, there are two things that we are missing, there is no Pro/Manual Mode and Night Mode, but then again, I believed that's too much to ask already.

Dual-Rear Camera Samples:

Realme C1 Main Camera Sample - Day
Realme C1 Main Camera Sample - Afternoon
Realme C1 Main Camera Sample - Night
Realme C1 Main Camera Sample - Indoor
Realme C1 Main Camera Sample - Closeup

Front Camera Samples:

Realme C1 Front Camera Sample - Selfie
Realme C1 Front Camera Sample - Selfie with Depth Effect
Selfie with Depth Effect
Realme C1 Front Camera Sample - Selfie at Night
Selfie at Night

Both cameras are able to produce relatively good quality photos for an entry level device, especially when there is good lighting. However, for shots taken at night or less ideal lighting situations, the output quality is a hit or miss, sometimes exposure is good, most of the time over or under, moreover, noise is usually present. That's why we recommend taking multiple shots, and select the best ones.


The Realme C1 offers multiple band LTE frequencies, including band 28 or commonly known as 700MHz, which helps it to have a good LTE signal reception even inside homes or offices. The WiFi standard is 802.11 b/g/n and has only 1 channel, the Bluetooth version is 4.2, and the USB port is still micro, thankfully it supports on-the-go functionality. By the way, it still has an FM radio receiver, which you can enjoy by simply inserting an earphone on its 3.5mm jack.

Realme C1 GPS Test Result
GPS Test Result

As for the GPS, it is able to get a quick 3D signal in just a matter of few seconds with an accuracy of about 4 meters. The satellites in view are 46, and around 25 of them are in used. In real life situation, we have not encountered erratic signal change/lost when we use the phone for Waze and Google Maps.


One of the best selling point of the Realme C1 is its huge 4230mAh battery. Probably, you will say that you have seen bigger capacities, yes, that's true, however, you will seldom find it from an entry-level device from an international smartphone brand. But, even so, it is still able to beat devices with a 5000mAh battery like the ASUS ZenFone Max Pro M1 in the PC Mark test. The C1 got an unbelievable 20 hours and 34 minutes, which is 8 hours more than the M1's 12 hours and 32 minutes. Sounds amazing, right? Yes, indeed! In fact, it is the highest score we got ever since we started reviewing gadgets.

Realme C1 PC Mark Battery Test Result
PC Mark Battery Test Result

In terms of recharging the fuel cells, it takes about 2.5 hours for it to fully regenerate from 0 to 100%, that is using a 10W charger. Yes, it supports fast charging, but, sadly the power adapter included in the package is only 5W. And, by using the supplied charger, it takes about 5.5 hours for it to fully charge from 0 to 100.


The Realme C1 is indeed the best of its kind in its category, particularly in the sub-6K pesos segment. It has a nice design, good display, above average computing performance, and a ridiculously great battery life, features that are quite hard to find in the entry-level market.

Realme C1 Review Philippines
Realme C1

Of course, it is not perfect, the camera could have been better, the supplied charger could have been a fast charging one, and they should have thrown in even a cheap earphones. But, for us, the Realme C1 strong points outweighs these shortcomings, especially if you able to grab it at discounted price. That said, we still give it two thumbs up!

Realme C1 Specs (Philippines):

  • Dual Nano SIM, dual stand-by, supports LTE connectivity
  • 6.2-inch IPS HD+ (1520 x 720) capacitive touchscreen display, 18.5:9 aspect ratio
  • Dimensions: 156.2mm x 75.6mm x 8.2mm
  • Weight: 168 grams
  • Color OS 5.2 based on Android 8.1 Oreo
  • 1.8GHz octa core Cortex-A53 CPU, Adreno 506 GPU, Snapdragon 450 chipset
  • 2GB RAM
  • 16GB internal storage, expandable via MicroSD card up to 256GB, uses dedicated slot
  • 13MP f/2.2 + 2MP f/2.4 main cameras with AF and LED flash, 1080p video recording
  • 8MP f/2.2 front camera
  • Multimedia Player
  • FM Radio
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • Bluetooth v4.2
  • WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
  • MicroUSB 2.0 with OTG function
  • Battery: 4230mAh Li-Ion, non-removable, supports fast charging
  • Colors: Red, Dark Purple
  • Price: Php5,990 (SRP), Php5,490 (Flash Sale)

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