Reviews

Realme 2 Pro Review: Redefining Budget Flagship Category

While flagships start to further climb in prices, consumers are looking to experience new smartphones that provide the best value and hardware. Realme 2 Pro is quite a unique offering in this regard. Created by a brand founded in 2018, the 2 Pro comes with flagship hardware such as a dew-drop notch, high capacity storage, RAM and also dual cameras. The enticing part is the price, it is available for under $400. If you are looking to purchase the Realme 2 Pro, here is our complete review after thoroughly testing it and putting it through its paces.

The target demographic for the Realme brand is youth. So much so, the brand exclaims it’s Realme 2 Pro as the youth flagship. The smartphone comes with a dewdrop notch display, 128GB of storage, 8GB of RAM and also Snapdragon 660 processor. This hardware combination has been seldomly found before but we think it’s destined for success. Other key features include dual cameras and ColorOS — Android skin.

Here is a detailed look at all the hardware specifications of Realme 2 Pro.

  • Network: (GSM / FDD / TDD / WCDMA)
  • Display: 6.3 inch 19.5:9 IPS LCD FHD + (2340 x 1080)
  • Processor: Snapdragon 660
  • OS: Android 8.1 (Oreo), ColorOS 5.2
  • Camera Rear:16 MP with f/1.7 and 2 MP with f/2.4
  • Camera Front: 16MP F2.0
  • Connectivity: microUSB, Bluetooth 5.1 and 3.5mm Headphone Jack
  • Sensors: M-sensor, Gravity Sensor, Gyro-meter, Fingerprint Sensor, Light and Proximity Sensor, OTG
  • Memory: 4GB + 64GB / 6GB + 64GB / 8GB + 128GB
  • Dimension: 156.7m x 74.0mm x 8.5mm, 174g
  • Battery: 3,500mAh

Realme 2 Pro: Design and Hardware

Realme 2 Pro starts with a standard bar shape. The front has a beautiful minimal bezel, large 6.3 inch IPS display with dewdrop notch. This certain notch is different from the standard rectangular one we have seen on so many smartphones before. This notch is more pleasing and occupies less space hence making it practical as well. Nonetheless, some users might still differ and if that is the case, there is an easy way to hide it. Within this notch the main sensor is the camera. Similarly, the rear is made of glass and it carries dual cameras along with the centralized fingerprint sensor — which performs well and is quite reliable. Our phone arrived in the Black Sea finish, otherwise you can also get it in Ice Lake and Blue Ocean. The color finish is solid and doesn’t have a gradient which will appeal to traditional customers.

Further along, the front and rear glass are joined by a plastic chassis. The coating on it is rubberized giving it a matte finish with good grip. The brand could’ve gone with premium metal but we don’t mind that as we have observed that plastic is more durable and practical. Within this surround, at the bottom, there is a microUSB port, 3.5mm headphone jack as well as the speaker grill. USB Type-C is missed here and Realme should’ve gone with the new standard with their 2 Pro. As for the speakers, they get quite loud and are adequate for the phone size. Browsing more, the volume buttons are on the left of the phone and the power button is on the right. There is a SIM tray on the right as well and within this there is a microSD card slot which supports up-to 256GB of expansion.

In terms of internal hardware, Realme 2 Pro comes with a Snapdragon 660 processor which is coupled with 8GB of RAM. Generally, these midrange processors such as the 660 only see upto a max of 6GB of RAM but this is one of the first few phones to have it with 8GB. While the benefits might not be as prominent but they are still there with 2GB of extra RAM. Further, the 128GB internal storage with option to expand further is yet another good offering with Realme 2 Pro. The Snapdragon 660 has been known for its power-sipping standby state along with adequate performance when needed and that is exactly the case with Realme 2 Pro. We have attached syntethic benchmark results for a more detailed look. As for our real life tests, the phone performed well with apps and daily tasks.

Realme 2 Pro: Camera

As other hardware has pretty much standardized itself, main differentiating factor between smartphones these days is the camera performance. Consumers look to get best photo quality out of their smartphones as the days of dedicated cameras are long gone. Seeing this, brands have not only outfitted dual cameras in flagships but some have even moved on to triple lens. As for Realme 2 Pro, it has a dual camera setup on the back. One sensor acts as the main — 16MP with f/1.7 — whilst other is there to assist for better bokeh — 2MP with f/2.0. That’s for the hardware, for software, Realme 2 Pro uses AI assistance with scene detection for 16 different scenarios.

The photos we took with the Realme 2 Pro came out to be good. Nothing out of the ordinary, the only gripe we have is the absence of a dedicated Night Mode which should be available in this phone. Regardless, the AI does offer good post processing coupled with HDR. Also, it is worthy to note that the Portrait Mode works quite well and it recognizes boundaries accurately, as can be seen in our test shots.

Also, there is a 1X to 2X zoom option available. At first glance it seems as though it is optical but it is actually not, rather the software digitally narrows down the frame — same as once you crop the photo after taking it. Here are few zoom shots:

Realme 2 Pro: Connectivity and Battery

For connections, the 2 Pro comes with all the standard options. There is 4G LTE support, dual SIM functionality and also latest Bluetooth 5.0 which allows for multiple device pairing. Seeing how Realme targets the value focused user, it has also decided to ship 3.5mm headphone jack which is a rare option these days.

As for the battery, Realme 2 Pro has a lot of it. There is a large 3,500 mAh module fitted within the phone. For our tests, this lasted for easily a day with heavy use. For a mixed usage scenario, we can easily see this phone stretch a day and couple of hours more. This is all thanks to the power efficient Snapdragon 660 and also a well managed ColorOS Android skin, discussed in detail ahead. The only gripe here is fast charging support. We think Realme could’ve gone with a good fast charging solutin that lets users top up their battery quite fast. Further, the included charger takes more than 1 and half hour to bring the phone back up to 100 percent from 0.

Realme 2 Pro: Software

Realme, benefiting from its Oppo origins, runs ColorOS 5.2 on its smartphone. This skin has been running on Oppo phones for quite some time hence it has been refined and optimized. Further, the customization options available with ColorOS are definitely one of the most we have seen. Despite running older Android 8.1 Oreo, the phone receives continuous security updates to stay on par with other devices. Even more, due to this skin, Realme 2 Pro has latest Pie features such as Navigation gestures and split-screen built-in.

Speaking more of software, the Realme 2 Pro has face-unlock capabilities which allows users to easily unlock their phone by just raising it. The overall relaibility was good even in low-light conditions. Thankfully, Realme 2 Pro doesn’t only rely on the face unlock, rather it has a dedicated fingerprint sensor on the back as well which can be used as a backup to unlock the phone. In terms of actual interface design, their is a significant use of vibrant colors which will definitely appeal to the youth and it is quite easy to navigate as well. Lastly, it is important to mention that 8GB RAM does allow to keep more apps running at the same time and their is no hiccup of restarting an older app. This also adds to the battery performance as the processor doesn’t have to do extra work to bring back an app.

Default bundled Realme 2 Pro Apps and Features:

  • Face Unlock: To ease users, ColorOS supports face unlock. Through this, users just need to look at the phone and swipe up to unlock. The service is reliable in low lit conditions and works quite fast.
  • Realme Secure Keyboard: To avoid any security risks, ColorOS automatically detects when users are inputting sensitive data such as passwords and automatically switched to its secure keyboard rather than allowing third-party keyboards to input.
  • Smart Sidebar: As part of accessibility offerings, there is a smart sidebar which can be activated and the utilized by a simple swipe at any screen. Through this users can access apps and different functions like screenshots.
  • Split Screen: To boost productivity, ColorOS also has its own split screen feature which lets users utilize two apps at once through split screen.
  • Navigation Gestures: In order to provide users with extended display space and provide easy navigation, ColorOS supports complete navigation gestures.

Realme 2 Pro: Screenshots

Realme 2 Pro: Gallery