For a company established four years ago - in a hyper-competitive smartphone market - it can be difficult to really stand out. You either need to have great specs, which many companies can now achieve. Or, have great design and build, to impress the consumer. Maybe that’s why realme has incorporated a whole new design studio to funnel talent and encourage artists and designers to create new designs. One such example is the latest racing-inspired GT NEO 3T that the company has launched in India.
The first thing that catches my eye is the checkered flag design adorning the back. On the white review unit I’ve got, the design is subtle, and racing enthusiasts might find it appealing. While I like the matt finish back, which is thankfully not slippery to touch, I can’t escape the plastic-y tactile experience.
The phone is a couple of grams shy of 200 grams, and has a sizeable 6.62-inch AMOLED display with vivid colours that make media very engaging to watch on the phone.
There’s an annoying amount of bloatware as I get the phone started, and like any self-respecting millennial, I uninstall all the TikTok copycats first. Once I’ve pared it down to only the apps I need, it’s smooth sailing. One of the coolest features on the phone is the one that lets me draw endless trippy wallpapers that can be used for the always-on display screen.
realme doesn’t pitch the GT NEO 3T exclusively as a gaming smartphone but it has all the makings of one! For starters, it’s powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 5G flagship processor. Second, the company has integrated a stainless steel vapour cooling system to dissipate heat well. And I definitely didn’t face any heating issues during usage at all. Third, the display comes with up to 120 Hz refresh rate which means with gaming - and any other visual media - the rendering is smooth as butter.
The realme GT NEO 3T also houses a 64MP primary camera, making pictures clearer and brighter along with a 16MP front camera under a punch-hole on the left. I open the app to see a preset dramatic filter, super nightscape mode, and street photography mode, alongside the usual modes and controls. The camera on the phone is a bit of a mixed bag. With photos, portraits, and videos it ordinarily performs well. Photos where the subject hasn’t been perfectly still always turn out blurry. The quality of photos taken with anything beyond 2x zoom is less than ideal. With night mode on, the realme GT Neo 3T manages to capture some decent photos, post sundown.
The realme GT NEO 3T is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 5G flagship processor, which comes with Kryo 585 CPU and Adreno 650 GPU. During my usage, across app categories, there was no slowing down or stutters at any point in time. (AnTuTu benchmark results to be added here)
Packed with a whopping 5,000 mAh battery, the realme GT NEO 3T goes on and on even with heavy usage. It didn’t matter if it was at the end of a day with moderate or heavy usage, I never found panic-looking for its charger, in days! With low usage for about a couple of days and then some heavy gaming, the phone once stayed on for a good 3-4 days! Powered by 80W SuperDart charge technology, the realme GT NEO 3T went from being completely drained to about 70 per cent battery in just about 30 minutes. Definitely impressive! The smartphone comes with Smart Multi-IC chip protection, which makes charging safer and more efficient as well as adaptive in-game quick-charging, allowing fast charging during gaming.
It’s difficult to find an affordable smartphone that gets so much right - a crisp, smooth display, amazing battery life, and a great setup for both casual and serious gaming. While I’d personally have liked a better camera and a more elegant build quality, I know you win some and you lose some, especially in the mid-range price segment. Overall, this device goes to show that realme is no backseat driver, when it comes to mid-range smartphones in the Indian market.
Price - ₹29,999 (6GB+128GB)
Pros - Brilliant AMOLED display, impressive battery life.
Cons - Plastic finish, no major camera improvements