Best Realme C55 Review: Style Over Substance?

Realme C55 Review: Realme’s C55 examines a number of paper boxes but it’s not without its flaws. Realme’s C55 caught the attention of the world when it was launched in Indonesia as the first Android smartphone to come with an Apple-like Dynamic Island characteristic. Realme has been promoting the feature of its software as “Mini Capsule”.

The company has now launched this budget phone in India however, it’s obvious the Mini Capsule is not the most intriguing feature and was barely mentioned at the event. What is likely to garner lots of interest in India is the price and design.

Realme’s C-series models are advertised as affordable options for many years. Although it’s exciting to find a device from the C-series with a unique design, you must remember that all of it comes with an expense. The cost for the Realme C55 begins at a lower price point instead of the standard low-end sub-Rs. 10,000 pricing. This phone is designed as a replacement for the Realme C33 (2023) and can also be upgraded to the C35 also, which are entry-level handsets that are powered through Unisoc SoCs.

I quickly pointed out the fact that this phone isn’t running 5G and that it felt sloppy at best when I first had impressions of the phone. A month later and nothing has changed even with a couple of software updates. However, I’ve discovered a few additional issues. These have related to its user interface but can also be related to battery performance. Is this the Realme C55 still an easy choice among the many low-cost smartphones? Check out the review to find out!

Realme C55 price in India

The Realme C55 is available in three variations. There’s the 4GB RAM as well as 64GB storage option priced at 10,999. the 64GB storage and 6GB RAM version are priced at just Rs. 11,999. The version that comes with 8GB RAM, and 128GB storage is priced at an affordable price of Rs. 13,999 in India.

It’s good to have choices, and it’s nice to find Realme offering so many options for a device of the C-series. It’s the Realme C55 is also the first model in the C-series to have eight GB of memory. The phone comes in two different finishes in two finishes – Sunshower and Rainy Night. I received the 8GB RAM version with the Sunshower finish for review.

Realme C55 design

Realme tried to revamp its C-series models to a modern elegant look with the announcement of its C35 phone last year. Although it was an improvement over the bare-bones phones that were previously offered in the C-series basically the only thing positive that I learned when I read my report.

When it comes to style, Realme has taken things more to the C55. It looks sleek and contemporary with its clean lines, sleek body as well as flat side. It has a flat display on the front and unlike the C35 model, this one is of the hole-punch design, so it is able to keep in line with the phone’s contemporary design. The bezels on the top, left and right are slim and thin, and the one at the bottom is quite thick.

Best Realme C55 Review Style Over Substance

The phone can be turned upside down, and it’s hard to distinguish this from an affordable phone for two reasons. There’s a dual-tone look on the back with an elegantly striped matte texture throughout, as well as a polished surface surrounding the cameras. It’s refreshing even for a phone that’s budget. Additionally, the matte finish is effective at removing fingerprints. The frame and rear panel are constructed of polycarbonate which makes them less susceptible to cracking when dropped as glass. Realme makes use of Panda Glass to display the product. It’s susceptible to smudges, but they are easy to wipe off.

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The phone weighs in at 189g which is a little heavy and feels quite thin at 7.89mm. The phone doesn’t come with an IP rating, and the phone doesn’t have stereo speakers, but you get the 3.5mm headphone jack as well as the Type-C USB port located at the bottom. A fingerprint scanner is built in the power button that I found a little difficult to press since it’s almost in line with the flat surface of the frame.

The Realme C55 specification and its software

Realme C55 Realme C55 has a MediaTek Helio G88 SoC. This implies that it is not equipped with 5G connectivity. Realme states that the phone is powered by LPDDR4X RAM as well as EMMC 5.1 storage. The SIM tray comes with two slots that can accommodate two nano-SIMs as well as a dedicated slot that can hold up to 1TB microSD cards, which is a nice feature to have.

Standards for connectivity include 4G LTE Dual-band Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.2 in addition to the standard array of global positioning and sensor systems. The phone is powered by an energy-efficient battery that can last for 5,000mAh. It also comes with a wired charger included in the box.

Its Realme C55 runs Realme UI 4.0 which is built on the Android 13 platform. Android 13. It’s packed with a variety of Realme and third-party applications. This includes two “Messages” apps for SMS, two file managers and two note-taking applications, and on and on. This can become very confusing for novice users It’s also a hassle because you can’t uninstall all of these unnecessary apps. A majority of third-party preinstalled apps can be removed by you to clear some storage space. It was irritating to see advertisements and notifications for promotions on apps like the Game Center as well as App Market every day.

Realme C55 performance

The 6.72-inch Full-HD+ IPS LCD display is equipped with a 90Hz maximum refresh rate for the screen. It can be set to 60Hz or 90Hz depending on the app that is being used and the content being displayed. The display is bright and bright enough to be able to watch the content outdoors on a sunny afternoon. It also has excellent viewing angles too. In terms of streaming, it’s great to see Widevine L1 certification which allows for playback in full HD quality.

The user experience did not satisfy my expectations. Realme UI 4.0 was not optimized for this hardware, as I observed when using the interface, minimizing applications, and scrolling through video-laden feeds in apps such as Instagram as well as other popular applications. The overall slowing of the screen and noticeable lag the entire experience, and it seemed as if it was trying its best to keep pace with my activities.

I was able to test the 8GB RAM version and can only imagine what the experience will be for the variant with 4GB RAM. I also encountered some stuttering issues when streaming videos, but this was fixed with the latest software update which was available several days prior to the publication of this review.

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For Mini Capsule, little has changed since I first tried it out about a month ago. Many people don’t even realize the fact that it exists because it’s so difficult to miss the animated notifications prompts that expand within the holes of the cameras. This is one of the things Samsung excels at. Samsung excels at its pop-up notifications which are also displayed in a form of a capsule and are more efficient since they display different types of notifications, as opposed to the few prompts Realme’s Mini-Capsule display.

For benchmarks in terms of benchmarks, it’s a good choice for benchmarking. Realme C55 performs as expected considering that it is equipped with a MediaTek Helio SoC. The results weren’t spectacular, however. The iQoo Z6 Lite managed better scores using the Qualcomm Snapdragon 4 Generation 1 SoC.

Its Realme C55 managed 2,57,736 points in AnTuTu alongside 422 and 1,411 in Geekbench’s multi-core and single-core tests. Graphics performance was not great either and this is the reason for the slowdowns and stutters within the UI. The phone recorded 39fps in the GFXBench T-Rex test and fourteen frames per second in Manhattan 3.1 in addition to 8.5fps during Car Chase.

The gaming performance was lower than normal. Call of Duty: Mobile could be played at medium graphics quality and High framerate but it would start to lag after 15 minutes of playtime and that’s also when the phone begins to warm up. Asphalt 9 Legends turned out to be quite heavy even at the smallest graphic setting (Performance) which resulted in a lot of stuttering and lag. This phone is best suited for simpler casual games. The single speaker is quite loud, but the sound can be distorted when played at higher volumes.

My typical use of the Realme C55 consisted of an hour of gaming and an hour or two of streaming videos (on Wi-Fi) as well as navigating different social media applications and two email accounts that were constantly synchronized. Although it was a little easy I was a bit surprised the phone was able to last for a few hours on one charge. It could be due to the processor that isn’t up to par and the battery’s capacity of 5,000mAh to last more than a full day, which is standard for the majority of phones that are budget-friendly these days.

Our regular HD battery test for video loops did not last for 14 hours and 43 minutes that are in the middle when compared to other phones at this price. However, the 33W charger was able to charge the phone from a dead state to fully charged in just 1 hour and 10 minutes, which seems impressive.

Realme C55 cameras

Realme C55 Realme C55 has two rear-facing cameras: a primary 64-megapixel camera, and a depth sensor that is used to gather depth information when in portrait mode. Selfies are managed by a front camera with 8 megapixels. Its camera application interface is simple to use and has all the essential options available on the viewfinder.

Realme states that the sensor’s 64-megapixel resolution comes from the earlier GT Master Edition so I was quite surprised to find its performance in a phone that isn’t expensive. But, you have to remember that the camera’s performance is also dependent on the processor which is why the GT Master Edition had a better middle-of-the-road Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G soC.

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The quality of images taken during daylight was quite impressive. The photos showed good quality and dynamic range with good clarity. Colors were generally slightly over-saturated and there were some bluish hues in photographs however at this price point, it’s not difficult to be satisfied. Close-ups turned out clear and sharp with minimal noise and great clarity. However, I noticed how slow the camera could focus in indoor situations during the day, and I frequently required tapping to focus while shooting objects.

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Selfies looked a little brighter in daylight but with decent clarity and range. Edge detection in portrait mode making use of the camera for selfies was typical for this category. In low light, selfies turned out slightly soft and noisy regardless of which mode I selected. Edge detection wasn’t very accurate as well.

The camera’s performance in low-light Auto mode wasn’t the best. It struggled to focus on dimly lit areas and the resultant images were a little blurry and lacking in detail. The specially-designed Night mode greatly improved the quality of the images, providing lots of detail with sharpness. It also added some texture. The results were stunning for this particular segment, however, it takes about 4-5 minutes to take a photo and if you don’t keep the phone in a steady position, the quality of your images will decrease dramatically.

The video quality is only 1080p at 60 frames per second. The footage recorded had good detail however it was lacking in dynamic range. Also, there are some highlights that were clipped. Videos are not stabilized at all which makes them appear rather shaky. When recording in low light, at 30fps and 1080p resolution resulted in higher quality with good dynamic range, however, the video was still very lacking in detail and had the appearance of noise. The videos were a bit shaky and focus was a challenge.

Realme C55: Verdict

In 2023, a number of brands of smartphones will be offering 5G models that are priced at the lower price point of the segment. The most popular is an Infinix Hot 20 5G (Review) priced from Rs. 11,499, and the Poco M4 5G at Rs. 11,999 to mention just a few. There are also smartphones, like for instance the iQoo Z6 Lite 5G, priced at the price of Rs. 13,999 and up. It also offers superior software performance and excellent camera performance as well as 5G connectivity.

Realme believes it’s found the perfect spot, with an attractive design (for a smartphone that is budget-friendly) and a camera that takes decent photographs in daylight. But, the battery performance isn’t quite up to the mark for a phone with a low-cost price, and the operating system is packed to the brim with extra features. My phone was slow and sluggish throughout the review time even though it has a capacity of 8GB memory. This is what makes it Realme C55 really hard to recommend. You should only consider it in the event that you require a top camera or you are willing to overlook its weaknesses due to its unique design.

Sunil Kumar writes about smartphones and laptops for Gadgets360TechNews, out of Delhi. He is the Deputy Editor (Reviews) at Gadgets360TechNews. He has frequently written about the smartphone and PC industry and also has an interest in photography.

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