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Realme C12 review: Buy this for battery, design

Is it worth buying the Realme C12 at Rs 8,999? Read our review to find out.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Rs. 8,999
Written by Sneha Saha | Kolkata |
August 29, 2020 4:03:26 pm
Realme C12 review (Express photo: Sneha Saha)

Realme wants to offer more choices in the sub-Rs 10,000 segment with its recently announced C series including the Realme C12 and Realme C15. Just a month ago the company announced the Realme C11 priced at Rs 7,999. Strategically, the Realme C12 should have arrived next year, given the brand used to bring just one C series a year. But the Realme C12 is already here for consumers and available for purchase.

The company says, it has changed the strategy and the Realme C12 isn’t the successor to the C11. It says with the Realme C11, C12, and the C15 the company wants to serve consumers at every price point possible. With the C12, the target is consumers looking for a smartphone under Rs 9,000. The phone starts at Rs 8,999 for the base model.

Realme C12 price: Starts at Rs 8,999

Realme C12 specifications: 6.5-inch IPS LCD display | Realme UI based on Android 10 | MediaTek Helio G35 processor | Triple rear cameras (13MP + 2MP B/W + 2MP) | 5MP front camera | 6000mAh battery | 10W charging support | rear mounted fingerprint sensor | Gorilla Glass support on the front | Polycarbonate back | MicroUSB support

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I have extensively used the Realme C12 as my primary device for the last one week and it’s good to see that brand is not compromising on features even on its budget phones. One of the key highlights of the C12 is its big 6000mAh battery.

Realme C12 in a good-looking smartphone (Express photo: Sneha Saha)

What’s good

If you ask me, the best thing about the Realme C12 is not its unique design or the big display but the battery, which is one of the most important aspects for anyone using a smartphone. The massive 6000mAh battery lasted nearly two days for me. I used the phone as my primary device for around seven days, which means I played games, watched movies, spent hours on calls, browsed social media platforms, sent emails and more. The Realme C12 was able to handle all these activities and lasted more than I expected it to.

The phone, however, takes quite some time to charge up completely and that’s because there is no fast charging support despite the large battery. So, you must keep your powerbank charged up before the phone drains out. Notably, the phone comes with micro USB support which is quite disappointing.

I have always had problems with Realme repeating design for its phones. That’s not the case with the C12. The Realme phone features a unique design that makes it stand out from the competition. The Geometric Gradient design makes the phone look stylish and trendy and the texture offers a good feel and grip. Due to the unique textured back, you don’t have to worry about fingerprint smudges on the back cover. The rear panel incorporates the square-shaped triple camera module and a circular fingerprint sensor that’s quick to unlock the device. The face ID is also fast.

In outdoors, maximum brightness isn’t enough (Express photo: Sneha Saha)

Given that almost everyone depends on their mobile device for work to connect with friends and family, a phone with a big screen is a must. The Realme C12 gets a thumbs up in this department too. I watched YouTube videos and a couple of movies on the C12 and found the brightness to be adequate inside the home. But when I went for a walk on my terrace even the maximum brightness wasn’t enough to check my emails.

What’s not so good

Two areas where I feel the Realme phone could have been better are performance and camera. These two departments are extremely important for each one of us given everyone wants a phone with a good camera and handle basic tasks well. The Realme C12, since the very beginning, lagged and slowed down. It took a noticeable time to open an app or switch between two or more applications. I used the phone for every possible task including sending emails, video calls, browsing social media, and watching videos and movies, playing games and more. Even games like subway surfer didn’t run smoothly.

Another issue I faced with the phone is its weight because of the large battery. The C12 felt extremely heavy in the hands but it is possible to use it with one hand.

The phone offers a good hand feel and grip (Express photo: Sneha Saha)

Camera is a department where every budget phone disappoints. The camera of the Realme C12 is just decent. Pictures clicked in good lightning look decent but in most pictures detailed were missing and colours looked over saturated. Most photos captured in low-light lacked details and looked grainy. Similar was the case with portrait and macro shots as well. Selfies captured with the Realme C2 look just fine, with details missing out here as well.

Realme C12 day light camera sample Photos is good light look decent Pictures miss out on details Photos capture with the Realme C12 look over saturated

Is Realme C12 good for you?

Overall, the Realme C12 is a decent option to consider if you have a tight budget and can’t spend a penny more than Rs 9,000. The phone has both pros and cons. While in the design, battery and display departments the phone looks good to me, performance and camera are two areas that could have been better. In the same price segment, there are other options available like the Redmi 9.

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