The Realme C1: Not Your Typical Budget Smartphone


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Realme is a brand which promises to offer products that offer great value for money. The C1, its debut device in the country has in fact received a lot of great feedback and is always sold out during flash sales. That’s thanks to an impressive spec sheet, for a price that’s just above PhP5,000.

Today, we take a look at the device, and see whether it really has what it takes to be called the budget king.


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Design and Build Quality

realme c1 u 31The Realme C1 sports a glossy plastic body, which somehow adds a more premium feel, and is also a smudge magnet. Thanks to matte coated sides, the device is very easy to hold and use with one hand.

realme c1 u 60You’ll find the volume rocker and SIM card slot on the left, while the opposite side houses the power button. As expected, it has standard microUSB port which sits with a speaker grill and microphone at the bottom.

realme c1 u 40At the back is a dual rear camera module, along with some branding. There’s no fingerprint sensor here, but I guess they had to cut back on something to keep the price in check.

realme c1 u 69The  6.2″ display may only have HD+ resolution, which is kind of expected at this price range, but it doesn’t ruin the experience in any way. Colors are punchy enough, text is sharp, and visibility under direct sunlight is also decent.


As a daily driver, the Realme C1 does a good job of taking on my usual tasks, such as updating our social media accounts, email, a bit of photos here and there, videos, and more. Its 2GB of RAM may leave you unimpressed on the multi-tasking side, but it can still whip out a decent gaming .performance

Unfortunately, we won’t be able to present any graphs or actually FPS values, since GameBench and ColorOS don’t seem to jive along well.

realme c1 u 13That being said, I can assure you that this phone can play PUBG Mobile at Smooth + High FPS Setting without any major issues. Same as with Real Racing 3, which gave an even better experience, and of course Mobile Legends, which can be played at High setting with High FPS mode ON.

The device also showed good thermal performance, as it never heated up to an uncomfortable level any time during our tests.


realme c1 cam 11realme c1 cam 13realme c1 cam 14realme c1 cam 15realme c1 cam 6realme c1 cam 10For its price, the Realme C1 can take photos with decent detail, sharpness and contrast, provided that there’s ample lighting. Its secondary camera, designed for depth-sensing also does a decent job of adding that background blur for portrait shots. It’s a bit bit sluggish when you want to preview a photo, which can be annoying at times.

realme c1 cam 1

Depth Effect OFF

realme c1 cam 2

Depth Effect ON

The front camera can take decent selfies as well. Not exactly the type you’ll expect to end up at a best photo quality contest, but should be enough for your usual social media posts.

realme c1 cam 5

With AI Beautification

It also has AI-assisted beautification, which I usually just leave to OFF< as it tends to overdo the corrections on my face.


The Realme C1 runs on Android 8.1 with ColorOS 5.2.1, which benefits from cosmetic improvements, and better performance. It still retains the nifty features such as Split Screen and Game Center, which basically optimizes the phone’s resources to give an engaging gaming experience.   The phone does support Face Unlock, which surprising also works well, and fast.


realme c1 battThe Realme C1 turns out to be impressive on the battery side as well. It was able to  churn out 16 hours of up time in PCMark’s Work 2.0 benchmark, which simulates data manipulation and minor editing. It takes a while to charge it back though, which is kind of expected.

Emman has been writing technical and feature articles since 2010. Prior to this, he became one of the instructors at Asia Pacific College in 2008, and eventually landed a job as Business Analyst and Technical Writer at Integrated Open Source Solutions for almost 3 years.

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