For it’s price, there’s really not much more to ask for.
- Design looks good
- Decent performance
- Decent optics
- Excellent battery life
- Competitive price tag
- Software needs a bit of work
- Still uses a microUSB port
- 64GB of storage would've been nice
narzo 50i Prime Specifications
|OS||Android 11 + realme UI R Edition|
|Battery||5,000mAh + Reverse Charging|
narzo recently announced a limited-time price drop for the narzo 50i Prime, bringing its price down to only PHP 3,799. That makes it one of the most affordable entry-level smartphones you can get today. For those looking for a basic device for light tasks like browsing the web and social media, as well as streaming music and videos and are on a tight budget, this may just well be the answer.
For this review, please keep in mind the phrase “relative to its price.”
Design and Build Quality
Design-wise, the narzo 50i Prime does not look like your typical entry-level smartphone. It’s got a grooved stripe back panel that feels nice to the touch, and a camera island that’s got a flat look for a good contrast, along with a bit of branding.
You get flat sides, with both the volume rocker and power button on the right side, and the SIM slot on the left, which houses a triple SIM tray. As expected, it sticks to a microUSB port, but there’s also a headphone jack, so I guess that kind of balances things out.
There’s a 6.5-inch screen with HD+ resolution. It’s nothing to write home about, but it’s still a decent screen for media consumption.
narzo 50i Prime is powered by a UNISOC T612 processor, which may not be the most popular, but definitely delivers decent performance for an entry-level device. If you’re day-to-day load is like mine, which means a bit of Spotify, Facebook, Messenger, Gmail, YouTube, and e-wallet apps, then you won’t run into problems with this phone.
There’s 3GB of RAM, which should be okay for very light multi-tasking, and 32GB of storage, which I think is not enough, even at this price point. I only installed a couple of social media apps Mobile Legends, and Call of Duty Mobile (without hardly anything downloaded) and it’s already down to less than 3GB of free space.
Speaking of which, you wouldn’t really expect a device at this price point to be able to game well, but there are exceptions, like this phone, at least for Mobile Legends, which I was able to set to High Frame Rate and High Graphics Quality with no major issues.
narzo 50i Prime uses a single 8MP shooter, and it actually captures decent photos, at least most of the time. The dynamic range and detail can be off in some instances, but overall, this camera does the job, especially for your usual social media posts. The 5MP selfie cam is just as good, though I kind of wish it had Portrait mode available.
narzo 50i Prime runs Android 11 with realme UI R Edition, which is basically a lighter version of the brand’s Android skin that’s made especially for entry-level devices.
Apart from the suite of Google Apps, there are also a number of pre-loaded apps which don’t help in terms of space, but you can uninstall most of them. I only wish they were optional. The device also still runs on an Android 11, and at the time of writing, we have not yet received news as to whether it’ll get Android 12.
While the UI resembles a stock-feel and look, I did come across some bits that could be improved, such as having to go to the app info page to uninstall an app from the homescreen. I ran into an issue when trying to install messenger as well, as the app just would not open, until I restarted the phone. Not sure if this is a hardware or software thing.
In my case which is a bit of YouTube, Spotify, Facebook, Messenger, Viber, some photography on the side, and a few games of Mobile Legends, all on Wi-Fi, the narzo 50i Prime’s 5,000mAh battery lasted around 2 days. Of course, it may be a different story depending on the apps you use, and if you’re on mobile data.
The phone does not come with a charger, which means those who don’t have a spare at home will have to get one somewhere, possibly entailing additional cost.
When you consider its current PHP 3,799 price tag, there’s very little to dislike about the narzo 50i Prime. It looks great, has decent performance and cameras, and it’s got great battery life. Basically, what you’d need from something that’s simple and just works.
On the flip side, the software needs a bit of polishing, and 32GB of internal storage is just too little, though I sort of understand that if they did double it, that could make the price go up. Get it here.
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.