Realme X50 Pro: A 5G-ready smartphone that takes on the likes of OnePlus 7T
Coming on the heels of the X2 Pro is India’s first Snapdragon 865 5G chipset-powered smartphone. The X50 Pro 5G is Realme’s second attempt at a flagship smartphone in India.
One may wonder why a 5G smartphone has been launched in India when network capabilities are at least a year away. The answer is simple. If a manufacturer wants to use Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 865 processor in their smartphone then they must also pair it with the Snapdragon X55 modem (a 5G modem) whether they want to or not. That’s what Realme is doing here with the X50 Pro.
The X50 Pro has a Snapdragon 865 chipset, 90Hz display, quad-camera setup on the back, and 65W fast charging. This is definitely Realme’s most ambitious phone till date and is here to take on the likes of OnePlus 7T, Samsung Galaxy S10 Lite, and others.
Let’s see how it stacks up against the competition.
Design and display
The most striking feature of the X50 Pro is the design itself. The X50 Pro has a glass front and back and a frosted finish that is similar to the OnePlus 7T. It has a matte finish and comes in two low-saturated, crowd-pleasing colours: Rust Red and Moss Green.
The premium feel comes through with the Gorilla Glass 5 both on the back and the front. It may be smaller than its predecessor, the X2 Pro, but it’s definitely heavier. The X50 Pro weighs in at around 205gm and measures 8.9m at its thickest.
The smooth matte finish provides a nice grip; though heavy, the phone’s weight has been equally distributed in a way that your hand never tires from holding it.
The X50 Pro’s vertical quad-camera setup may not be different from the Realme smartphones released earlier, and neither is the dual-tone colour shifting gradient. What’s different this time around is the dual punch-hole camera on the front, a first for the company.
Realme follows a minimalistic approach in its button and port placements: the power button is on the right and volume rockers on the left. On the bottom, there is a SIM card slot and a USB Type-C port for charging and listening to music (Realme omitted the 3.5mm jack this time around). The logo and the rear-camera setup are both on the left side of the rear panel, giving the X50 Pro a clean look.
The X50 Pro sports a 6.44-inch Full HD+ (2,400x1,080 resolution) Super AMOLED screen with a 20:9 aspect ratio. The kicker is that the smartphone has a 90Hz high refresh rate for smoother transitions when scrolling through all your social media feeds, browsing the web, playing games, and watching videos. The screen is certified for HDR10+playback.
The screen is dull and does not stand out. However, it delivers for the price range. The X50 Pro’s display is vibrant and sports punchy colours. It’s got good viewing angles and just about average sunlight legibility.
The high refresh rate is a welcome addition. For those who use a 90Hz (or even a 120Hz) refresh rate, they just can’t go back to the days of 60Hz refresh rates. The animations are smoother and it’s a treat playing video games on 90Hz.
Performance and battery life
The X50 Pro sports a Snapdragon 865 chipset, which is 25 percent faster than the previous generation. The 865 chipset breezes through tasks no matter what you throw at it. It’s a pleasure playing games like Call of Duty Mobile, PUBG, and others on this phone.
The Snapdragon 865 chipset combined with the 90Hz display ensures a fast and smooth experience. Multitasking with over 20 Google Chrome open tabs, watching videos on YouTube, texting on WhatsApp, and playing games simultaneously and the smartphone doesn’t heat up nor crumble under the pressure. There were only a few moments when the phone stuttered before swiftly picking itself up.
It was only during an extended gaming session of Call of Duty Mobile that we noticed the rear panel of the smartphone heating up quite considerably.
The 4,200mAh battery is good to last you just over a day. The average screen-on-time (SoT) of just over five hours is strictly average.
On the upside, the smartphone charges from zero to 100 percent in flat thirty-five minutes using the 65W SuperDart charging feature. That’s faster than any other smartphone in the Indian market and is sure to make the competition sit up and notice.
Naturally, the smartphone heats up during the charging process, but one needn’t worry about battery life since it can be topped up in no time.
The quad-camera setup on the X50 Pro consists of a 64-megapixel primary shooter, a 12-megapixel telephoto lens (with 20x hybrid zoom), an 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle lens (doubling up as a macro camera) and a 2-megapixel monochrome lens for portrait shots.
It’s a similar setup to the X2 Pro but takes over-processed images with less detail and clarity. The X2 Pro is a better shooter.
The daylight images from the X50 Pro had good details with a decent amount of clarity: relatively sharp with good dynamic range. Enable HDR mode along with turning on AI and you’ll get better colours.
The monochrome lens was a disappointment as it often failed to focus on the image at hand.
Low-light photography is a bit of a mixed bag; the software helps remove the noise but doesn’t do much to the brightness.
The phone is powered by the brand new Realme UI 1.0, based on Android 10. The UI, different than Oppo’s ColorOS in many ways, feels light and fluid. However, the icons lack the sharpness characteristic of other UIs and the gestures/features pale in comparison to OnePlus’ Oxygen OS.
It’s a good first attempt at a UI but cutting down the bloatware should be the first step of improvement when version 2.0 comes out.
What can be improved?
- Lack of waterproof rating and wireless charging: Realme decided not to include any IP water and dust resistance rating. Just like the OnePlus 7T, there’s no wireless charging.
- Google Assistant gets activated way too easily.
- The phone itself is quite heavy. However, one doesn’t feel the weight much unless they use it for long stretches.
- A better version of the Realme UI
- A 4G version in a reduced price range
The Realme X50 Pro 5G comes in three different variants. There’s the 6GB RAM+128GB storage variant at Rs 37,999. The 8GB+128GB model is priced at Rs 39,999. The top-end model with 12GB+256GB comes to Rs 44,999.
5G isn’t the selling point for the Realme X50 Pro as that will be useless in India until at least the middle of 2021. Having a top-of-the-line Snapdragon 865 processor does help improve the performance of the smartphone. On top of that, having 65W fast charging makes this smartphone a good buy.
Others that come in the same ambit include the OnePlus 7T, the upcoming OnePlus 7 (to be launched in April), and the gaming-focused iQOO 3.
If you want solid performance, good looks, and super-fast charging, then the Realme X50 Pro is the way to go. We would recommend getting the middle variant - 8GB + 128GB, priced at Rs 39,999.
(Edited by Evelyn Ratnakumar)