Realme 8 Pro First Impressions: Should the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro Max worry?

Realme 8 Pro comes with 108-megapixel quad rear cameras, 50W fast charging tech, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G SoC, an in-display fingerprint scanner, and more.

Published:Wed, March 24, 2021 11:29pm

By Vanshika Malhotra


The 108-megapixel camera is all the hype these days. Whether it be a luxurious Samsung S21 Ultra or an affordable Redmi Note from Xiaomi, the "108MP" tag is visible everywhere. So how can Realme stay behind? Hence, the Realme 8 Pro has taken shape, trying to lure us with its 108-megapixel quad rear cameras, a Super AMOLED display, 50W fast charging, and almost everything that can force people into the Realme online/offline stores and buy the device.

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The device, being the more better-equipped sibling of the Realme 8, is the one that is preserved for people who look for 'Pro' stuff and are ready to spend some extra bucks for the same. But how Pro is it? I spent some time with the Realme 8 Pro and here's what my initial impressions of the device are.


Design: Dare to leap, dare to buy?

Realme is seen experimenting with its smartphone designs and the 8 Pro is another such experiment. While experiments eventually make us better, this phone is just not the one. The device flaunts a square-shaped rear camera module, which includes four big circular housings (a bit like the iPhone 12 Pro) to fit within. It does look different for a Realme phone but isn't one of the good-looking ones. While the finishing is decent, the cameras feel quite in-the-face. Since it juts out a bit, it doesn't sit well on any surface, which disturbed the OCD in me. Design, however, is subjective and there might be many out there who would like this bold theme.


Another disturbing element is the huge 'Dare to Leap' tagline that runs vertically throughout the rear. Yes, motivation is always needed, but a tagline this big, that too on a smartphone, feels distracting. Realme fans may love the idea but the general audience (including me) would want a minimal design. I feel the matte texture, painted in blue is enough to add some sparkle. I like the overall texture on the rear; it reminds me of the Oppo Reno 5 Pro.

But, one thing that is truly lovable about the Realme 8 Pro is the lightweight form. Using it, especially with one hand, is never a problem and the convenience it brings is noteworthy.

Upfront, there is a punch-hole display which is currently the norm for most smartphones these days. This is topped with the goodness of Super AMOLED display tech, something which has started sneaking into the budget segment and one can never dislike it.

The 6.4-inch Full HD+ Super AMOLED display has so far proven to be a delight to consume content on. A high refresh rate is, sadly, absent here and mobile gamers may miss that. The colour saturation is towards the higher side but it often ends up offering an interesting viewing experience. Brightness levels aren't high though, especially under the sun.

The cameras raise hopes, sky-high

The camera configuration is something that raises high hopes. There is a 108-megapixel main camera with PDAF, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide lens, a 2-megapixel macro lens, and a 2-megapixel B&W lens. The front snapper is rated at 16-megapixel. Apart from some big numbers, there are the appealing-enough camera features too. The phone comes with Tilt-Shift mode for time-lapse videos, Starry mode, Dynamic Bokeh, Portrait mode, Super Nightscape, AI Scene Recognition, AI Beauty, HDR, Dual-Video mode, and more. All this attracts, eh?

The Realme 8 Pro cameras certainly raise high hopes, more so when the '108MP' stamp has begun embossing on budget phones. I haven't used the cameras to a great extent but for my initial impressions, the Realme 8 Pro gives out a decent output. The images are mostly decent but there's one trait that stands true for all pictures: the processing nature of the algorithms. The images, both taken from the rear and front cameras, appear quite processed. This can be liked by many and disliked by some. Personally, I am not inclined towards this processed look, but hey, most of such photos make it to your Instagram, right?

I am yet to test the phone's cameras extensively, hence, stay tuned for a full review of the same.

Realme 8 Pro features, specs

The Realme 8 Pro comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G chip, which is coupled with two RAM options: 6GB and 8GB. There is a single 128GB of storage option, which can be expanded via a microSD card.

It is backed by a 4,500mAh battery with 50W SuperDart Charge. Some noteworthy features include Realme UI 2.0 based on Android 11. Ultra-fast in-display fingerprint scanner (which was quite snappy), dedicated slots for dual-SIM and a memory card, USB Type-C port, inclusion of a 65W fast charger in-the-box, and Hi-Res Audio.

Realme 8 Pro first impressions

The Realme 8 Pro, priced at Rs 17,999, is another device in the 'well-specced phones on a budget' bandwagon. It tries to provide us with Pro-grade features and specs, at least on paper. It definitely has enough of the "new 2021 stuff" to bring attention to itself.

But, the competition is severe. The Redmi Note 10 Pro Max is the one that sets a benchmark in the budget arena and the Realme 8 Pro has a lot to handle. How well it handles this, will be explored in our full review. Hence, stay tuned to this space.

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