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Realme 12 Pro review: The best phone under Rs 25,000?

Realme has launched the Realme 12 Pro, a sub-25,000 rupee phone, and I've been testing it since its launch, here's what you should know.

Edited By: Manik Berry

Published: Feb 12, 2024, 11:18 AM IST | Updated: Feb 12, 2024, 11:20 AM IST

Realme 12 Pro featured
Realme 12 Pro featured

Story Highlights

  • The Realme 12 Pro is a sub-25,000 rupee smartphone.
  • It comes with a triple camera system with a main wide + ultrawide + telephoto lens
  • The phone also has Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip with 8GB RAM.
Realme 12 Pro 3.5 5
Techlusive Rating :
3.5/5

There are solid chances that you already know at least one person who has used or is currently using a Realme smartphone. Amidst its rising popularity, the brand has launched the Realme 12 Pro, a sub-25,000 rupee phone, and I’ve been testing it since its launch, here’s what you should know.

Here’s everything you need to know about the Realme 12 Pro before you make a buying decision. We’ll cover the Realme 12 Pro specifications, features, pros & cons, and general usage experience in this review, so each part will give you a clear idea of how this phone performs in every department, accompanied by a detailed verdict at the end.

Realme 12 Pro specifications

Specifications Realme 12 Pro
Display 6.7-inch FHD+ OLED display
120Hz Curved Vision screen
Cameras 50MP Main + 32MP Telephoto + 8MP Ultrawide
16MP selfie camera
Processor Snapdragon 6 Gen 1, 4nm chip
RAM + Storage 8GB + 128GB
8GB + 256GB
Battery 5000mAh
Charger 67-watt USB-A to C SUPERVOOC charger
Connectivity WiFi 6, Bluetooth 5.2, USB-C
Dimensions and Weight 161mm × 74mm × 8.75mm, 190 grams (approx.)
Colours Submarine blue, Navigator beige
Box Contents Realme 12 Pro, 67-Watt USB-A to C adapter, USB-A to C cable, SIM ejector tool, clear case, paperwork
Price Rs. 23,999

Realme 12 Pro box contents

The Realme 12 Pro is a budget smartphone so you get all the essentials within the box. In the first compartment, you get a clear case, SIM ejector tool, and some paperwork in a small box inside the main one. Then you get the 67-watt SUPERVOOC charger with a USB-A to C cable under the phone. So, everything you need to get started with the phone is right there, which is good.

Design and buildImage showing the back and cameras of the Realme 12 Pro

Coming to the phone now, Realme has taken inspiration from Luxury Swiss watches to design the Realme 12 Pro camera module. It looks like a Chronograph to some extent, and a shiny ring is running around the camera module and through the centre of the phone. While this ring and design make it recognizable, the centred camera bump also means it won’t wobble if you use it on a table.

The Realme 12 Pro has a textured vegan leather back that makes the phone easy to hold. However, the cameras make it top-heavy so it sometimes wants to jump out of your hand. Moreover, the Navigator beige vegan leather is a dirt magnet. You’ll end up with a dirty phone if you’re not using a case.

Display

Image showing Realme 12 Pro display outdoors under direct sunlight

Here’s the phone’s screen under direct sunlight

On paper, the Realme 12 Pro display is a 120Hz OLED curved vision display. The real-life usage is a different thing. It is easy to use indoors and goes fairly dim in low light as well. However, the display isn’t bright enough for use under direct sunlight. In short, it affects your experience if you use the phone outdoors, or while traveling and get direct sunlight on the screen, the screen.

Image showing Realme 12 Pro display outdoors in the shade

This is what the screen looks like under some shade

But you can overlook this issue for the Rs. 23,000 price tag. For this price, you’re getting an FHD+, 120Hz OLED screen with features like Always-On Display, and a dynamic refresh rate. The screen has fairly good contrast and color separation when it comes to indoor usage, and has enough detail to let you play games like BGMI and Asphalt.

Cameras

Photo showing the phone camera capturing image

At this budget, Realme has fitted this phone with a 50MP wide, 8MP ultrawide, and a proper 32MP telephoto. So on paper, this device has a proper triple-camera system. Daylight performance is no sweat in any of these cameras. The main lens retains good details and the colours also feel natural. On the ultrawide front too, there’s no noticeable warping or loss even if you want to zoom into the image.

The 32MP portrait telephoto is in a whole different league. In my testing, I got sharp-looking portraits and rarely had to manually adjust the focus or exposure, except under harsh direct sunlight. All the cameras retain their performance indoors as well, but the ultrawide is still a weak spot in low-light conditions.

Smartphone cameras also heavily rely on backend processing, and Realme offers decent corrections in low-lit conditions.

Performance and UI

I’d urge you to keep in mind that this is a phone under Rs. 25,000 before we move to the performance part. It has a Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 from 2022, which is a decent offering at this price. Combined with the 8GB RAM and up to 256GB storage, this makes for a good everyday-use phone.

You can easily play games like BGMI and Asphalt on the Realme 12 Pro, but heavier titles like Genshin cause a rapid battery drain and frequent frame drops. While the phone has a gaming mode to focus resources, there’s just not enough juice for heavy games.

On the other hand, this is a good phone for social media browsing and casual content creation. The 120Hz screen and the 6 Gen 1 chip keep the device running smoothly for social media usage, multitasking, and switching between apps. This chip is also AI-optimized so the Realme 12 should be able to handle any future AI-related Android features too.

Realme 12 Pro comes with Realme UI on top of Android 14. So you get the latest Android along with a couple of neat features. We’ve also done a full video on Realme UI features that will be useful in your day-to-day usage. While the overall experience is pretty smooth, some features don’t work as expected.

For instance, the hide password feature sometimes fails to work. Other than that, you’ll have no problem getting used to the Realme 12 Pro’s UI.

Battery and charging

Images showing phone USB-C port with 67-watt SUPERVOOC charger

Realme shares battery features and charging technology with OPPO, which are some of the best battery and fastest charging phones I’ve tested. Owing to that DNA, the Realme 12 Pro can easily last more than a full day of moderate usage with social media browsing, some camera usage, a little bit of gaming, and then some office work. Even if you use it for watching movies and videos, you’ll get a full day of battery backup which is great at this price.

This phone also charges fairly fast with the SUPERVOOC charger. I got it charged from nil to 80% in under 50 minutes. However, the fast charger still comes with a USB-A cable, which is not future-proof. It is high time the companies switch to USB-C to C charging, making the chargers and cables more versatile.

Realme 12 Pro review: Techlusive’s take

Featured image showing Realme 12 Pro specifications on the phone along with the box

To answer the question in the title, is the Realme 12 Pro the best phone under Rs. 25,000? It has a decent set of cameras that gives you a wide, ultrawide, and dedicated telephoto lens. The processor and RAM combination is powerful enough to handle multitasking and future updates. And the battery management & charging tech is also at par with some of the more expensive phones.

On the other hand, the display isn’t bright enough for outdoor use, some features in the UI don’t work, and the images are still not as good as they should be with the current specs. That said, at Rs 23,999, the Realme 12 Pro is a good option if you want a mid-range smartphone for daily use.

Realme has also bagged recognition for being a reliable smartphone service provider. So you can also expect good after-sales support if you go for this device. As for me, I’ve seen Realme make some bold phones in the past, and the theme seems to slow down with the Realme 12 Pro lineup. It is a great package with decent specs, and should easily last you a couple of years. If that’s something you’re looking for, then this is a good option.

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Author Name | Manik Berry

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