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realme 11 review: Mid-level pricing for flagship level features

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#realme11

realme 11 arrives at a time when various phone companies have been launching units with must-have features, and yet are within reach of many price-wise. We ask, therefore, if realme 11 is – well – worth considering, and so here’s Upgrade Magazine’s closer scrutiny of the unit.

THE LOOK, THE LOOK

realme 11 has a 6.4” AMOLED screen size, comfortably fitting most hands, which is a necessity particularly for those who can’t be separated from their gadgets. It helps that the bezel isn’t that thick, guaranteeing more space for viewing, et cetera.

At only 7.95mm thick, this is a thin unit. Used to stuffing 6.7-inch smart phones in my pockets, there were times when I worried I’d break realme 11 into two (or at least crack it), though – with that not happening – the unit was actually easier to carry with you.

Weighing 178g, realme 11 is comfy to use for longer periods of time (e.g. think gaming, or movie or reel marathons). Good, too, that even if the unit’s light, it still feels premium (not akin to plastic units).

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At the right side of the unit, there are two buttons – i.e. the power button that also serves as the fingerprint sensor (this read my fingerprint fast, too), and the volume rockers. As a side note related to the fingerprint sensor, you may record more than one fingerprint to gain access to      the phone, which is good for those sharing gadgets.

Located at the left side of realme 11 is the triple card slot – i.e. for two nano-SIM cards, and an extra slot for micro-SD Card support (up to 1TB expandable storage via micro-SD card). The tray is thin, and – when one SIM was placed – I was worried I’d break it into two.

At the bottom are the USB Type-C charging port, 3.5mm headphone jack, and the speaker grill. On the latter (i.e. the speaker), realme 11 boasts of a 200% UltraBoom Speaker, a single downward-firing speaker (said to be “designed to produce louder audio with more clarity both on treble and bass”). In truth, the sound is LOUD and clear (no “basag”/broken sound here), but even when the volume is maxed out, I noticed it doesn’t sound “encompassing”.

At the front, located at the top left portion, is the front-facing 16MP selfie camera, similar to realme 10’s off-center positioning. Many other units out in the market now position the selfie cams this way, but this actually requires getting used to. I was recording for facial recognition and I found it awkward since I kept recording only half my face. But when already used to this, the front cam’s fast capture is worth emphasizing.

At the back of realme 11 are 108MP + 2MP cameras, encased in a circular cutout at the top left part of the unit. That circular cutout is actually pleasant to look at, adding some class to this unit.

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realme 11 comes in two colors: Glory Gold and Dark Glory. The latter was the review unit, and – it must be noted – the material used did not smudge easily.

FYI: The unit came pre-installed with a screen protector, and a jelly case was found in that yellow envelope in the unit’s box. Though you may eventually decide to replace this jelly case with something made of stronger material, this temporarily suffices, considering the thinness and the lightness of realme 11.

USING THE PHONE

Gentle reminder: Be cautious when setting up realme 11 – e.g. there are “Install All” commands you may accidentally press, causing the dumping (for lack of a better word) of not-your-choice and instead forced-upon-you apps.

In any case, setting up was breezy (even faster than realme Pad 2, for instance), thanks to the MediaTek Helio G99 processor. OS used is realme UI 4.0 (based on Android 13), with the unit also boasting 8GB of RAM and 256GB of ROM.

Connectivity-wise, realme 11 can use WiFi (2.4GHz, 5GHz), Bluetooth (Bluetooth 5.2), and frequency bands 2G/3G/4G. That this unit is not 5G-compatible may not be okay for some since it means foregoing some of the 5G benefits. But particularly for those who’d use this unit in places where 5G still isn’t the norm, you’d hardly notice any difference in the speed, latency, et cetera.

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With 90Hz refresh rate , realme 11 was powerful enough for multitasking – e.g. I was editing some of our WordPress accounts (the issue here was the size of the unit, since doing this proved challenging because of the small-ish screen), surfing online, playing random YouTube videos, and browsing Facebook and Messenger all at the same time. No apparent lag was noted, thank goodness.

FYI, I noticed that realme 11 “pushes” some apps, so that, as an example, even when you remove folders “Hot Apps” and “Hot Games” from your screen, in a day or two or three, these folders will just appear on your screen again.

This unit has a 5000mAh battery capacity. Used as a secondary phone, I remembered waiting for the unit’s battery to go flat… and after three days, I was still around 50%.

You can actually charge the 5000mAh battery in only 45 minutes… though only if you use realme’s 67W SUPERVOOC charging solution. But accompanying the unit when bought is a 33W SUPERVOOC adapter. Also: No wireless charging with this one.

CAM OBSERVATIONS

realme 11 has a single 16MP front-facing selfie camera that’s located off-center, at the top left side of the front of the unit. Truth be told, this takes some getting used to, particularly for those whose past and/or existing units have cams located at the to middle part of the front of the units. But it helps that the single front-facing camera is maximized with realme’s Fusion Algorithms and Multi-Facial Focus, both adding a dynamic flare – if you will – to the selfies taken.

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Shots taken inside the Palanan (in Makati) wet market showed clear details, and captured colors well.

The camera seemed to work hard with ECUs (extreme close-ups), with details still there, but colors not as crisp anymore.

For the 108MP+2MP rear/back cams, here are some observations:

  • Outdoor shooting is cool, with the details captured as they should be. But it’s worth mentioning that the color is paler than what’s natural. This is actually “good” for those wanting images not too gritty, so that – when editing – there’s less need to change the brightness of these images before posting online.
  • There are only two zooms – i.e. 1x (the “normal” shot), and 3x. But you can “push” the unit to zoom more (just pinch, of course).
  • If you “push” realme 11’s rear cams, you can go to 20x zoom. Noticeably, though, the quality actually deteriorated from 4.5x onwards – i.e. I still saw the details, thank goodness; but pixelation started happening and became more apparent. Yes, they’re definitely still usable – e.g. for socmed uploads; though if this was to be used for printing (and you’re too exacting), then you may have issues.
  • Shots done in the dark aren’t that satisfying… at least if no flash is used. The darkness, basically, swallowed the images. With flash, though, the shots are more than acceptable.

Shots taken outdoor were at least crisp, even if colors were somewhat saturated.

POWER ON HAND

Realme actually targets younger smartphone users for realme 11, which is understandable considering the assumed use – e.g. socmed, gaming, et cetera. That camera makes the capturing and uploading to, say, Instagram a better-than-okay experience. The MediaTek Helio G99 processor makes gaming a good experience. And that 5000mAh battery means this one won’t just die on you that easily.

But this one’s not just for the young ones; I’d say that for people, no matter the age, who are looking for any unit with mid-level pricing and yet has some flagship level features, then this one is definitely worth considering.

realme 11 (8GB+256GB) sells for PhP13,999.

EARLY-BIRD OFFERS

A. Online Offers

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a. realme Official TikTok Shop
i. Duration: November 9, starting at 8PM (until Nov 17 only)
ii. Discount Offer: PHP 2,000 OFF

b. Live Selling at realme KOL James Afante’s TikTok page
i. Duration: November 9 at 8PM-12MN
ii. Discount Offer: PHP 2,000 OFF

c. realme E-Store
i. Duration: November 9, starting at 8PM (until Nov 17 only)
ii. Discount Offer: PHP 2,000 OFF

d. realme Shopee Flagship Store
i. Duration: November 11, starting at 12MN (until Nov 17 only)
ii. Discount Offer: PHP 1,700 OFF

e. realme Lazada Flagship Store
i. Duration: November 11, starting at 12MN (until Nov 13 only)
ii. Discount Offer: PHP 2,000 OFF

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B. Offline Offers

a. First Selling (Nov 10 to 19)
i. Duration: November 10-19
ii. Free TechLife 4.5L See-Through Air Fryer worth PHP 2,799
iii. All participating stores nationwide

b. Mystery Box Promo
i. Duration: Nov 10-12
ii. Get a chance to win any of the ff:
1. TechLife 800W Power Blender worth PHP 2,599
2. TechLife 2-in-1 Humidifier worth PHP 1,599
3. TechLife Electric Kettle worth PHP 1,299
iii. Select participating stores nationwide

c. 0% Installment Programs
i. Credit Card: Up to 9 months
ii. Skyro: Up to 12 Months
iii. Home Credit: Up to 12 Months

REALME 11 SPECIFICATIONS

DISPLAY
• Screen Type: Super AMOLED
• Screen Size: 6.4″
• Screen Resolution: FHD+ 1080*2400
• PPI: 409
• Screen-to-Body Ratio: 90.80%
• Refresh Rate: 90Hz
• Touch Sampling Rate: 360Hz
• Brightness: 1,000 Nits
• Protection: Corning Gorilla Glass 5

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COLOR
Glory Gold / Dark Glory

STORAGE
8GB+256GB
Expandable up to 1TB

BATTERY CAPACITY
5000mAh

POWER SUPPLY
Charging Wattage: 33W SUPERVOOC

CAMERA
• Rear: 108MP+2MP
• Front: 16MP

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AUDIO
• Speakers: 1
• Audio Ports: 3.5mm Headphone Jack
• Audio Certification: N/A

SYSTEM
• Operating System: realme UI 4.0, Android 13
• Voice Assistant: Google Assistant
• Processor: MediaTek Helio G99

CONNECTIVITY
• WiFi: 2.4GHz, 5GHz
• Bluetooth: Bluetooth 5.2
• Frequency Bands: 2G / 3G / 4G

DIMENSIONS
• Dimensions (LxWxH): 159.9 mm x 73.3 mm x 7.95 mm
• Weight: 178g

IN THE BOX
• realme 11 (1)
• 33W SUPERVOOC Adapter (1)
• Type A to Type C USB Cable (1)
• Warranty Card (1)
• Quick Guide (1)
• SIM Ejector Pin (1)
• Protect Case (1)

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