Consumer 5G networks have yet to turn into operational in India. As a feature, 5G first started showing up in premium smartphones, then made its way to the mid-range, and has now arrived in the budget segment. Adding 5G compatibility has increased the prices of many smartphones. In the budget segment, manufacturers have cut a couple of corners in other areas as a way to retain smartphone prices under keep watch over. Processors that enhance 5G modems (add-on or integrated) cost more than 4G ones, which is why manufacturers will have to carefully make a selection how and where they make compromises. Buyers also have to make a decision what they prioritise.
Some manufacturers such as Xiaomi have so far ignored 5G in their low-cost offerings, while others including Motorola and Realme have been trying to squeeze this feature into some of their budget smartphones. Motorola was once probably the most first, with its Moto G 5G, which is to be had at Rs. 20,999. Realme has broken budget barriers, launching the Realme X7 5G (Review), followed by the Narzo 30 Pro 5G (Review), priced starting from Rs. 16,999. Now, Realme is aiming even lower with the Narzo 30 5G, which recently launched alongside the Narzo 30 (Review).
The Narzo 30 5G looks slim and seems to pack in the entire specifications one would want in this price segment. Is it perfect, and is it worth choosing over the Narzo 30?
Realme Narzo 30 5G price and variants
The Narzo 30 5G and the Realme 8 5G offer identical core specifications, but as per the brand, are aimed at different buyers. The Narzo 30 5G differentiates itself from the Realme 8 5G because it is to be had in a unmarried 6GB RAM and 128GB storage configuration, priced at Rs. 15,999. This slots in between the higher two Realme 8 5G variants, which have 4GB and 8GB of RAM respectively, with an identical quantity of storage. The base variant of the Realme 8 5G is priced at Rs. 13,999 and has 4GB of RAM with 64GB of storage.
The Narzo 30 5G’s price and hardware also match the Poco M3 Pro 5G (Review), which starts from Rs 13,999 for the 4GB RAM and 64GB storage variant and also comes in a matching 6GB RAM and 128GB storage variant priced at Rs. 15,999.
Realme Narzo 30 5G design
The Realme Narzo 30 5G feels slim and light, and offers a proper grip with its defined edges around the frame. The smartphone weighs 185g and is just 8.5mm thick. The Narzo 30 5G’s back panel has an identical layout to that of the Narzo 30, but with an off-centred shimmery strip running through the back. The Narzo 30 5G is to be had in two finishes: Racing Blue and Racing Silver. I received a Racing Silver unit for review, and it has a glossy back panel. Build quality is somewhat good. The plastic back panel does not flex or creak, but it picks up fingerprints and is a dust magnet.
The 6.5-inch LCD panel looks sharp and gets somewhat bright outdoors. It has fairly thin bezels at the top, left and correct, but a thick one at the backside.
Realme Narzo 30 5G specifications and software
The Realme Narzo 30 5G uses a MediaTek Dimensity 700 processor, which is similar one you’d get with the Realme 8 5G and the Poco M3 Pro 5G. It features an integrated 5G modem which supports several 5G bands, and offers dual 5G standby. The Narzo 30 5G is to be had in a unmarried RAM and storage configuration, and uses LPDDR4x RAM and UFS 2.1 storage. Connectivity options include dual-band Wi-Fi ac and Bluetooth 5.1. The Narzo 30 5G offers a triple-slot tray with space for two Nano-SIMs and a microSD card of up to 1 TB. The device has a 5,000mAh battery, and supports 18W charging.
The Narzo 30 5G runs Realme UI 2.0, which is based on Android 11. It looks clean and runs smoothly but there are also several preinstalled apps. The entire third-party apps can also be uninstalled whether not needed. The HeyFun app and the local Browser app continuously push promotional notifications, but these can also be silenced in the notification settings.
Realme Narzo 30 5G performance and battery life
The Narzo 30 5G’s display got somewhat bright at 600 nits and was once legible in direct sunlight. Then again, the protective glass, like the back panel, got smudged easily with day by day use. The display offers two screen colour modes to choose between – Mild and Vivid. I preferred the Mild colour preset, which displayed more natural colours, over the Vivid preset, which looked a bit too saturated. With a 90Hz screen refresh rate and a maximum 180Hz touch sampling rate, the display reacted to touches and swipes without any lag while playing games.
The Realme Narzo 30 5G performed timed in most benchmarks, and surprisingly, scored better than Poco M3 Pro 5G in most of them, despite the fact that by small margins. The phone achieved scores of 3,62,007 in AnTuTu, in addition to 574 and 1,777 in Geekbench’s unmarried and multi-core tests respectively. In comparison to the Helio G95 SoC in the Narzo 30, the difference in scores was once minor.
Gaming was once a decent experience on the Narzo 30 5G, with most games running smoothly at default settings. I faced no heating issues, as experienced on the Narzo 30, potentially making the Narzo 30 5G a better choice for gamers. Call of Duty: Mobile worked smoothly but was once limited to the Medium graphics and High framerate settings, with lots of the effects such as Ragdoll, Bloom, and Antialiasing not to be had. Asphalt 9: Legends worked somewhat smoothly with only some dropped frames at the default graphics quality. The game was once playable at Top quality as timed but would struggle a bit when a lot of action was once happening.
The Realme Narzo 30 5G offers good battery life for a phone that is this slim. All over the review period, it easily lasted me a day and a half with general use, which included a couple of hours of streaming video, browsing through social media apps, taking a couple of photos, and gaming. Our HD video loop battery test also showed good results – the phone managed to run for 18 hours and 36 minutes. Charging was once a bit slow in comparison to most smartphones in this segment, with the Narzo 30 5G reaching 28 percent in 30 minutes and 53 percent in an hour. A full charge took 2 hours and 10 minutes.
Realme Narzo 30 5G cameras
The Realme Narzo 30 5G offers precisely the same triple rear camera setup as the more affordable Narzo 30. There is a 48-megapixel f/1.8 primary camera, a 2-megapixel monochrome camera, and a 2-megapixel macro camera. Selfie duties are handled by a 16-megapixel f/2.0 front camera. The camera app’s interface is typical of what’s to be had on other Realme devices that run Realme UI 2.0, with the entire important controls to be had just a tap absent.
Photos captured in daylight came out clean and noise-free, but a bit saturated. Dynamic range was once good, showing a decent level of detail in the darker areas of the frame, but there was once noticeable purple fringing in the brighter areas. Oddly, textures did not look as defined as they did in photos shot with the Narzo 30. The Narzo 30 5G’s camera setup also offers 2X and 5X digital zoom. Cropped photos showed less detail and dynamic range at 2X, while those captured at 5X ended up taking a look like oil paintings. The 2-megapixel macro camera shot decent photos with satisfactory detail, but colours were somewhat different from those of the particular subject. Maintaining the very best distance to an thing the usage of a fixed-focus camera will be difficult, particularly you probably have shaky hands.
Portrait photos taken the usage of the front-facing camera came out sharp and well-exposed, but with below-average edge detection. Portrait photos captured the usage of the rear camera looked much better with more detail but somewhat more saturated colours.
As expected, low-light performance was once not good. Scenes came out timed exposed, but textures were flat even under Road lighting. The rear camera produced unusable noisy and murky photos when shooting dimly lit landscapes. The Night mode’s usefulness was once limited, as it only increased brightness by a small margin, bringing out a bit more detail in the darker areas of the frame.
Video recording on the Narzo 30 5G was once a bit disappointing, even when in comparison to what the Narzo 30 was once in a position to capture. The phone allows for a maximum capture resolution of 1080p @30fps when the usage of the main rear camera, which is disappointing for a smartphone in this segment. The camera took its own candy time to lock focus, so lots of the videos captured all through this review were out of focus and overexposed. In dimly lit scenes, the camera struggled even more to focus and the videos captured looked somewhat murky and unusable.
The Realme Narzo 30 5G is a slim 5G smartphone with a good 90Hz refresh-rate display, great battery life, and mid-level gaming performance. After the usage of it for a week, I used to be not too happy with the average photo quality and the below-average video capabilities of this smartphone. Charging it at 18W was once fairly slow. Even the Narzo 30 delivers somewhat better camera performance and more options for shooting video. Realme has managed to deliver a 5G smartphone with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage for Rs. 15,999, but I expected better.
Whether you will have to get a 5G smartphone presently, it would be worth spending an extra Rs 1,000 to receive the Realme Narzo 30 Pro 5G (Review) instead. At Rs. 16,999 for the 6GB RAM and 64GB storage variant, it offers better value with a 120Hz refresh-rate display, the Dimensity 800U processor, and 30W fast-charging.
Whether 5G isn’t a precedence for your next smartphone purchase, I would recommend the Redmi Note 10 Pro at this price level. It offers a better selection of cameras, a Super AMOLED display and 33W charging, plus a somewhat bigger 5020mAh battery, at the same price. Whether you lean more towards inventory Android, Motorola’s G40 Fusion at Rs. 16,499 (6GB RAM + 128GB storage) is another choice with the same Snapdragon 732G SoC as on the Note 10 Pro, but with a bigger 6,000mAh battery and a water-repellent design.