Realme is all over the place with smartphones in every price segment you can think of. Realme Narzo 30A is a budget-friendly smartphone from the Narzo 30-series with prices starting as low as Rs 7,999/-. It has a combination of a large battery, fast charging speed, decent cameras, and a powerful entry-level processor among others.
Here’s a complete hands-on review on Realme Narzo 30A that you should read before deciding whether to buy it or not.
Prices in India, Variants, Availability
Realme Narzo 30A is a budget smartphone and comes in a budget as said. The device is priced at Rs.7,999/- for its 3GB+32GB variant while the higher 4GB+64GB variant is up for sale at Rs.8,999/-. Choose between Laser Blue and Laser Black colour variants while buying Narzo 30A on Flipkart. You can avail a 10% on using Citi CC/DC up to Rs 1,000/-, 5 per cent unlimited cash back on using Flipkart Axis Bank CC among others.
Specs at a glance
Before we talk in detail about the Realme Narzo 30A let’s see what the on-paper specs look like?
- Display: 16.54 cm (6.51 inch) HD+ Display
- Processor: MediaTek Helio G85
- Storage: 3GB/32GB, 4GB/64GB
- Software: Realme UI v1.0 (Based on Android 10)
- Rear cameras: 13MP + 2MP
- Selfie camera: 8MP
- Battery: 6000 mAh, 18W QuickCharge
- Weight: 209g
- Dimensions: 164.50 x 75.90 x 9.80 mm
Design and Build
Realme Narzo 30A has a rather different design when compared to its predecessors. Instead of an all-plain back panel or an all-textured back panel, Narzo 30A has both. Its top one-third section is plain while the bottom two-thirds section has diagonal lines passing through it creating a surface for easier grip. Of course, it is plastic but with the sort of dual pattern, the back panel looks good.
You get a nice fit squaricle camera setup on the top-left corner and a circular-shaped fingerprint scanner just beside it. A not-so-big Narzo branding lines up where the plain section ends and that’s all.
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Narzo 30A has slightly curved edges that make it easy to hold. However, the phone is huge and thus, you will literally have to stretch your fingers to reach the upper sections of the display. Now that we are discussing the display, it is huge with thick bezels around the edges. The chin is sufficiently large as well which is something you will have to compromise with thanks to the price point.
There’s a waterdrop-shaped notch on top with a tiny grille on the topmost extremity which is for the earpiece. You get a power button and volume rockers on the right and a SIM card slot on the left. At the bottom, you get a 3.5mm headphone jack, a primary microphone, a USB-C port, and a bottom-firing loudspeaker.
Realme Narzo 30A sports a 6.5-inch IPS LCD panel with 720 x 1600 pixels with an aspect ratio of 20:9. The display is rated to get 470 nits of typical brightness while peaking at 570 nits on auto max mode.
Well, it is huge and there’s no second thought about it. The display has a standard 60Hz refresh rate with HD+ IPS LCD panel which although may not sound the best but given the price point, it is worthy. Realme claims that the display is 88.7-per cent when compared to the screen-to-body ratio.
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The colours on the display are vivid albeit it falls in the scope of an LCD panel. Colour saturation is okay and the colour shift on Narzo 30A is apparent when viewing the display at an angle. However, you get a good-quality display without spending a fortune on it. Narzo 30A offers a much better viewing experience which is what makes it a must-try.
Unfortunately, there’s no Widevine L1 certification which means you will have to miss out on the high-definition content on popular OTT platforms. You will have to view SD content on these platforms and still, I wouldn’t say that it is not a bad deal considering the price tag.
As far as the viewing experience is concerned, I loved the huge display. It is great for gaming and watching movies among others which is something I usually do on smartphones and I bet most people do it.
Realme narzo 30A is paired with a gaming-oriented MediaTek Helio G85 processor which is a 12 nm-based chipset. It has eight cores clocked at 2.0GHz max frequency for two high-performance Cortex-A75 cores along with six 1.8GHz Cortex-A55 cores. The GPU on top is a Mali-G52 MC2. Further, it has 3GB/4GB RAM and 32GB/64GB eMMC 5.1 storage plus, there’s a dedicated microSD card slot.
If your daily smartphone usage is a mix of a bit of gaming, social media, YouTube, and so on, Narzo 30A won’t disappoint you. When I ran benchmark tests on the device, it received 2,04,869 points on AnTuTu, 363 on single-core, and 1,299 points on multi-core tests on Geekbench 5 among others. These may not be the best scores out there but given the fact that you are using a G85 SoC on a budget phone, the scores are enthralling.
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Moving on, I play a lot of battle royale games and could stop myself from testing out high-graphics games on Narzo 30A. This included playing Call of Duty Mobile although the graphics settings were low by default. I ended up playing a session of 20 minutes with a little bit of stuttering here and there which is okay for a smartphone with this chipset. Luckily, the phone didn’t turn into a hot piece of brick and instead, it warmed up a bit but it’s acceptable.
Unlike its siblings, Realme Narzo 30A arrived with Android 10-based Realme UI 1.0. Depending upon when you read it, the Chinese smartphone maker could have upgraded it to Realme UI 2.0 based on Android 11. It is old skin although it is easy to use, lightweight and powerful. With Narzo 30A, you get a lot of bloatware to take care of but hey, you can’t uninstall all of them as only some will let you uninstall them. You get a tonne of features w.r.t. Both Android 10 and Realme UI 1.0 which makes a lot of sense.
Realme Narzo 30A is equipped with three camera sensors. This includes a front 8MP shooter with f/2.0 aperture, 1.12micrometer pixel size. On the rear, the device has a 13MP primary sensor with f/2.2 aperture, 1.12micrometer pixel size with PDAF, and a 2MP monochrome sensor with f/2.4 aperture to complete its rear dual camera setup.
It goes without saying, cameras have become an integral part of our lives when we constantly keep a note of what’s happening either by taking photos or videos. Realme Narzo 30A gives you three camera sensors to play with.
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Point to the subject at daylight and you got some impressive photos for its price point. The shots I clicked came out good at a glance. Once you start magnifying the photos, you will see a lack of sharpness which is apparent when viewing text in an image. Dynamic range and colour reproduction are average. The white balance on the primary cam does wiggles a bit at times although a Chrome Boost feature on Realme Narzo 30A tends to compensate for it a bit if not all.
The secondary cam on the rear camera setup is just a monochrome sensor. Its job is to capture images with a monochrome or B&W filter on top of it. I found out that the background separation on using portrait mode is good although there are still some ideas that can use some improvements.
There’s a night mode too that captures average images that you can use to bring out more details and sharpness to the photos captured in low-light conditions. I have seen that the noise reduction isn’t that great and the focusing speed is slow but that’s pretty much the price you pay for a budget smartphone so I wouldn’t be shocked or surprised with these shortcomings.
Overall, I am not totally disappointed with the camera setup but it could have been better and especially the night mode.
Finally, the 8MP selfie shooter is a staple when it comes to selfie shooters on a budget-grade smartphone. The 8MP shooter captures quality shots at daylight or when the light is abundant. Facial detailing is adequate so don’t expect it to go full beauty mode unless you want it to. The portrait mode on the front is well-moulded too and has good edge detection although it goes iffy at times that’s okay.
Realme Narzo 30A arrives with a hefty 6,000 mAh battery that should last for two days straight. If you are a movie marathoner, you would just need enough resilience to watch an entire Harry Potter movie series at one go and still have some juice to post about it on social media.
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With that, you get an 18W fast charging which is faster, and yet it will take around 2 and half hours to juice it up to its full capacity. Does it seem like a lot of time? Well, it is a budget smartphone and 18W is still better than the usual 10W charging technology used by many other competitors.
Audio, Connectivity, Biometrics
There’s an earpiece on top for calls. You get a bottom-firing loudspeaker which is decent. However, the speaker lacks depth and it is just average. But hey, you are not paying a premium for it so that makes sense. Plus, there’s a 3.5mm headphone jack for a good audio experience when you pair your earphones with it.
Well, what you get with Realme Narzo 30A is all sorts of assortments. You get A-GPS and Glonass for navigation, Bluetooth v5.0 with LE and A2DP, and Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac with dual-band support. There’s no NFC mounted on the device. You do get a USB-C port for data sharing and charging which is a must-have.
Narzo 30A arrives with Dual 4G SIM support. I have tried both Vi and Jio 4G on Narzo 30A and it turns out it is okay. There’s nothing extraordinary about the connectivity onboard the device. But network reception and call quality are decent so you shouldn’t worry about it.
There are a few security mechanisms in place on-board Realme Narzo 30A. This includes the usual PIN and Pattern lock. You get a rear-mounted capacitive fingerprint scanner which is snappy and works extremely fast. It is accurate as well which makes it the first preference for the majority of users. You also get face unlock with Narzo 30A that works reliably as well although an FPS is far secure.
Pros & Cons
- Massive 5000 mAh battery
- Helio G85 gaming chipset
- 18W fast charging + reverse charging
- 13MP AI triple camera setup
- Triple card slot
- Fingerprint sensor
- Bulky smartphone
- 720-pixel display
- No Gorilla Glass protection
I’d say that well in advance, don’t expect it to make mid-range devices feel shy of letting down flagship devices. With that being said, the Narzo 30A is a budget smartphone with a price tag starting at just Rs 7,999/-. The device packs in a decent performance, humongous battery, a USB-C port which is a welcome feature on a budget phone among others. It has some misses too such as camera performance and the design isn’t that attention-seeking as well. So, if you are looking for a budget phone with decent performance, say hello to Realme Narzo 30A.