Realme was only created in 2018, but this Chinese upstart has shaken up the mobile industry with a range of unique and often high-specced phones at competitive prices.
That's part in thanks to Realme's connection to Oppo. Realme founder Sky Li was previously an Oppo vice president, and the two companies still share some R&D, engineering, and distribution infrastructure, most obvious in the way that Realme UI is remarkably close to Oppo's ColorOS - no bad thing.
Like Oppo itself, Realme has more recently pushed into Europe and has expanded its product portfolio beyond just phones, to include offerings like true wireless headphones and smartwatches as well.
Realme phones all offer a compelling price/performance balance, usually focussing on folding one or more premium features into a device at a price point you wouldn't expect, whether that's budget phones that surpass expectations, or flagship killers that rival Samsung's greatest.
These are the best phones that the company has to offer, spanning the super-affordable to the cut-price flagship, all tested by us here at Tech Advisor.
Best Realme phones 2021
Realme GT - Best flagship
- Pros: Flagship specs | Striking design | 5G support
- Cons: No waterproofing | No wireless charging
The Realme GT is the company's current flagship, but outside of Realme's lineup you're just as likely to hear it dubbed a 'flagship killer'.
That's because it offers the best of flagship specs at around half the price of some of its rivals - mostly by skipping out on luxury features like wireless charging and waterproofing, and by offering a strong main camera but little photographic versatility.
If you can live without those niceties, you won't find a Snapdragon 888, 120Hz AMOLED display, and 65W charging anywhere for less than this.
Read our full Realme GT 5G review
Realme 8 - Best budget
- Pros: Thin and light | Great value | Surprisingly strong camera
- Cons: No 5G | 60Hz refresh rate | Giant slogan on the back
The Realme 8 sits at the heart of the company's current core lineup, and this budget offering is something of a crowdpleaser.
With solid, all-rounder specs this is a jack-of-all-trades - a phone that doesn't excel at anything specific, but does most things pretty well - especially given the price.
That makes it a great choice for anyone with a limited budget who just wants a phone that works, and works well.
Read our full Realme 8 review
Realme X50 5G - Best mid-ranger
- Pros: 120Hz display | Superb battery | 5G support
- Cons: Mid-range chipset | Slightly old now
The Realme X50 5G shakes up the mid-range market by offering strong specs at a price that undercuts even its best value rivals.
A 120Hz display, the excellent Snapdragon 765G chip, 5G, superb battery life and a surprisingly-capable main camera collectively render the X50 a far better phone than anything you'd expect at this price.
It gives devices like the OnePlus Nord and even the Pixel 5 a run for their money in certain areas.
Read our full Realme X50 5G review
Realme 8 Pro - Best camera
- Pros: 108Mp camera | 50W charging | Thin & light
- Cons: No 5G | Giant logo on back
The Realme 8 Pro is an effort to raise the profile of the company's camera credentials, led by a 108Mp main camera.
Elsewhere you get a thin, lightweight build (albeit with a giant 'Dare to Leap' logo down the back...); a 60Hz AMOLED display; and 50W wired charging.
In practice, it achieves its intended purpose and happens to be a well-balanced affordable mid-ranger in the process, with a killer feature that sets itself apart from the rest of Realme's lineup.
Read our full Realme 8 Pro review
Realme 7 - Older budget option
- Pros: 90Hz display | Attractive design | Great value
- Cons: Average cameras | Replaced by the Realme 8
The Realme 7 isn't quite the best budget phone around right now, but it's still pretty darn close. It looks great, runs fast, and packs a 90Hz display for an astoundingly low price.
We recommend you spend a little extra for more RAM than the base 4GB, but otherwise the 7 offers up strong performance, packed into an attractive design at an affordable price.
The cameras could be better too, but beyond that, there’s not much to complain about here.
The Realme 8 has launched since, and is generally the better buy, but if you can find it cheap the 7 remains a great option.
Read our full Realme 7 review
Realme GT Master Edition - Best design
- Pros: Unique aesthetic | 120Hz display | 65W charging
- Cons: Mixed camera | Middling core specs
The Realme GT Master Edition is a design-focussed take on the flagship GT, prioritising the phone's look and feel over its core specs.
That means you get a slick finish (especially the suitcase-inspired variant by designer Naoto Fukasawa), and the 120Hz display returns to keep the phone looking great in every respect.
The core chipset is the mid-range Snapdragon 778G, which in the base model comes with a disappointing 6GB of RAM - though 8GB is available.
Still, 65W fast charging helps round out the specs and keep this a compelling option, though we'd still go for the standard GT given the choice.
Read our full Realme GT Master Edition review
Realme X50 Pro - Best flagship camera
- Pros: Quad camera | Strong specs | 5G
- Cons: No water-resistance | No wireless charging | Realme GT now better
Realme's first 5G flagship (and second-ever flagship phone) is an impressively affordable device that doesn't skimp on high-end specs and features.
The Realme X50 Pro forgoes aspects like IP water resistance and a thin body but in return sports the powerful Snapdragon 865 chipset, 5G, up to 12GB of RAM, fast UFS 3.0 storage and blisteringly-fast 65W 'SuperDart' fast charging, which delivers 60% charge in just 15 minutes and a full charge in only 35.
Best of all, the X50 Pro costs nearly half that of most top-tier Android flagships on the market.
It's since been supplanted by the Realme GT, but this may still be the better buy if you can find it at a discount - or if you want the X50 Pro's telephoto lens, not found on the GT - though if that's a priority you may prefer the X3 SuperZoom, below.
Read our full Realme X50 Pro review
Realme 7 5G - Best for cheap 5G
- Pros: 120Hz display | 5G support
- Cons: LCD, not OLED | Replaced by Realme 8 5G
Don't mistake the Realme 7 5G as a repeat of the standard model with a 5G modem tacked on. While it shares a near-identical camera setup, practically everything else - from the processor to the display - has been overhauled.
A 120Hz LCD, a huge 5000mAh battery with 30W 'Dash Charge' fast charging and the first phone to boast MediaTek's Dimensity 800U chipset make this an impressively powerful and affordable mid-ranger, and one of the cheapest 5G phones around from any manufacturer.
Read our full Realme 7 5G review
Realme 7 Pro - Best for cheap fast charging
- Pros: 65W charging | AMOLED display
- Cons: Only 60Hz | (Mostly) inferior to Realme 8 Pro
Sure, the Realme 7 Pro is a little pricier than its regular sibling, but it’s not as simple as saying it’s an upgrade in all areas.
The 60Hz display and 4500mAh battery are inferior on paper, while the Full HD screen's resolution is exactly the same. However, it’s a stunning OLED panel as opposed to LCD, while the improved power efficiency means battery life is streets ahead.
65W fast charging is a joy to behold (and is in fact faster than the newer 8 Pro's 50W speeds), while the Snapdragon 720G processor delivers significant performance improvements over the standard model too.
Buy this over the 8 Pro if faster charging matters to you more than a high-performance camera.
Read our full Realme 7 Pro review
Realme 6 - Best bargain
- Pros: Budget | 90Hz display
- Cons: Chunky | Replaced by Realme 7 & 8
While it may have been superseded by the Realme 7 and now 8, the Realme 6 is still one of the best budget phones on the market.
It's slightly chunky size won't be for everyone aside from its successor you'll struggle to find a 90Hz display at this price, not to mention it also comes with decent cameras, speedy performance and solid battery life.
There's very little to dislike, especially when you can now get it for even less than its already-competitive RRP.
Read our full Realme 6 review