Realme 1 vs Redmi Y2: Which Budget Smartphone Offers Better Value?

It is surprising how much budget smartphones can offer these days. About a year back, face unlock was a feature exclusively for the most expensive phones in the market. Now, one can get the face unlock feature on phones even below Rs 10,000. It's not as precise though.

Two such examples are the Redmi Y2 and the Oppo RealMe 1. The face unlock feature is not all they have.

The sub-Rs 10,000 category in India already has some fierce competitors. Now Chinese phonemaker Oppo has declared war on rival Xiaomi with its latest Realme 1. We will tell you which of these budget smartphones is better value for money.

Design

Design is where the Oppo Realme takes it home. With its glass back and minimal bezels, the Realme 1 looks much better than the Redmi Y2 that tries too hard with its metallic paint job on a polycarbonate body. Since we are in the times where lesser bezel area looks better, the Redmi Y2 still holds very prominent borders, making it look obsolete.

Another thing that works in favour of the Realme 1 is its size. The Y2, with its 5.99-inch screen and thick bezels, is too big and gets difficult to use with one hand while the Realme 1 is easier to use with one hand, given the more compact packaging and small bezels. However, the glass body is a smudge magnet and will slip from your hands very often.

The diamond finish on the Realme 1 is also something that makes the phone stand out and makes the phone look premium.

Performance

The Oppo mobile phone is powered by a 2.0 Ghz MediaTek Helio P60 chipset and comes in three RAM options – 3 GB, 4 GB and 6 GB. There is no lag between switching apps, but majority of the RAM is used by the operating system. The phone comes with Android Oreo 8.1 out of the box.

From a gaming perspective, the Realme 1 comes with an acceleration feature that optimises the phone for a better gaming experience. However, it did slow down at times, especially while playing heavy games like PUBG, Need For Speed No Limits and FIFA 18.

RedMi Y2 on the other hand, comes powered with a 2.0 Ghz Snapdragon 625 processor with two RAM options - 3 GB and 4GB.

Although the Redmi Y2 switches apps seamlessly, the touch sometimes freezes when you are switching applications rigorously. 

The Y2 also comes with Android Oreo 8.1 out of the box. There are two storage options – 32GB and 64GB.

Display

The display on the Redmi Y2 is quite good, although the resolution could have been better. The 2160 x 1080 full HD resolution of the Realme 1 outperforms the Redmi Y2’s 1440 x 720 HD+ resolution. The Oppo phone’s display seems brighter as well and the automatic brightness works better.

What else works in favour for the Realme is the bezel. Yes, the fact that it has thinner bezels also makes its display more intuitive as you get to see more content and less screen.

All in all, the colors on both the phones are sharp and both displays are easy to read, but the resolution and the display gives the Realme an upper hand.

Camera

Shot on Redmi Y2
Shot on Redmi Y2
Shot On Realme 1
Shot on Realme 1

The Realme 1 comes with a single camera while the Redmi Y2 comes with dual sensors.

The camera on the Realme 1 is a bitter-sweet experience with its AI powered 13MP rear camera and 8MP front shooter. Not opting for a dual camera in these times is a big miss from Oppo, but the company claims the AI integration within the camera makes it better.

Oppo claims the Realme 1 can recognise 296 facial points, to add detail to photos.

The Realme 1's primary camera captures brilliant images of objects at a far focal length, but doesn’t work as well in low light.

The camera has a lot of features incorporated within, with a selfie bokeh mode and a manual mode called the ‘Expert Mode’.

The images aren’t exactly breathtaking but if you aren’t into smartphone photography, this should work just fine for you.

Xiaomi’s Redmi Y2’s camera offers a lot more, it comes with a 16MP front camera with integrated AI and a flash for low light selfies. It uses a dual camera setup, with a 12MP primary sensor and a 5MP secondary depth sensor.

The Y2 also uses pixel binning technology which essentially combines multiple pixels to improve photo sharpness and quality. 

The front camera has also been given a portrait mode on this one, which works decently. Edge detection, however, is not as good.

The camera setup is similar to the one on the Redmi Note 5 Pro. The camera works well, captures details and colours are vibrant even indoors. The low light pictures are also quite good, definitely better than the Realme 1 shooter. Xiaomi has also used AI for this camera, but it is not evident during the usage.

Battery

The Redmi Y2 has a 3,080 mAh battery while the Realme 1 has a 3,410 mAh battery. However, the backup on the Y2, which has a smaller battery is substantially better. After a day’s moderate usage, the Y2 still had enough juice to go on for at least a few hours. On the other hand, the Realme 1 is quite disappointing in terms of battery life. You will have to save on battery to be able to make it work for more than a day.

Verdict

Both the phones offer enough features within Rs. 10,000 that we couldn’t have expected to get in five times the price less than a year back. However, both have their own pros and cons.

If you are looking for good looks and a better overall performer, the Realme 1 is the better choice for you.

But if you are a selfie lover and want a good camera within a tight budget and longer battery life, the Redmi Y2 is the one you should go for.

All in all, both are packed with features and are very capable for their price point.

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