(Pocket-lint) – Alongside the launch of the Realme GT Neo 3 – the upper-mid-range speedster – the company also launched a more affordable option, the GT Neo 3T.
Taking a leaf out of OnePlus’ book with the ‘T’ branding, the Neo 3T provides a cheaper alternative for those seeking super-speedy charging.
It comes with both an attractive price tag and an attractive look, then, but is this mid-range phone a bit of a bargain or one to avoid?
We’ve had some time to play around with the GT Neo 3T – here are our impressions.
In day-to-day use, the Realme GT Neo 3T feels almost exactly like its pricier sibling, the Neo 3. Given that it’s so much cheaper, it comes as quite a bargain.
The main camera isn’t as good, and you might not be able to brag about having the fastest charging phone on the market, but, in all other areas, the Neo 3T is a solid performer. Particularly if you like a bit of gaming, the 1000Hz touch sampling rate is a real rarity at this price point.
It’s worth considering, though, that last year’s GT Neo 2 offers essentially the same spec, just with a 65W charger instead of the 80W on offer here. So, savvy buyers might want to consider picking up a discounted Neo 2, as it likely offers much of the same experience.
Otherwise, despite the increasingly competitive mid-range market, the GT Neo 3T stands as a serious value proposition that’s well worth considering.
The GT Neo 3 went all-in on the speed theme, with its bold racing stripe design, whereas the 3T has taken a more subtle approach. Okay, so maybe the bright yellow colourway that we’re testing isn’t the most subtle thing in the world, but the checkered flag design, which is only visible in certain lighting, is a nice nod to the general theme without being quite so in-your-face.
This theme extends to the camera surround, which has a small checkered stripe between the two sizable main lenses. There’s a third lens hidden away in the black panel, too, which we didn’t even notice at first, but it’s much more prominent on the white version of this phone.
We quite like this design, even in its loudest yellow and black variant. However, if you do prefer something less brash, it’s also available in Shade Black without the checker pattern.
The rear of the phone appears to be made from some kind of plastic, and the frame is polycarbonate, just like the Neo 3. However, it doesn’t feel cheap or flimsy in any way, and the rear panel is much grippier than the glass back of its more expensive sibling, which made us much more confident using it without a case.
The phone features a USB-C port, SIM card tray, volume controls and a lock button. There’s no expandable storage or headphone socket, which is pretty typical of a flagship, but less common on mid-range devices, and could be a turn-off for some potential buyers.
The display is a definite highlight for us so far – it’s large, bright and vivid with all the contrast you’d expect from a flagship AMOLED panel. The 120Hz refresh rate makes swiping around as smooth as can be, while the blisteringly fast 1000Hz touch sampling rate means it has serious gaming chops, too.
That’s a higher sampling rate than many gaming phones that we’ve tested – even ones that cost double the price.
Hardware and software
- Android 12 operating system; Realme UI 3.0 interface
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 5G
- 8GB LPDDR4 RAM
- 128/256GB UFS 3.1 Storage
- 5000mAh battery; 80W charging
The GT Neo 3T utilises Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 870 processor, and, while this is a last-generation chip, it’s still blazing fast and provides fluid and snappy performance in day-to-day productivity tasks. In practice, we couldn’t really tell the difference between the Neo 3 and 3T when going about our daily business, which generally included responding to messages, scrolling social media and watching videos.