Realme GT Neo 3T review: A power-packed deja vu
A smartphone can make you feel a wide range of emotions, from excitement to disappointment but not all make you feel a sense of deja vu quite like the Realme GT Neo 3T. If you have just seen it listed online and were confused with its specifications, then don't worry, you're not alone. The smartphone does eerily resemble the Realme GT Neo 2 on paper. But that's not a bad thing.
Repackaging or repurposing has become a strategy for brands operating in the midrange segment who want to get a little extra life out of their existing hardware. And while it might be a deal-breaker for some, looking at it purely from a consumer perspective, sometimes it can make sense. An older processor can be optimized better and a newer device can have those little quality of life improvements that make it a better smartphone overall.
But not all smartphones are able to do it and these things are rarely captured in the spec sheet. That's why we used the Realme GT Neo 2, err… Realme GT Neo 3T for two weeks to find out what this smartphone is all about and how it compares to the latest devices in its price segment. So, let's get down to the brass tacks.
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Realme GT Neo 3T Design
The Realme GT series has always been flamboyant and innovative when it comes to design aesthetics and the Realme GT Neo 3T continues the tradition with a unique race-flag design on the back which comes to life under the light. Personally, I found it to be the right balance between quirky and stylish. Compared to the Realme GT Neo 3 that comes with horizontal stripes, the newer device is definitely less distracting and still manages to look cool.
The smartphone comes with a polycarbonate back and has quite a nice touch and feel to it, although it's slightly on the heavier side at 195g. It's not a glass back but it definitely does not feel cheap. The back is also quite resistant to fingerprints, which is always a plus. A thing to note is that the smartphone is definitely not comfortable for one-handed usage.
The camera module is an exact replica of the Realme GT Neo 2 and rest of the ports and front display follows the typical Realme schematics with power button on the right, volume rockers on the left and no 3.5mm jack at the bottom. For those not familiar with Realme, its front camera is placed at the left corner, which might take a bit of getting used to.
Overall, the back panel is quite interesting and gives the smartphone a unique look to it, but we feel it could have been made a little lighter for more comfortable usage.
Realme GT Neo 3T Display
The Realme GT Neo 3T features a 6.62-inch FHD+ AMOLED display which looks quite good. The display colors are slightly saturated but personally, I find it quite appealing especially while watching videos or playing games. True-tone fans might be slightly disappointed. Along the same vein, the viewing angles were quite nice and the colors looked crisp. The smartphone also has very thin bezels which adds to the overall experience.
The smartphone also comes with 120Hz refresh rate and a touch sampling rate of 360Hz which definitely benefits slightly while gaming. And even if you're not a gamer, you can always enjoy the smooth scrolling experience on social media apps. The smartphone also has a peak brightness of 1300 nits which means even on a sunny day you can easily use your smartphone and do not have to worry about reading the text or checking out a picture.
The smartphone supports HDR10+ but it does not work on Netflix or Amazon Prime Videos, likely due to certification issues. That means the only place you can experience HDR rich videos is YouTube, which is a bummer. But that one let down aside, the overall display is really good and gives you a good value whether you want to consume content or play games.
Realme GT Neo 3T Performance
The smartphone is equipped with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 5G chipset which was also seen in the Realme GT Neo 2. However, the company claims that the processor has been optimized for better performance and a higher battery life. While we could not compare the two for obvious reasons, I was quite happy with its performance.
The smartphone is definitely fast whether it is the app opening speed, multitasking or just doing RAM intensive tasks like photo editing. It never slowed down for me and was able to handle any task thrown at it.
Coming to gaming, I played a variety of games on the device, from COD: Mobile, Apex Legends, FIFA 23 Mobile, Asphalt 9 and even some Marvel games. I was able to play COD: Mobile at high graphics and frame rates, Apex Legends at ExtremeHD graphics and very high frame rates and FIFA 23 at Ultra graphics and 60 FPS. The game load times as well as response times were pretty fast and I never faced any issues with frame drops. However, it should be noted that the device does not support 90FPS gaming and if you're a competitive gamer, you'd be more benefited from iQOO Neo 6 which does have the feature.
What also added to the gaming experience was the Dolby stereo speakers and the haptic feedback. The speakers in particular were rich and loud, which is missed by many smartphones in the range. The haptic feedback was also very sharp, which added to the immersiveness of the games.
The smartphone runs on realme UI 3.0 and while the operating system is filled with fun customization options, it is also filled with bloatwares. The most annoying of them, which will bombard your device with notifications, can be uninstalled. But there are others which you will just have to tolerate in the device.
Another point to be mentioned is that although it is a gaming device, it is a midrange smartphone and will not be able to survive the strain of professional gaming or for streaming games. If that's what you're looking for, you'll be better served with Asus ROG 5s or the iQOO 9 Pro, but both of them will cost more.
Overall, the OS still comes out as a let down but apart from that the smartphone does not give us much opportunity to complain.
Realme GT Neo 3T Camera
The Realme GT Neo 3T sports a triple rear camera setup with a 64MP primary camera, a 8MP ultrawide lens and 2MP macro sensor. Goes without saying, but the camera module is also exactly the same as the Neo 2. The primary camera takes some really nice shots during daytime. The colors are vibrant which lean slightly to the saturated side, and the detailing is quite impressive. But if you prefer true-tone colors on your smartphone, this will not be possible on this device. In that case, I'd suggest you opt for the iQOO Z6 Pro.
The ultrawide camera performs fairly well in daylight scenarios. But both the cameras take a dip when taking images in low light conditions. The pictures look blurry and there is noticeable noise in those shots. They are still usable, but probably not worth posting on your Instagram. The third is a macro lens which is nothing to write home about.
The front camera performs quite well. And once you turn off the beauty mode, the images look close to natural (still not entirely natural). As with the rear cameras, the daylight performance is significantly better than low light performance. The portrait mode is bang average.
Overall, the Realme GT Neo 3T is not a camera phone and all the cameras give just average performance. If you're looking for a camera-centric smartphone we'd recommend Realme 9 Pro+ instead. Check the snapshots from the camera here.
Realme GT Neo 3T battery
The Realme GT Neo 3T is backed by a 5,000 mAh battery which should last more than a day in most smartphones. However, even with moderate usage that included social media scrolling, watching videos, attending calls and general app usage, the smartphone would not last an entire day. While gaming, the battery life was even lesser. It was a little underwhelming since we thought the smartphone would be more optimized.
However, to somewhat offset the annoyance, the smartphone packs an 80W SuperDart charger that can charge the phone from 0 to 50% in 12 minutes. It takes around 45 minutes to charge fully.
Realme GT Neo 3T verdict
At the beginning of the review, we said that resembling a predecessor is acceptable as long as the smartphone offers value and demonstrates some clear upgrades over it. While the Realme GT Neo 3T does offer a lot of value, we failed to see any significant improvements from the last generation.
The only two noticeable changes are inclusion of an 80W charger and a new design on the back. We hoped for a more battery optimized device but in terms of performance, it does not deliver that. The camera performance is also average and the OS could definitely be improved.
However, without the shadow of the predecessor and ignoring the above mentioned flaws, I found it to be a solid gaming smartphone. It is very fast and can run most games at the highest graphics setting. The speakers and the haptic touch are amazing and the display is bright and vibrant.
So, if you're someone who loves gaming and don't really plan to take a tonne of pictures, then this device is a good option for you. Just make sure to take the charger wherever you go and keep the gaming to a minimum when not around a power source.
- Unique design
- Great speakers
- Battery backup
- Camera performance
- OS experience
Display6.62-inch FHD+ display 120Hz
Rear Camera50MP + 8MP + 2MP
OSAndroid 12, realme UI 3.0
Battery5,000 mAh with 80W SuperDart charging