realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

The realme 12+ 5G proves to be one of the hottest smartphones this season. Alongside the Pro+ version, the phone is now available in the country with a starting price of Php 17,990. Design-wise, this smartphone looks similar to the previous realme number series but offers more premium specs and features that could potentially make you decide to upgrade. There's a new SonyLYT camera sensor, an efficient 5G chipset, the latest Android software, and more.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

From the looks of it, the realme 12+ 5G is such a promising smartphone. Join me in this review as we dig deeper into the device's capabilities and ultimately determine who this device is for. Is it a great purchase overall? Let's find out.


The realme 12+ 5G comes with standard yellow box with black accents. It also has the same inserts found in previous releases - jelly case, SIM eject tool, 67-watt power adapter, USB-A to USB-C cable, and some documentations. You can check out our unboxing video via our YouTube channel right after the jump.


  • Excellent Cameras in this segment
  • 12GB RAM option
  • Unique design


  • Easily-scratched frame
  • Vegan leather back could be embossed for better handling


The realme 12+ 5G is another head-turner smartphone from the brand. Continuing last generation's vegan leather backing philosophy, the realme 12+ 5G also combines technology and art. In fact, the phone's backing is designed by Ollivier Savéo, a luxury watch designer who had worked with Rolex, Roger Dubuis, Quentin, and more. This gave the realme 12+ 5G some watch-like inspired elements like the sunburst dial and golden bezel for the camera module.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

We have the Navigator Beige colorway which looks unique and stylish at the same time. As mentioned, we have a vegan leather finish which gives off a matte-silky texture. This panel resists dirt very well and we could also expect that it rejects fingerprints successfully. In fact, the whole candybar construction comes with an IP54 water and dust resistance.

The frame registers to have a silver-ish hue rather than beige. However, it still complements the overall color dynamics; though I think it can be easily scratched. We have a familiar set of ports and buttons - the right side has the power button and the volume rocker, while the top houses the microphone, single slot for secondary speaker, and 3.5-mm audio jack. The bottom is a home to the SIM tray, primary microphone, USB-C port, and the main speaker grille.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

Overall handling of this smartphone is quite good. It is light at 190 grams and thin at 7.87 millimeters. This makes the phone a joy to use. However, I wish this phone has an embossed backing that curves towards the edges. The current design allows the edge of the frame to overpower the vegan leather texture when holding the phone on your hand.


The phone frames a 6.67-inch FHD+ AMOLED display. The panel has 120Hz refresh rate and 240Hz touch sampling rate. Unlike the Pro version, we have a flat display that could reach up to 2000 nits in terms of brightness. This means that you don't have to worry about using this handset outdoors, even on broad daylight.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

The panel is protected with what the company calls "Secondary Tempered High Strength Glass." It could also detect the presence of liquids in the panel and improve its accuracy and sensitivity to taps. The overall display quality is great. We have balanced contrast; and on top of that, the phone's "Sunlight Display" feature automatically improves the contrast based on the user's environment.

The display is also certified with Widevine L1 for full HD playback resolution. However, the screen does not support HDR playback in Netflix. However, there's a Video Color Boost toggle in the display settings which transforms your SDR to HDR; this is limited only to supported apps. The colors are also accurate with enough saturation. This phone is a great streaming companion; it even has a very welcoming viewing angles.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

As usual, you can select your preferred screen color among Vivid, Natural, Cinematic, and Brilliant modes. The refresh rate can also be forced to High and Standard; or you can just choose the Auto Select feature that gives the best refresh rate, balancing a compromise between battery and smoothness.


The realme 12+ 5G is powered by a MediaTek Dimensity 7050 chipset. Our review unit comes with 12GB of RAM and 256GB storage. This combination is powerful enough for your daily smartphone activities.

The chipset is also good for moderate gaming. I play a lot of MOBA titles like Mobile Legends: Bang Bang and got pretty great experiences so far. With MLBB, the graphics settings default to High, as well as the refresh rate. The overall performance of the phone is more than enough for its price, it may not be of flagship level but it does the job very well.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

The realme 12+ 5G do not have heating issues, even in lengthy gaming sessions. It boasts a Vapor Chamber Cooling System that evenly dissipates heat while running intensive apps. In my real-time usage, some sections of the phone could get slightly warm but it does not bother me at all. The heat management adds to a more stable overall performance.

The SIM tray has provisions for one SIM card slot and a hybrid slot for either the microSD card or another SIM. The phone also supports Bluetooth v5.2 and dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/6. In our Geekbench 6.0 benchmark test, the phone tallied 958 single-core and 2374 multi-core scores. In the GPU benchmarks, the realme 12+ 5G gathered 2404 OpenCL and 2405 Vulkan scores.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

The 12GB RAM also made a difference, especially when I'm multitasking and jumping through different apps. However, if the system needs a bigger memory, the realme 12+ 5G could easily use the additional Dynamic RAM feature of up to 12GB. The phone also packs a dual speaker setup which brings a little oomph to the whole multimedia experience. In terms of sound quality, the stereo speakers have well-placed bass and treble.


The realme 12+ 5G packs a 50MP SonyLYT camera with f/1.9 aperture and 26mm focal length. This is a new series of camera sensors from Sony that made their way to the latest realme number series. The sensor has a built-in OIS for more stable shots and more detailed night photos. On top of that, it makes the zoom feature and taking videos very smooth.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

The main camera is coupled by an 8MP f/2.2 ultrawide sensor and a 2MP f/2.4 macro sensor. On the front, the handset packs a 16MP selfie camera. It is capable of 4K video recording at 30fps for the rear camera, and 1080p at 30fps for the front camera.

In optimal lighting condition, the realme 12+ 5G produces amazing shots with stunning amount of details and color accuracy. Speaking of color accuracy, I love how accurate the skin tones register with this camera. Aside from the colors, the dynamic range and contrast are also adequate, making this smartphone one of the best camera phones in this price range.

It also supports 2x In-sensor zoom (52mm focal length) like the previous realme releases. At this point, I wouldn't be surprised to see the photos retain a right amount of details even at 2x zoom; and indeed they did! This was achieved even without using a telephoto lens.

realme 12+ 5G Review: Sample Photo
Sample Photo

realme 12+ 5G Review: Sample Photo: 1x Zoom
Sample Photo: 1x Zoom

realme 12+ 5G Review: Sample Photo: 2x Zoom
Sample Photo: 2x Zoom

realme 12+ 5G Review: Sample Photos: 1x Zoom vs 2x Zoom
Sample Photos: 1x Zoom vs 2x Zoom

The smartphone's low-light performance is also no slouch. Low-light shots are consistently great. This is due to the built-in OIS. Photos retain more details with great contrast and color accuracy. It is also good in exposing the dark areas without overblowing the highlights. Moreover, the phone features a Street mode wherein users get to choose their filters when shooting.

realme 12+ 5G Review: Sample Photos: Low-light and Low-light Portrait
Sample Photos: Low-light and Low-light Portrait

realme 12+ 5G Review: Sample Photos: Low-light and Low-light Portrait
Sample Photos: Low-light

Flipping the device, the 16MP is still a great performer. It produces selfies with adequate sharpness and preserve your skin tones. You can also use the the Beauty modes wherein you can customize some familiar facial enhancement toggles, and the in-app filters. Moreover, the portrait mode employs good subject and background separation.

realme 12+ 5G Review: Sample Selfies
Low-light Selfie vs Outdoor Selfie vs Portrait

Software and Battery

The realme 12+ 5G boots with realme UI 5.0 that's based on Android 14. This brings in features that prioritize security and performance. The new realme UI version also packs more customization features on top of the already popular ones, like creating your own wallpapers and using cool Always-On display presets. The icons are flat; and system toggles are simple and effective.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

The overall user interface is smooth and buttery for the most part. This version of the software still comes with a significant amount of bloatware and pre-installed apps; while you can uninstall some, it's still a chore to remove them one by one. Other notable features include the One-handed mode, Smart Suggestions, Split View, and Flexible Window.

As for the battery, the realme 12+ 5G packs a large 5000 mAh battery. In our real-time use, it could easily last for one day. According to realme, the battery could last up to 77 hours of music playback, and at least 7 hours of continuous gaming.

realme 12+ 5G Review: All-Rounder Smartphone Under Php 20K

The battery also supports 67-watt SuperVOOC fast charging. In our battery charging test, this phone tallied 30% on the first 15 minutes of recharge. It reached 65% in 30 minutes, and 100% in a little over 50 minutes. This charging speed is quite impressive.

Should You Buy the realme 12+ 5G?

The realme 12+ 5G stands out in its segment with its stunning and bold design that's paired with a competitive set of cameras. If these features are important to you, then the realme 12+ 5G would definitely be a great device for your needs. Obviously, it's not the most powerful in its segment; but the Dimensity 7050 is more than enough to handle all your daily tasks. The phone is also great for multimedia consumption.

With that being said, I think that the realme 12+ 5G is an excellent choice for users who are looking for a well-rounded smartphone under Php 20K. Even in general sense, the phone gives good value within this price range. This makes it very easy to recommend.

realme 12+ 5G Specs

  • 6.67" FHD+ 2400x1080p E4 AMOLED display, 0.68mm Secondary Tempered High Strength Glass, 394 ppi, 92.65% Screen-to-Body Ratio, 120Hz refresh rate, 240Hz Touch Sampling Rate, 600 Nits (Typ); 1,200 Nits (HBM); 2,000 Nits (Sunlight Mode) brightness
  • MediaTek Dimensity 7050 (6nm) SoC
  • 8GB RAM + 256GB ROM, 12/256GB
  • Dynamic RAM Expansion of up to 12GB (12GB DRE is only available on the 12GB RAM variant)
  • Up to 2TB expandability via microSD card
  • 50MP SonyLYT600 main camera with OIS + 8MP 112° wide angle + 2MP macro
  • 16MP front camera
  • Dual Stereo Speakers, Hi-Res
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • 5G, 4G LTE
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/6, Dual band: 2.4GHz, 5GHz
  • Bluetooth v5.2
  • realme UI 5.0, based on Android 14
  • Google Assistant
  • 162.95 x 75.45 x 7.87mm, 190 grams
  • IP54 Dust and Water Resistance
  • 5000mAh battery with 67W SUPERVOOC Charge
  • Color Pioneer Green and Navigator Beige
  • Php 17,999 8+256GB, Php 19,999 12+256GB
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