About a year ago, Realme rinse off Oppo and decide to become a full-fledged smartphone player in its own right. Since then, the company has grown in leaps and bounds and can today be called one of the few credible competitors Xiaomi in India. Indeed, Realme has already climbed to the fourth position in the Indian smart phone ecosystem. With a share of seven percent of the market, Realme's meteoric rise can be attributed to solid products, excellent marketing and an understanding of what the audience demands.
In our own review we have the Realme 3 Pro An excellent option for anyone who doesn't want to handle the ads and a little puzzled experience of MIUI. But before you get the phone in hand, there's a lot more going on behind the scenes.
After the China launch of Realme X, we spent a day through Realme's production facility in Dongguan, China, and met the team behind the devices' cameras.
It will be safe to call Shenzhen the world-renowned manufacturing center.
Shenzhen is known as the Silicon Valley of the East and for good reason. Some of the largest consumer technology brands are based on the city. It will also be safe to call it the manufacturing hub of the world. Combined with nearby Dongguan, a vast majority of smartphones, laptops and consumer products are being manufactured under the supervision of hundreds of thousands of workers. Despite the early last year of Oppo, Realme continues to use Oppo's manufacturing facilities, which is an hour's drive from Shenzhen.
Our tour begins with a look at SMT manufacturing. Short for surface-mount technology, this is where the magic comes and the heart of the phone is compiled. This part of the production process is almost completely automatic and uses sophisticated machines that create four printed circuits (PCBs) at once.
With 47 production lines in one room, and two dedicated to Realme devices, production continues at full steam. Each line can deliver 10,000 PCBs per day. This part of the manufacturing process revolves around the printer line. The process lasts about an hour, as it goes through several stages of pressure and healing.
Before the PCB moves into the mounting process, the operating system is burned to the ROM. As you will see above, the PCBs at this stage are still connected to another four units and are simultaneously undergoing the ROM burning process.
At the end of the line and before moving into the assembly, the PCB is subject to a high-temperature torch that precisely cuts the edges and ensures that there are no rough edges. At this point we get four individual PCBs ready to go into smartphones.
Of course, this doesn't mean that the entire production line is being kept while four motherboards are being manufactured. The entire line is segmented and a fresh batch moves as soon as the first batch is ready to continue in the production process.
Once all the components are attached, there are a round of inspections with both machines and human supervisors working in tandem to ensure that none of the cables are disconnected and that the battery is properly installed!
Quality analysis is a clinical issue involving many tests and even more data logging.
The next part of our tour we brought to the test and quality analysis section of the production facility. You will be referred to the idea that the employees here have many fun-throwing phones all day long and running. Contrary to the rather unscientific testing, we often come across the Internet, which is a very clinical issue with precise tolerances and ongoing data reporting.
300 phones from each lot of 30,000 are offered at the altar of quality testing and analysis. The above can see you an employee testing the USB port on a cell phone. This test is repeated 10,000 times to check for possible failures.
In fact, there are a whole spectrum of tests on which phones are subjected, with some being longer than others. The above is the button test where a charge of one kilogram in the power button hits 100,000 times.
The scratch and shoe test is another interesting one where the phone is well scrapped at a denim surface to see how it adds up. Of course, there is also a drop test that changes the test parameters from 1 to 1.8 meters to test test drops from multiple heights.
Every single test is accounted for and reported to ensure proper data collection. The toggle key is another interesting one that simulates a phone that slips out of your hand and falls into a curb. The tumbler throws the phone at a height of one meter and repeats it until all the test protocols are met.
There is something catastrophic to see how a phone is dropped 40,000 times.
A micro-fall key drops a phone over forty thousand times from a 10-centimeter height. Really, the attention to detail and to simulate as many real-life circumstances as possible is impressive to see from an engineering perspective. Truth be told, there is something cathartical to see how a phone repeatedly falls with mechanical precision.
The tests didn't end there. There are machines that symbolize extreme heat up to 50 degrees Celsius, as well as cool temperatures up to -15 degrees Celsius. The temperature turns within a few minutes and fine-tunes phones through their speed. There are also machines that can simulate extreme humidity as well as dry weather conditions.
Once the tests are completed, individual phones are manually examined for errors and breaks that are properly recorded. The tests ensure quality control, but are also responsible for improving manufacturing processes to reduce the number of phones that may break down.
Later in the day we had the opportunity to join Realme with the camera team. The company has developed quite a bit for itself because of the image capabilities of its hardware. The Realme 3 Pro Capture the best images in the mid-section and the Realme X is ready to kick it at a notch with a renewed focus on low light recordings and noise-free images.
With a team of nearly one hundred engineers and testers in the camera team, it is clear that Realme wants to distinguish the competition. As the primary market for Realme has been India so far, it is not surprising that most of the data for the tuning of images came from India.
Realme's marketing efforts have focused very much on youth and students studying in India. It is the same audience called in to help with research and to refine final image output. For onboard AI algorithms, Realme also works with Indian models and data sets to define color settings. For Realme 3 Pro, the company used an image data set of more than 100,000 images to tune the algorithms. Most of these images came from India.
Not one of them is exclusive to Realme, but it gives us a unique insight into the processes behind the development of the visual power of your favorite smartphone.
Learning the best in the business certainly helped to improve Realme's smartphones.
Talking about camera performance, the engineering team at Realme pointed out how it picked the best camera phones there as a benchmark. The Pixel 3, has become the best benchmark to measure the 3 Pro image display.
While daylight viewing is often easier to vote, low light is where the budget smartphones fail. Like the Pixel's Night Sight, Night Cape mode on Realme's devices has been developed to melt up to eight images to reduce noise, enhance detail in shadows and ensure that highlights are not blown out. As it turns out, learning from the best in the business has certainly helped to improve Realme's camera performance. We have a whole bunch of camera samples in us Realme X hands-on.
While we often take our phones for granted, it is enlightening to see the efforts of hundreds or even thousands of people behind the scenes. From the initial sketches by the design team to the efforts of the various software departments and camera teams, to the constituent workers, it is incredible to see the processes behind the manufacturing of each device. The fact that the glorious glass plate and metal you read this piece is largely composed by another person must be seen as believed.