Realme is a Chinese smartphone company established on May 4, 2018 (National Youth Day of China), by former Oppo vice-president and head of overseas business department, Sky Li. The company was initially set up as a sub-brand of BKK Electronics’ Oppo Mobiles but later incorporated as an independent entity. Sky Li resigned from Oppo to join Realme.
The company started operating from India first with the launch of the Realme 1 smartphone in May 2018. Subsequently, it launched the Realme 2 and Realme 2 Pro smartphones in India which made it one of the fastest-growing brands in 2018, according to research and analysis firm Counterpoint. In the first year of its operations, the company sold mobile phones through online platforms. However, to strengthen its position in the budget and midrange segments, the company sought to start operating in the offline segment in 2019. Besides, the company also has plans to move to other global markets like Indonesia, Mainland China and Taiwan.
To expand its footprints in India, Realme planned to establish around 25 exclusive service centres across India by the end of 2019. It inaugurated its first exclusive service centre in the country’s capital city New Delhi on March 19. The company also planned to expand its offline sales channels to 150 cities in 2019 by partnering with retail stores and multi-brand outlets across the country.
Though the company’s product line-up comprises mostly the budget and midrange smartphones, it is also working on a premium offering with flagship specifications and features that is expected to be launched in India by the end of 2019. The upcoming phone is expected to rival the Xiaomi Redmi K2 Pro, launched in China in May and likely to come to India in June.
Realme smartphones currently use Oppo’s ColorOS, based on the Android operating system, as their default user interface. The company is working on a new user interface, which is also expected to roll out by the end of 2019.