Hearty congratulations to Android manufacturer Realme for being the first to clone the iPhone 14’s Dynamic Island. It was a tough six months, but everyone at the Chinese OEM (a subsidiary of BBK, just like OnePlus/Oppo) worked together and made this generic product.
The Realme C55 launched in Indonesia for around $195 and sports a new “Mini Capsule” UI. When it’s time to display a specific type of notification, this phone has two black bars that shoot out from the front camera lens, displaying more information than you’d normally get in a single status bar icon. It looks exactly like the iPhone 14’s new Dynamic Island notification space. While the dead space on the iPhone’s screen is due to the fact that it has some FaceID sensors in it, there’s no new hardware here (that will take a bit longer to copy), just a normal front camera that turns into a giant pill.
Apple’s end-to-end control over the OS and app ecosystem means all sorts of apps use the Dynamic Island notification motif, but Realme is just an Android manufacturer making an Android skin, so it looks like it’s the one and only message that appears in the “Mini Capsule” is your battery status. Plug in the phone and you’ll see some charging stats. When the battery is low, the pill will be outlined in red and alert you that your phone is running low. Realme also has plans for an update that will show a pedometer and data usage.
The rest of the phone isn’t much to write home about – this is still a budget phone. Specs include a 6.7-inch, 90 Hz LCD screen, 6 GB RAM, 128 GB storage and a 5000 mAh battery. An additional tier of 8 GB RAM and 256 GB storage is also available. The SoC is a MediaTek Helio G88 – a 12 nm chip with two Cortex-A75 CPUs, six Cortex-A55 CPUs and an ARM Mali-G52 GPU. It’s not all bad in budget land, as you get a headphone jack and a MicroSD slot. There’s also a fingerprint reader on the side and the phone comes with a surprisingly modern Android 13.
The body of the device adds to the “counterfeit iPhone” look with a flat metal band that wraps around the sides, much like an iPhone 4 or 14. The back is where things get a little different, with two large camera bumps around two budget cameras sensors, and the yellow version of the phone has a neat iridescent back.
This may be the first iPhone 14 clone, but it won’t be the last. Next in line at the photocopier is Huawei, which is rumored to have a counterfeit Dynamic Island lined up for the Huawei Nova 11. The phone is due out in the first half of this year, assuming Huawei has one finds the chips.
Frame image by Realme