itel P33 Review: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

At just ₦24,000 and ₦26,300 for the itel P33 and P33 pro, itel continues its quest to make a smartphone available to every Nigerian out there

itel P33 review(2)

All the promise of a budget-friendly device as always but packing more unusual sort of specs, itel, Chinese smartphone manufacturers who offer affordable smartphones in Nigeria and Africa at large has moved to unveil its latest offering in the P-series (I term it PERFECT). The itel P33 is by far the best budget produced by the company just yet and if you are looking for a "HERO" that squares up with giving you large battery and good Android experience, you are in for a treaty on this one.

Although there wasn’t a lot of buzz around the April Product launch of the itel P33 in Nigeria, partly due to other OEM's dishing getting in on the competition - like the emergence of OPPO and Xiaomi in the Nigerian market, the itel P33 is still the best bet for budget consumers. Let's look at the itel P33 review in full.

itel P33 Pros

  • Big Battery life
  • 4,000mAh battery
  • Android 8.1 Oreo
  • 5.5-inches screen with multi-touch functionality
  • AI power master for smart battery saving
  • Camera shooting modes such as Portrait, Pano, HDR and Pro

itel P33 Cons

  • No fast charge
  • No 4G connectivity
  • A single GB of RAM
  • Poor speaker positioning
  • Poor design

itel P33 Overview

itel P33 review(1)

The Power-33 smartphone is the very latest iteration from itel and no doubt a huge upgrade from the P32 device and generally focused on putting as much battery power in your hands as possible at a budget price. It comes with a 4,000mAh battery which gives sufficient endurance for several days.

Though itel owes no reasonable excuse for the MediaTek SoC and a single GB of RAM ported on the P33 device, we only have to look forward to the lift-off offered by Google optimised Operating system, Android Go Edition. At a price of ₦24,000 and ₦26,300 for the P33 and P33 plus, itel gives a good Android experience with just a couple of caveats but first-time or budget smartphone users should be okay with this.

itel P33 Design

I don't know why, but itel, just like their many counterparts in the low-end smartphone market, shamelessly continues to use cheap design materials for low budget phones. It's understandable, customers ain't going to break the bank for these smartphones but, come off it, consumers and the smartphone industry at large have come to expect more from these smartphones.

They don't need a telling the midrange and entry smartphone section is already flooding with flagship grade features. Recall, Xiaomi made a huge entry into the Nigerian market with two of their budget Redmi devices - the Redmi 7 and Redmi Note 7 smartphone whilst OPPO have a flagship camera offering for Nigerians available already.

The P33 device has a plastic design in its stride which incorporates all the usual elements that have almost become mandatory on any smartphone; the selfie camera, speaker, LED flashlight and light sensors inhabit the thick top bezel.

At the back of the P33, you get a vertically arranged dual camera setup - am happy for that. The LED flash fits on the bottom of the camera modules to complete the optics department. There is also the fingerprint scanner which lies in a natural position in the top middle part of the phone, though the positioning of the single loudspeaker at the bottom left corner of the back is just one of the no-no they got all wrong.

The volume rockers and textured power button are housed on the right edge with the micro USB port and microphone occupy the bottom edge while the top edge is home to the 3.5mm audio jack - why bring it down there!

Itel P33 review

Fair to say the itel P33 device is a really powerful phone with the budget it's main focal offering but its design material doesn’t just do enough justice.

Itel P33 Display

itel P33 offering of a 5.5-inches screen size device with multi-touch functionality and packing an elongated display with an aspect ratio of 18:9 just about allows the smartphone to lie comfortably in the hand. It also has an HD resolution of 720×1440 with sharp appearance, not your best go but definitely your best budget-alternative.

The viewing angles on the itel P33 are not that great but forgivable at this price point. However, you get an aspect ratio of 18:9 which is great for viewing content on social media networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

itel P33 Battery


The P33 is the most recent device in the itel Power series could have done no wrong with it basically focusing on powerful battery but not compromising on other features as we have come to know the company from times immemorial. The 4000mAh heavy battery might not be the heaviest we have come to see from itel considering we were treated to a 5,000mAh showing on their S-series but with any people fed up with charging their smartphones every time, the P33 sure ticks all the boxes in this section asides one.

There's no fast charge!


The company's promise of 80 hours of uninterrupted power on moderate usage after a full charge on the 4,000mAh battery of the itel P33 is very much believable thanks in part to the Android Go power efficiency and AI power master but, how you leave the fast tech charging out of such heavy battery beats my imagination.

They might point to possible 70% of juice left after a day usage but what then happens when the battery finally runs down? Probably, also take the entire day off charging it up then. You will not find as many devices with such power on the market, at least not at this price but itel seriously need a reality check about introducing this on their future devices.

itel P33 Storage and Performance


Storage is a major determinant during a smartphone purchase given how much content people want to store in these companion handheld devices. itel, therefore, headed to consumer warning by expanding the onboard storage from 8GB for the P32 to now 16GB on the P33.

However, their stance at leaving the RAM at just a single 1GB still baffles even the non-techy. The expanded storage means more photos, videos and files can be stored on the itel P33 and you also get the option to expand the storage via a dedicated microSD card of up to 32GB.

Also, the itel P33 is not your gaming type of phone! While it does everyday tasks of browsing, social media usage and others pretty well, it doesn’t hold well with over-demanding apps and games like Asphalt Nitro and FIFA 19 even though you get little glitches and lagging here and there on games like Subway Surf, Zuma Delux and the rest.

The only solution to achieving the ultimate result and enjoy a great performance on the P33 device is that you install light versions of the apps. For example, instead of using the main Facebook app you might resort to the Facebook Lite apps instead as these lite apps won’t put so much stress on the already low resources of the itel P33.

itel P33 Software and UI

The major takeaway from this awesome device is that it boots the Go edition of Android 8.1 Oreo as this has been fully customised to deliver stellar performance on low spec devices like this. That means, issues like the 1GB RAM allocation are treated squarely and almost goes unnoticed.

While the itel P33 comes with no sort of app drawer or arrangement as usual with all the apps displayed on the screen, you might turn to our many Launcher clues on the blog to have one installed, ready and running immediately.

itel P33 Camera

itel P33 Panorama
You were never going to get a triple camera offering just as in the Nokia PureView or dedicated lenses as in the Infinix S4 but the P33 sure offers more than its predecessor in the optics department.

Dual rear camera setup is made available for enhanced photo experience with the 8MP + 0.8MP sensors at the back taking care of all the rear photo needs. The 8MP is the primary sensor while the 0.8MP sensor helps with the depth sensing with the two ably assisted by a single LED flashlight which adds a bit of life to night shots.

**Were you probably thinking Night mode?

itel P33 review(2)

There is also the offering of a basic 5MP selfie-centric camera with fixed focus sensor which handles the front-camera task and is aided by a single LED flash to illuminate dark environments. The P33 supports shooting modes such portrait (which blurs the background), Pano (great for taking wide landscape pics), HDR and a Pro mode for manual settings.

Photo and video quality on the P33 are obviously average, to say the least, but, they look better compared to phones at the same price with the Night shots bearing colours that tend to be washed out in very bright light. However, the itel P33 promises you a couple social media likes and follows as you will never be lost in space. Joking!

itel P33 Sensors

The P33 jumps on the facial recognition trend with the availability of sensors to now unlock your itel device with the face and even the fingerprint sensors to take pictures and receive calls. The rear-mounted fingerprint will be the most used for many users since it lies in a more natural position where the index finger easily reaches.

While the facial recognition on the itel P33 is a welcome upgrade, reports are that it is a bit slow compared to other devices offering the same tech. There are complaints, the front camera enabled face to unlock on the itel P33 took over 4 seconds to unlock, however, the very welcome note is the Liveness mode feature which you can use to prevent face unlock using your still photo by stalkers.

**Which means, you need to blink when using face unlock!

itel P33 review Con-Cluesion

Just as you cannot just go out and get the iPhone 4 partly due to its size, o the non-techy out there, if not for just any reason to get excited about the itel P33, the 5.5" screen will make a deceptive impression to fams you're using something great - say the Infinix S4 as they all come in similar colour variants. Try it!

You necessary don't and shouldn't need breaking the bank to get your first smartphone, after all, Huawei still makes something in these nature - check the Y5 Lite but recommendations are that itel needs to switch up things like the single GB of RAM to something more appealing. Also in a world where internet speeds really matter, the absence of 4G on the device is a no-no.

The cameras are a great upgrade from the P32 and there is enough storage to house your GOT series in case you feel like going back to them after cinema showing. The battery is no doubt the most excellent feature of the P33 but again, asking for a fast charge on a budget pricing as this isn't suicidal in any way. Or is it?

At just ₦24,000 and ₦26,300 for the P33 and P33 pro, itel continues its quest to make a smartphone available to every Nigerian out there and their latest offering is no doubt for first-time smartphone buyers, buyers looking for a phone with a strong battery and those just looking for a cheaper alternative which doesn’t compromise smartphone experience (a lot).

In an already expanding world of tech and mobile innovations, we call only say the itel P33 smartphone is indeed One Step Forward, Two Steps Back!

Where To Buy itel P33 Smartphone

Jumia Nigeria |from ₦24,000 Click to View Price Offers!

Jumia Kenya |from Ksh6,716 Click to View Price Offers!

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Trillionclues — Tech Reviews and Budget Deals: itel P33 Review: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back
itel P33 Review: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back
At just ₦24,000 and ₦26,300 for the itel P33 and P33 pro, itel continues its quest to make a smartphone available to every Nigerian out there
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