Vivo Nex is the latest flagship smartphone from the company, which is now being introduced for the Indian market. But unlike the OnePlus 6 or the iPhone X, Vivo Nex is a unique flagship. The reason: This one has a full screen display, yes, but there’s no notch. The front is entirely the display and for haters of the notch, the Vivo Nex appears to be the perfect symmetrical solution.
But there’s more with Vivo Nex. The company has introduced a motorised selfie camera as well which pops up when needed. The camera is tucked away inside the phone’s body. Then there’s in-display fingerprint sensor as well. Vivo has also introduced the piezoelectric’ earpiece speaker for calls, which is actually under the display. Overall the phone sports a glass design body as well.
Like any other flagship, priced at nearly Rs 45,000, Vivo Nex also comes with high-end specifications: the top of the line Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, 8GB RAM, 128GB storage, and a battery that is 4000 mAh in size. But how does the Vivo Nex perform in real life? Here’s our review:
Vivo Nex Specifications: 6.59-inches Full HD+ display (2316 x 1080) SAMOLED display with 19.3:9 aspect ratio| Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor at 2.8Ghz | 8GB RAM+128GB storage | 12MP+5MP rear camera with f/1.8 and f/2.4 and 8MP front camera | 4000 mAh battery | Funtouch OS 4.0 on Android Oreo 8.1 | In-display fingerprint sensor
Vivo Nex Price in India: Rs 44,990
Vivo Nex review: What’s good?
Vivo Nex is a flagship like any other thanks to some of the special features. It sports a glass and metal body design. The back has a patterned design, and it looks premium. Of course, all this glass means you better protect it with a sturdy case. In our review unit, Vivo added a rather bulky but sturdy case, which should be useful in protecting the device.
My only problem with the Vivo Nex is the size and the weight. At 199 grams, the Nex is huge. The 6.59-inches display and 4000 mAh battery make this one bulky flagship phone. For some like me, using the Vivo Nex with one hand can be a challenge.
Still the Vivo Nex is a phone like none other, unless of course one puts it next to Oppo Find X, which has a similar full view display with no notch. The Oppo Find X though has motorised cameras on the front and back as well. In Vivo’s case, only the selfie camera is motorised.
Read More: Vivo Nex India launch Highlights
Vivo Nex has a dedicated button on the left side for the Google Assistant. If you press the button while using the camera, it will activate the Google Lens to identify any object, painting, building, etc. On the right side are the volume buttons with the power button below. Vivo Nex continues with the headphone jack as well, which should come as good news to those who cannot bear the idea of phone without one.
The SAMOLED display with its ultra-thin bezels is a delight to use. This is not a 2K display, and the resolut is full HD+ 2316 X 1080, but the colour reproduction is excellent. Be it gaming or scrolling through social media, Vivo Nex’s display works well. For those who love to consume videos on your phone, be it via YouTube or Netflix, then the phone is perfect. The full display really makes a difference in the viewing experience, and in a good way.
On the performance front, I expected no issues with Vivo Nex, given that it comes with flagship level specifications and that remains true. Running multiple tabs on Chrome (more than 30) gaming with graphics heavy games like Nova Legacy, Asphalt 8 or even just playing Lara Croft Run, all worked fine on the phone. The 8GB RAM and 128GB storage space is more than enough for a user’s daily needs.
For those who care about benchmark scores, the Vivo Nex scored close to 2,87,132 for us in Antutu, which puts it right below the Mi Black Shark which is the current leader. The score also puts its ahead of OnePlus 6, Samsung Galaxy S9+, Mi 8 and others on the list. On GeekBench it scored around 8897 in multi-core and 2440 in single-core, which is again well ahead of most flagship phones.
Vivo Nex S has a 12MP+5MP combination. The rear camera is excellent when it comes to capturing details in photos. This is certainly a worthy camera option for the price. Photos, even those taken indoor, looked great, had enough detail. The camera is fast and there’s no shutter lag. My only complaint: the colours seem over-saturated in some instances. For instance, the sky is that extra blue, the grass is a little too yellow in one picture.
The Portrait mode also delivers good results, but it has some flaws as well.
And the selfie camera? Yes the motorised camera looks cool and straight from the future. Thankfully it has a performance to back it up as well. The selfies look sharp, with enough details. However, the Portrait mode in selfies also comes with various lighting options. The only problem: I could not see much difference when using any of those modes.
Vivo Nex’s most impressive feature I would say is the 4000 mAh battery. This should easily last one and a half days with heavy duty usage. It comes with fast charging support as well. In my case, I saw it charge from under 20 per cent to 100 per cent in just over one and a half hours. It is good to see that the Vivo Nex flagship does not compromise on the battery.
The in-display fingerprint scanner also works well. It is mostly accurate, though I had a bit of trouble setting this up. The audio quality on calls is quite good as well, despite the speaker being under the display. The overall audio quality when watching videos is impressive as well.
Vivo Nex review: So what’s not good?
The user interface still needs work as it is confusing and just not as a smooth. The control panel is at the bottom and you swipe up to get there. However, many times, the panel would not come up and I would often end up pressing the in-screen home button more. Plus there are a lot of apps that can be done away with, though given the 128GB storage, space is not a problem. Still Vivo Nex does not come with a microSD slot, for those who care about these things.
The other issue is that Vivo Nex is not water-resistant, which is not great when you call yourself a flagship. The fingerprint scanner under the display was also confusing when I tried to set it up. Too many times I got the message “Finger moved too fast” when setting it up. The third time I tried, it worked as though nothing was wrong. I was not sure what happened, but it was frustrating. The technology is revolutionary yes, but it needs work.
The Portrait mode is still far from perfect. The blur effect can often extend to the edges of the object. In selfies, the edges of my hair were still blurred, and it feels a bit artificial when applied to some situations. I would say the Portrait mode still needs some tweaks and improvements.
Vivo Nex review: Verdict
Vivo Nex costs close to Rs 45,000 in India. Given the kind of features it packs, the price is not surprising. The performance of the device is certainly smooth, and it ticks all the right boxes. My main issue would be the size of the device. The camera’s over-saturation of colours is another problem that needs fixing.
For those who hate the notch and want a clean display with a new cool motorised camera, Vivo Nex is certainly worth trying out. For others, the OnePlus 6 with its 8GB RAM and 128GB variant might seem like a more reasonable option in terms of price.