Vivo V11 Pro review: Following in the footsteps of the Oppo F9 Pro, the Vivo V11 Pro has finally arrived in India, opting for a waterdrop notch and gradient design. Vivo V11 Pro is essentially the replica of its Vivo X21 with some minor differences here and there. But are the design talks enough to justify the existence of Vivo V11 Pro for the company? We found out in our review:
Vivo V11 Pro features and specifications
6.41-inch (2340×1080) Full HD+ AMOLED display | Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 processor | 6GB RAM | 64GB expandable storage | 12MP+5MP rear cameras | 25MP front camera | 7.9mm thickness | Funtouch OS 4.5 over Android 8.1 Oreo | 156 g | 3,400mAh battery | 4G VoLTE
Vivo V11 Pro review: What’s good?
When I took the handset out of the box for the first time, I was surprised to see its design bearing a striking resemblance to that of Vivo X21. Vivo seems to be following in the footsteps of some of the big daddies of the smartphone industry like Samsung and Huawei in streamlining its design and form factor.
On top of that, it features an in-display fingerprint reader. Vivo V11 Pro happens to be the third smartphone by the company to offer in-display fingerprint reader after Vivo X21 and Nex. I am pretty sure Vivo is going mainstream with its in-display fingerprint reader (no matter how far from perfect it is at this point- but more on that later).
It seems like the trend is slowly moving towards a new waterdrop notch and gradient design. After the Oppo F9 Pro recently unveiled in India focusing extensively on this new kind of design, the Vivo V11 Pro has come out with a similar design. I got a Starry Night variant for review. But it’s also available in Dazzling Gold colour option.
Vivo V11 Pro is undoubtedly huge for one-handed use, which is often the case with smartphones these days. It offers a microUSB 2.0 port, a primary microphone, speakers and a 3.5mm headphone jack on the bottom. Up top, there is a secondary mic for noise cancellation. Vivo V11 Pro is a dual-SIM phone with a dedicated microSD card slot for storage expansion up to 256GB.
Up front is a 6.4-inch Super AMOLED screen with 2,340 x 1,080 pixels Full HD+ resolution. It is protected by a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass 3. It’s a FullView display with remarkably thin bezels. The display is fairly bright with good colour reproduction and wide viewing angles. I have no major complaints about the design and display being receptive to fingerprint smudges beyond a certain limit.
Vivo V11 Pro gets its grunts courtesy of Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 SoC paired with 6GB RAM and Adreno 512 GPU for graphics. Multitasking as well as day-to-day performance go well on this phone. And the best part, it doesn’t heat up.
One thing I found remarkable about the Vivo V11 Pro is the camera. It features a 12MP primary sensor (f/1.8) on the back accompanied by a secondary 5MP (f/2.4) depth sensor for portrait shots with bokeh effect. It has dual-pixel autofocus, which claims to capture more details improve camera performance in low light condition. I must say, Vivo has improved its camera game significantly. Pictures come out exceptionally well, and they are mostly on par with the ones on flagship phones.
Vivo V11 Pro is among the very few phones I have used that capture accurate colours (even in a low light condition), which is impressive! Generally, phones in this range tend to have somewhat inaccurate white balancing further resulting in washed out colours. But thankfully, that is not the case with the V11 Pro.
In a low light conditions, it gets the contrast almost right without sharpening the image. During my usage, some lowlight pictures also ended up a bit oversaturated. But they don’t look bad. In natural lighting conditions, I had nothing much to complain about the camera.
Vivo has integrated Google Lens in the camera this time around to let users obtain information about the objects being shot. This is certainly an improvement over the Vivo X21, which misses out on a Google Lens support. As far as video recording is concerned, it can record maximum 1080p videos at 30 frames per second (fps).
Vivo V11 Pro houses a 25MP selfie camera with f/2.0 aperture. Selfies in natural lighting conditions especially those in portrait mode look stunning and they retain details to a great extent. Face unlock feature also uses the selfie camera for unlocking the device. Face unlock works blazing fast and it works fine even in dimly lit conditions, courtesy of the infrared assist.
Vivo V11 Pro runs Android 8.1 Oreo with the company’s Funtouch OS 4.5 custom UI on top. The UI is well-optimised and looks pleasing I would say. It packs 64GB of internal storage, which if found insufficient can further go up to 256GB via a dedicated microSD slot.
Vivo V11 Pro packs a 3,400mAh battery which lasts close to 20 hours. Although you will have to charge it at the end of the day, it should be more than enough for most users with moderate to heavy usage. Vivo V11 Pro supports fast charging, courtesy of a 9V/2A adapter. As a result, the battery is able to charge from 5% to 100% in less than two hours.
Vivo V11 Pro review: What’s bad?
Vivo V11 Pro lacks a 4K video recording option. It also misses a slow-mo mode that’s fast gaining popularity. Given that there is no support for optical image stabilisation (OIS) and electronic image stabilisation (EIS), Vivo V11 Pro is not the best for serious video recording.
I am a touch disappointed with its portrait mode. Portrait shots come out looking dull and often fail to focus on the subject and pictures resulting in an inaccurate background blur effect. This is more of a software issue and can be fixed in a subsequent update. But till they fix it, you will have to put up with it.
Also, HDR shots come out overexposed instead of making pictures look better with more details in dark areas, which is bad. These are some things Vivo can fix in upcoming software updates. While taking selfies, make sure to turn off its AI selfie beautification unless you want your selfies unnaturally flat and artificial.
Vivo V11 Pro has a fiber back instead of glass that’s seen in upper mid-range phones these days, which is surprising for what it’s asking. It also misses onto a USB Type-C port.
When it comes to resource-intensive games such as Asphalt 8 and Dead Trigger 2, you are bound to experience occasional lag and frequent stutters. In fact, if you stress your PUBG skills at highest graphics, you will have to bear with a few hiccups throughout the session.
My biggest complaint is about a missing search bar inside Settings. The device bundles a lot of bloatware like WPS Office, UC Browser, News Point and Phone Pe with close to 14GB of memory pre-occupied by the OS and third-party apps. Quick toggle controls need to be pulled up from the bottom, which makes one-handed use even more difficult.
Setting up the in-display fingerprint reader takes way too long. Unlike the traditional fingerprint reader, this one requires a little extra pressure. You need to press your finger a bit hard against the screen surface to register successfully. But it didn’t work all that great for me despite setting it up multiple times all over again.
Loudspeakers are not loud enough, resulting in meager audio. Thanks to a waterdrop notch, its earpiece placement takes longer to get used to. I often faced a situation where I could barely listen to a person on the other end of the call.
Vivo V11 Pro camera samples
Vivo V11 Pro review: Should you buy it or not?
You should buy Vivo V11 Pro if…
1) Buy Vivo V11 Pro phone if you are looking for a camera that can capture good pictures and selfies with accurate colours even in a low light condition.
2) If you are looking for a stunning display and a gradient design.
3) If you are looking for a great value-for-money option.
4) If you are looking for a better Oppo F9 Pro alternative.
You shouldn’t buy Vivo V11 Pro if…
1) Don’t buy Vivo V11 Pro if you are looking for a faster fingerprint reader.
2) If you want a loud speaker output on your phone.
3) If you want to stress your PUBG skills at highest graphics level.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines