Good to see but low performance
Vivo V7 detailed review
Vivo phones are usually selfie-centric and not different from the Vivo V7 You can exclude from the naming scheme, V7 is the smaller version of V7 + that we reviewed earlier. The features of the smartphone are almost the same specifications, but at a lower price. So technically, it should be a good deal, right? Okay, it depends a lot on your selfie besides your friendship. On paper, the Vivo V7 seems to be a fairly good device and seems to be ticking all the right checkboxes. The phone is powered by an octa-core SoC, features 4GB RAM, 32GB storage, and even an 18: 9 aspect ratio display, basically offering all the regular hardware you can find on any other smartphone these days. However, the biggest difference between this phone and what it can enjoy in the future is its small (pocketable) size, but is it enough? We have been using the phone for quite some time and here is a detailed review of what it has to offer.
Construction and design
The phone has a 5.7-inch almost bezel-less display that makes it comparable to the size of a typical 5.2 or 5.3-inch smartphone. The smaller size is not only more ergonomic to use with one hand, but also looks better (or clever). The Vivo has basically the same design as the V7 +. The phone has a plastic back, which is inferior to most of the competitors seen on paper which offers a metal unibody build. That said, both the top and bottom of the phone, the Chamford Edge and the fake antenna line give it a premium look. Also, if you don’t drop the phone, you won’t really find the difference.
Display and UI
The long 18: 9 aspect ratio display also plays a big role in the appearance of the phone and plays its role well. The bottom line is that this is a better looking device than a more performance oriented device in the same price category. However, reality and value for money are the two essential pillars of the budget-based market and this is where the Vivo V7 falls short.
You get a 5.7-inch display on this phone with an HD + resolution (1440 x 720p), which is totally unpleasant considering the price of the device. So, the display is not as sharp as some of its competitors. That said, if you don’t tick off the display by its low sharpness, you won’t see a lack of display. Being an LCD panel it has a decent color fidelity and good viewing angles.
Nevertheless, we at Digit agree that any display larger than 5.5 inches should have at least 1080p resolution. Touch feedback is also satisfactory, but we found delays in the animations, which I believe is a bad thing about using a heavy UI.
The UI we are talking about is FunTouch OS 3.2, which is layered on top of Android 7.1.1 Nougat. First of all, using the old operating system is not appropriate for any phone maker (now) and trying to get Vivo’s Android Orio at least into the 2017 smartphone portfolio.[makershouldbeexcused(now)usinganolderoperatingsystemandVivoshouldstrivetopushAndroidOreotoatleastits2017smartphoneportfolioatthelatestWearesayingit’squiteheavybecauseitisalwaysusing2GBormoreRAMevenafterclearingtherecentlyopenedapps[নির্মাতাকে(এখন)মাফকরাউচিতনয়এবংভিভোরউচিতঅ্যান্ড্রয়েডওরিওকেঅন্তত2017সালেরস্মার্টফোনপোর্টফোলিওতেঠেলেদেওয়ারচেষ্টাকরা।আমরাবলছিএটিবেশভারীকারণসম্প্রতিখোলাঅ্যাপগুলিসাফকরারপরেওএটিসর্বদা2GBবাতারবেশিRAMব্যবহারকরে।[makershouldbeexcused(now)usinganolderoperatingsystemandVivoshouldstrivetopushAndroidOreotoatleastits2017smartphoneportfolioatthelatestWearesayingit’squiteheavybecauseitisalwaysusing2GBormoreRAMevenafterclearingtherecentlyopenedapps
As for the interface, it’s business as usual. FunTouch OS 3.2 has remained a really well-designed rip-off from iOS. Vivo has tried to make the UI design as consistent with iOS as possible. From iconography to the quick toggle menu, which is displayed with a swipe at the bottom. Even the native app’s additional settings are located in the main settings menu. That being said, everything is functional and easy to use, once you cross the little learning curve.
This brings us to the performance of the phone that comes from the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 SoC, we saw in the big siblings. Even you get the same 4GB RAM and so the functionality of the device is quite uniform. The Snapdragon 450 remains as powerful as the Snapdragon 625 that we recently saw in the Redmi Note 5 in terms of synthetic benchmarks. However, the Vivo V7 doesn’t feel fast enough for a smooth multitasking experience. Whether you jump into apps or just try to open an app, the phone seems slow, especially compared to other devices at the same price. However, we didn’t have any major issues with the device and it includes gaming performance. You can play the games you like, but with occasional frame drops and long loading times.
The audio quality is loud enough through the single speaker at the bottom but it can be louder because it easily gets stuck in the jeans pocket. We appreciate Vivo’s efforts to improve audio quality for music enthusiasts, and the V7 is different here. The phone offers more satisfactory audio output through headphones than most phones at its price.
Skilled octa-core processor and 720p + display means battery life is commendable. The phone can easily be used for one day’s price without any problem. The phone uses more battery while gaming but nowadays it is offered in any smartphone. Lightweight users can get more than a day off the phone, but not more.
As you may have noticed by now (by this review), the Vivo V7 is not a particularly outstanding phone. This is an average phone with regular specifications and equally mainstream performance. However, the silver bullet that Vivo believes in is the camera, especially the front.
The 24MP front-facing snapper is the same unit we saw in the big cousin and therefore offers the same image quality. It offers almost the truth for the best decent, source color reproduction. With a decent level of detail the focus is soft by default, which seems to be the case with most selfie-centric smartphones. Although the larger megapixel count allows for more data in the image, all images taken from the selfie camera contain some sound. This term increases rapidly in low light images, making the image unusable in low light conditions. On the opposite end of the scale, when taking pictures in bright outdoor situations, there are visible highlight clippings. That said, most of these selfies turn out to be ‘good enough’ to post on social media platforms and post pictures on social media platforms. You’ll find a software bokeh on the front camera that’s good but we’ve seen better.
On the other hand, the rear camera does not produce a good picture. The pictures we took with the rear camera looked good on the phone, with a large display proving to be just decent. While Vivo’s camera algorithm produces better color than most, it struggles to keep details in check. We like the fact that, like the V7 +, the subject separation on this camera is good, but the competition has been caught and even surpassed since it was launched. Software-enabled portrait mode is good enough again, but we’ve seen better in recent times.
The last row
Vivo and Oppo have a pea in a pod. Both companies have been playing selfie games for a long time and the Vivo V7 is another phone that does the same thing. In terms of selfie games this is not a big upgrade compared to what Vivo is offering so far but it does have a new small form factor that we personally like. You won’t find a lack of performance, but it can’t compete with the Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro. Our internal tests indicate that the Redmi Note 5 Pro takes better selfies than any other phone in the sub-15K category, including the Vivo V7, but good luck with a purchase.
After all, the Vivo V7 is another phone that tries to be more but can’t go beyond that. The phone was supposed to create a “clear selfie”, which it does to some extent but considering the competition, doesn’t really push any boundaries.