Similar to its sister company, OnePlus Vivo has been trying very hard to make it into the premium segment for a while with its X-series of smartphones. The devices in this series focus on the camera but the past models have fallen short of expectations in other areas given their premium price tag. The Vivo X50 Pro when introduced provided a unique gimbal stabilization feature but it included a midrange Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G processor at a premium price. The company fixed this with the launch of the Vivo X60 Pro+ but the device had no IP rating, stereo speakers, or any kind of wireless charging.
Now with the launch of the new Vivo X70 Pro+, Vivo seems to have fixed all the shortcomings of the Vivo X60 series. The phone is priced at Rs. 79,990 in India which means that it competes with devices like iPhone 13, Samsung S21+, Mi 11 Ultra, and other premium flagship phones. Vivo has upgraded its camera system and included all the best and top-line specs that any flagship Android phone has to offer today. But whether the device deserves the high-end price tag or not can only be decided after use. I have been using this device for the past week and here is my Vivo X70 Pro+ Review.
Vivo X70 Pro Plus is currently available on Flipkart at a price tag of Rs. 79,990 for the 12GB RAM and 256GB variant. It is available in black, blue, and orange colour variants globally. But sadly only the black variant is available in India. The device has been on sale since September 30 but due to high demand currently, it is out of stock and will be back soon.
The box for Vivo X70 Pro+ comes with a carbon-fiber texture. Here are the things you get inside the box:
- Vivo X70 Pro Plus Handset
- 55W Charging Adapter
- Type-C charging cable
- SIM Eject Tool
- Phone Case
Let’s talk about the on-paper specifications of the Vivo X70 Pro Plus at first:
- Display: 6.78-inch, AMOLED 120Hz display with 1440 x 3200 resolution
- Camera: 50MP +48MP + 12MP +8MP | 32MP Front Camera
- Battery: Li-Ion 4500 mAh Battery with 55W fast-charging
- Chipset: Qualcomm SM8350 Snapdragon 888+ 5G (5 nm)
- RAM & ROM: 8GB/12GB RAM | 256 GB, 512GB
- Dimensions: 164.5 x 75.2 x 8.9 mm
- Weight: 209 grams
Vivo is known for making stylish-looking smartphones that provide a premium feel for the price. I have seen their midrange V-series which offers a slim and lightweight profile while packing decent specifications for the price. The things are the same with the X70 Pro+. If you look at it from a distance you can definitely tell that it is a premium device. The phone comes with a glass body and with all sorts of coating done on top to offer a satin-ish, matte finish. While the phone certainly looks very premium the glass design makes it slightly slippery to hold. I would suggest you slap on the in-box case that comes with the device.
While all the Vivo smartphones launched in India are lightweight, the X70 Pro+ comes in the heavyweight category. It isn’t as heavy as other phones like the Xiaomi MIUI 11 ultra and ROG Phone 5 but at nearly 213 grams you do feel the weight after a few minutes of using the smartphone. I felt that despite being a tall phone the X70 Pro+ is easy to hold and the credit goes to the curved edges. Similar to most Android phones Vivo has placed the power and volume buttons on the right side of the phone. That being said, while the power button is easy to reach, someone like me with small hands had to perform some finger gymnastics in order to reach towards the volume button. Instead of positioning the volume buttons above the power button, Vivo could have positioned it on the left side of the frame.
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At the bottom of the device, you get the speaker grill, USB Type-C port, microphone and SIM card tray. At the top, you get a noise cancellation microphone and IR Blaster.
Overall the phone looks really beautiful and is built like a tank. The build quality is excellent although the device feels slightly heavier to hold.
Vivo X70 Pro+ features a 6.78 inches WQHD+ display with 3200 x 1440 pixel resolution. The display, which is very sharp, gets quite bright even in broad day sunlight with 1500 nits of peak brightness. The company claims that the display will be able to reproduce a billion colours and has very natural-looking colour tones.
The edges of the display are curved and it looks quite immersive viewing content on the X70 Pro Plus. This display is an LTPO display with a 120Hz refresh rate and WQHD+ resolution. The display also supports HDR 10 + certification. You can enjoy HD videos on YouTube and Amazon Prime but HDR certification of Netflix is still pending. Vivo has confirmed that they have applied for this and it will be soon enabled with an update.
The gorgeous AMOLED panel features a 120 Hz refresh rate that makes the software experience pretty fluid and you can also see the difference while playing games. What makes content consumption and gaming on this device even better is the addition of a stereo speaker setup. With the bright and vibrant display along with loud clear speakers the X70 Pro+ of a rich experience whether you are watching videos or playing games on the device. I did not experience any lag at the 120 Hz refresh date setting while scrolling or playing Call of Duty: Mobile and BGMI more on this in the performance section.
I began the performance test by playing Call of Duty: Mobile, BGMI and Fortnite and as expected the phone provided flawless results. The touch sampling rate was spot-on without any lag or stutter. I switched on to high graphics quality and max frame rate despite that the phone provided an excellent gaming session. The dual speakers made it a very immersive audio experience throughout the game. The 4D vibration feature strangely did not work with Call of Duty: Mobile even though it was supposed to.
The phone also does not get very hot during gameplay sessions or when downloading a large update it just got a little warm. I ran two consecutive AnTuTu benchmark tests and noticed that the device got quite hot after the second one. But the phone didn’t get any hot while using the camera or gaming for extended periods so this is a very good thing. The X70 Pro Plus managed a score of 8,16,115 in AnTuTu and scored 112 and 3,621 in GeekBench’s single and multi-core tests. These are pretty respectable scores and right up to the mark of flagship devices.
Vivo X70 Pro+ comes with a custom Android skin on top of Android 11 which is FunTouch OS 12. The company has been talking a lot about widget-based original os but it has yet to make it to any of the Vivo handsets in India. The X70 Pro+ does get a handful of those cool-looking widgets that include a nano music player, a few basic stickers, cleanup apps, an accelerator function, and one widget for the weather.
The Funtouch OS features buttons that open and close the jukebox like a music player and it has some very interesting animations like a CD slotting into a tray. You can even swipe across the album widget to glance at a few recent photos or swipe across the weather widget to switch between hourly and daily weather updates. The widgets are interactive and a lot of fun but they are missing a lot of deeper integration which is something you can find on Apple’s iOS.
Overall the software felt very fluid without any lag or stutter whatsoever. I was most surprised to see was that the phone is completely loaded with several third-party apps and not even a single of them send any annoying promotional notification during the whole review period and you can remove most of the apps by simply uninstalling it.
Vivo is offering a camera setup that is similar to the previous phones but we do see the 32MP 2x telephoto camera being swapped out for a 12MP 2x shooter with optical image stabilization. Otherwise, we have still got the Samsung Isocell GN1 50MP main camera, a 48MP IMX598 ultra-wide camera with micro gimbal stabilization, and an 8MP periscope lens. Vivo also claims that the use of high transmittance glass lenses and Zeiss’s T* lens coating will result in reduced lens flare. The phone also includes a custom V1 imaging chip that reduces noise and improves efficiency.
Images shot with the main camera offered a good balance between rich colors and realistic hues. You can also expect some pleasantly wide dynamic range here although I found the pictures to be a little contrast heavy and over process at times. The largest sensor size also results in a shallow depth of field here, this means that you can get a decent level of background blur without needing to switch on to the portrait mode. The downside is that you will need to occasionally step back a bit when you are clicking close-up shots with the main camera.
Vivo has also brought a few more Zeiss portrait modes with the phone and it is generally pretty good. It is not perfect although it had little trouble with the objects in the background that had pop-up colors. I noticed my skin tone to be clearly different in a few portrait shots which are likely due to exposure or white balance differences. I would still say that the portrait mode here offers results that are decent and you can adjust the background blur even after you capture the image.
Photos that were captured indoors and outdoors in daylight came out noise-free and provided good detail and dynamic range. Sharpness was also good and the X70 Pro Plus did not go overboard with it. Although I did notice barrel distortion towards the edges of photos when using the ultra-wide-angle camera. Thanks to Zeiss the colors were faithful to the original scene.
When I zoomed in a scene using the telephoto cameras the images came out to be sharp and free of noise and provided good detail up to 5x optical zoom. But if you go beyond this and way till the 60x digital zoom photos showed a watercolor-like effect and the level of detail X70 Pro Plus captured decreases exponentially. Still, the images taken up to 10x zoom did provide some sharpness and were usable. I was most impressed with how the X70 Pro Plus managed to retain color and white balance across the zoom range.
Even the selfies came out to be cleaned and sharp with loads of detail. Edge detection present in the portrait shots was excellent and is applied when shooting indoor plants and other objects using the rear camera. Vivo has included a couple of different portrait modes that can replicate the look of classic Zeiss lenses. I tried them all and they all have very distinct looks and provided good results in both daylight and low light conditions.
I found the pictures with a bit more noise when I tried to capture them in low light conditions. Switching to the night mode solves that problem and delivers a better dynamic range that provides more detail in darker areas of the photo. The Zeiss T* coating also took care of the glade problem from nearby lamp posts and other light sources. I even tried taking a photo with 60x digital zoom in the night mode and the results were extremely surprising and usable.
Vivo X70 Pro+ comes with a 4500 mAh battery and I was a bit worried about how long it will last given the phone has a 6.7-inch WQHD+ 120Hz display. I was wrong even with the display refresh rate set at 120 Hz throughout the day I easily managed a day and a half of heavy usage. Setting the refresh rate to auto might even give you extended battery life. With regular use, I found the phone left with about 40% of battery life by the end of the day which is quite good for a premium flagship phone.
Vivo provides a 55W Flash Charger in the box and evidently, it takes only 55 minutes for this phone to go from 0 to 100%. The phone also includes wireless charging and supports up to a 50-watt charging rate. But to take advantage of that high-speed wireless charging you have to use the proprietary dock which will be coming to India later and will be sold separately.
The dual speakers provided a great audio experience during activities like gaming or watching videos. They are clear and provides a lot of bass. You get the fingerprint scanner under the display which is quite easy to set up. I found the scanner fast enough to open the phone in one try. The 5G feature covers almost all the popular bands available so you have nothing to worry about there.
Vivo has certainly provided all the top-notch specifications with the X70 Pro+. With unique features such as gimbal camera stabilization and Vivo has successfully got itself a space in the premium smartphone market. The phone has enough upgrades and features that if you’re on the previous X60 Pro+ you should definitely switch to this one. It is not perfect but sure comes close and with a whole lot of features there is very little room to complain about.
If you think about it, there are a lot of options at this price point including those from big brands such as Apple and Samsung but probably none of them offers so much flexibility when it comes to cameras, hardware, and features.