Reviews

Vivo V17 Review: Excellent Camera, Flagship Hardware

This is our full Vivo V17 review, the latest flagship from Vivo Mobile. In this review, we discuss its excellent camera and high-end hardware of this phone.

Vivo’s V17 flagship is now available to purchase in markets across the globe. We received our review unit few weeks back and since then, we have been thoroughly testing it. Now that we have used the phone over the past few weeks, here is our complete, in-depth Vivo V17 review. The V series from Vivo has always been the brand’s flagship series. Replacing the older V15, Vivo has announced the new V17. From a hardware, design and even software standpoint, the new device has been revised quite heavily.

Multiple brands have started to adopt this recent trend of announcing new phones in a single series before a year’s time. Vivo, being one of them, has recently released the new V17 which takes over older V15 that was announced just months before. Despite the shorter time period in between both launches, the new phone brings radical changes including a drastic design revamp and various improvements in internals. We have had the phone with us for a couple of weeks now and after testing it thoroughly, here is our detailed discussion and review of Vivo V17.

Vivo V17 - Back side

Here are the tech specs for Vivo V17:

  • Network: (GSM / FDD / TDD / WCDMA)
  • Display: 6.44-inch Display (2400 x 1080)
  • Processor: Snapdragon 675
  • OS: Android 9.0, Funtouch OS 9.2
  • Camera Rear:  48MP f/1.8 + 8MP f/2.2 + 2MP f/2.4+ 2MP f/2.4
  • Camera Front: 32MP r/2.45
  • Connectivity: USB Type-C, Bluetooth 5.0 and 3.5mm Headphone Jack
  • Memory: 8GB RAM + 256GB Storage
  • Dimension: 159.01×74.17×8.54mm
  • Battery: 4,500mAh

Vivo V17 Review: Exterior and Design

Vivo V17 in hand

For any phone, the exterior plays an important role in the overall buying decision of the end consumer. Where most older age customers like a clean aesthetic with darker colors, the younger audience prefers vibrant paint-jobs and innovative designs. Thankfully, Vivo V17 strikes a great balance for both. Coming in two color options: Crystal Black and Crystal Sky, there is something for everyone. Uniquely, both paint choices are dual tone and emit unique colors within different lighting scenarios. Our unit being the Crystal Sky, we loved this clean and minimal dual-tone pain approach.

In terms of design, Vivo V17 has more of a squared off shape and features a singular large camera cluster on the back which also accommodates the dual tone flash. Design cues that set the phone apart include the unique camera bump that is elongated and has a bit of width as well. Further, the front display — which we will talk about in detail ahead — is nearly edge to edge. Notice from previous V15, there is no fingerprint sensor on the back and no motorized front camera. This is because Vivo V17 features an in-display camera along with an in-display fingerprint sensor! Both of these design choices make the phone look that much cleaner and aesthetically pleasing.

Fingeprint scanner of Vivo V17

Speaking of the in-display fingerprint scanner, it is actually pretty consistent and fast. Not as quick as a dedicated sensor but definitely not as slow as some of the very first in-display fingerprint sensors we saw.

For the main chassis, the phone has a plastic surround that wraps all around the phone. As the surround is indented inwards from the middle, it makes the phone easy to grip and reduces slip. On the left side, when viewed from the display side, you get all the physical buttons: volume rocker as well as the power button. Unfortunately, no texture difference on the power button for easy identification but it is to be noted, you actually get used to the placement pretty soon. For the right, you get the SIM tray that can also accommodate microSD card expansion for additional storage.

Lastly, for the top, you have just a microphone hole and on the bottom, you get USB Type-C connection, 3.5mm headphone jack, another microphone and a single speaker.

Vivo V17 Review: Internal Hardware and Performance

Vivo V17 review cover photo

– Display

Vivo V17 has a strong focus on its front display. Continuing from V15, new V17 also offers a minium bezel experience. What’s drastically changed however, is the fact that Vivo has opted for a Super AMOLED display this time round. Thanks to this, the colors are amazingly vivid, the phone has superior blacks and even offers great efficiency hence increased battery output. Also, being an OLED panel, this has allowed Vivo to go for an in-display fingerprint scanner as well as an in-display front camera both of which add great value to the phone.

Sizing-wise, the whole front panel measures at around 6.44 inch and has a resolution of 2400 x 1080. Just like all other modern phones coming out, the aspect ratio is geared towards increased length and narrower width making for ergonomic holding without the cost of screen real estate.

Vivo V17 Review: Excellent Camera, Flagship Hardware 11

– Processor, Storage and RAM

Vivo V17 has been equipped with a Snapdragon processor this time round, ditching MediaTek which was on the V15. To be exact, it is a Snapdragon 675 chipset which is a few classes below the flagship processor line but valid for the price. For storage and RAM, the phone offers a staggering 256GB base-storage (might be different in other regions) and 8GB of RAM. Adding to it, users can also upgrade storage via a dedicated microSD card slot that doesn’t interfere with dual SIM functionality.

As a complete package, we found the Vivo V17 to be quite powerful for its price-range. The phone handles daily tasks, demanding games and business oriented apps pretty well. Not once did we notice slow downs or RAM hiccups which is wonderful to see. For a qualitative analysis, you can view the benchmark results we ran on the phone below:

– Battery

Vivo has gone ahead and increased the capacity from older V15 which was 4,000mAh to now, 4,500mAh on the new Vivo V17. Coupling that with an efficient processor and an efficient display, we are happy to report that Vivo V17 is a complete one-day phone. Further, if you run it on a more steady use-cycle, you can extend the battery to more than a day! In screen-on numbers, we were able to achieve a maximum of 14 hours of on-screen time on a single charge.

Vivo V17 Review: Camera

Camera module of Vivo V17

The phone has pleasantly surprised in all aspects that we have discussed till now, however, we think Vivo V17’s highlight feature isn’t the in-display fingerprint sensor or the in-display camera but rather it is its rear quad-camera system! Sure, the Quad title might be more of a gimmick but the main sensor and the software that goes along with it, is actually one of the best we have seen!

Before talking photo details, let’s review the hardware. The main camera sensor is rated at 48MP with f1/.8 aperture. Next, there is a 8MP wide-angle lens with f/2.2 aperture. More, there are almost two identical additional lenses both rated at 2MP with f/2.4. One is used for bokeh while the other for Macro.

The photos we were able to capture were spectacular. Here are some sample shots to back what we have discussed about the phone’s photo capability:

We will be doing a complete Camera walk through of the phone including a detailed discussion of all the camera modes, so stay tuned.

For the front, the phone comes with a 32MP module with an aperture of f/2.45. The photos that come out from the front sensor are quite sharp and thanks to numerous photo modes including Super night selfie, users can capture the perfect selfie with the phone!

Vivo V17 Review: Software

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Vivo ships V17 with Funtouch OS 9.2 that is based on Android Pie. While the software skin has been refined since V15, it is disappointing to see that the phone isn’t running Android 10 (when reviewed). Hopefully, an update is in the works and gets released soon!

Judging Funtouch OS, it is quite a colorful UI with a strong focus on making things easier to use. Unlike most phones where the notification pull-down carries useful buttons such as WiFi On/Off, this skin takes a different approach. For buttons and other utility access, you need to swipe up from the left bottom which will then display a whole panel that carries all your useful buttons and sound settings. We would categorize this approach as good or bad but definitely, it is unique and seldom found on Android phones.

For proprietary functionality, you get loads of it. The phone has its own assistant called Jovi, then there are loads of customization options which include different style of navigation such as gestures. Further, the phone supports Ultra Game Mode and Motorbike Mode.

For more details on FuntouchOS 9 on the Vivo V17, you can go through the official Vivo website.

More Pictures

Screenshots

About the author

Taimur Akmal

Devoted writer, enjoys developing code. Appreciates excellent food, exceptional coffee and great company. He is also into sublime design and nicely built cars.