The Vivo V5 Plus: An iPhone clone but still very likable
MANILA, Philippines – The Vivo V5 Plus is the newest flagship from Chinese brand Vivo. It has been available since January 28, Sunday, for P20,000.
For that price, you get a phone that oddly looks like an iPhone. Okay, it doesn't "oddly" look like an iPhone; it's a straight-up clone of the Apple product. That's not a bad thing. It's not the most noble thing to mime another brand's style, but if you're going to copy, copy from one of the best in the biz.
We say it's not a bad thing because the V5 Plus really looks gorgeous. Its 2.5D glass, soft curvature, matte back, and an overall solid feel result in a premium experience. The V5 Plus won't win in originality in terms of physical design, but it merits some commendation for being unabashed in its iPhone mimicry.
It's a beautiful phone that's great to hold and great to look at. While we wish we could chastise it for not attempting to break new ground with its physical design, we wouldn't because we feel that it's been built with quality. And we shouldn't be surprised, really; former Vivo phones have always shown fondness towards Apple's products.
That fondness extends to the phone's user interface (UI) called Funtouch OS 3.0. The phone runs on Android 6.0 Marshmallow but is skinned with Vivo's proprietary UI. It's neater and cleaner than most proprietary UIs that always seem to attempt to draw attention to themselves. Then again, it will draw attention to itself because of its direct similarity with Apple design cues including icons and the pop-up function bar from the bottom.
The display – a 5.5-inch, 1920x1080 screen – is sharp with a pixel density of 401 pixels-per-inch. For a 5.5-incher, the phone feels great in the hand, and feels like you're handling something smaller, which could be because that the phone sports some sexy, slim bezels. It feels tight and compact. It also comes with the latest iteration of Gorilla Glass, the 5th generation, for the toughest possible protection at the moment.
On the specs side, the V5 Plus sports a Snapdragon 625 processor, 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of internal memory, and is also a dual-SIM unit – standard specs for a midranger. But if it had been set at a slightly lower price, say P18,500, the V5 Plus would've been hard to resist. Remember, in consumers' minds, the phone is battling it out with other phones from last year that have the top-of-the-line Snapdragon 820 chip, whose prices have gone down. If there's one thing, however, we're not so keen about is that it still has a micro-USB port instead of the more convenient, put-it-in-any-which-way-you-want USB Type-C.
But there's one thing that most of those phones don't have: the dual front-facing cameras. This is the Vivo V5 Plus' ultimate selling point. Its front-facing camera setup features one 20-megapixel shooter co-engineered with Sony and one 8-megapixel camera that is used to achieve depth of field in photos.
Working in tandem, the cameras allow one to produce beautiful high-resolution selfies that allow your face to stand out, thanks to its "bokeh" effect. For the uninitiated, bokeh is the out-of-focus areas in a photo that allow the in-focus parts to stand out. It's one of the first phones to allow one to do that using the front cameras – an innovation that's also inspired by Apple's iPhone 7 Plus which touted a bokeh effect when it was first introduced.
And 20 megapixels? Simply put, that's a lot of pixels dedicated to recreating your face. If you're into this type of photography or are keen on making video blogs with the phone facing you, the phone is definitely one to consider. The back shooter is a good one too, sporting a higher-than-the-midrange-average 16-megapixel resolution.
A 3,160 mAh battery powers the unit – adequate for a phone like this. Other bonuses? It's got a fingerprint sensor on the home button, which, just based on experience, feels like the most responsive we've come across. It also puts a premium on sound with its AK4376 Hi-Fi system which, at the very least, is a sincere effort to improve sound on mobile. For casual listeners, it's not the biggest sell. But for those who are tired of an average listening experience, the V5 Plus should be a step-up.
Vivo is also very thoughtful to have added a case and a screen protector (one sheet is already attached while one can be kept as an extra). It's a small gesture but it gives you the sense that Vivo is intent on doing a little extra just to please the consumer.
But clearly, the V5 Plus knows what it is: a selfie phone. We'll stop short of saying it's the perfect selfie phone, but with its dual-cam setup and the high-megapixel count on the main front-facing shooter, it's a strong contender in this particular market. – Rappler.com