May 25 2020: Over the years in India, Vivo has acquired fiercely loyal customers who will upgrade to another Vivo instead of shopping around. They are comfortable with its look and feel and don't bother if other brands are slightly better spec-wise and what passes for paisa vasool
This has perhaps why the latest Vivio V19 has stuck to the Snapdragon 712 platform rather than opt for a slightly more powerful processor as some of the competition in the mid-priced handset sector have done
That said the V19 delivers, where its fans look -- in the camera category. The main camera ensemble comes with a 48 MP primary lens backed by an 8 MP wide angle, a 2 MP macro for closeup and another 2 MP for bokeh. Having tasted the bokeh controlled blurring effect with the selfie camera, users now demand the same with the rear camera and Vivo has apparently listened. You can shoot in full 48 MP but be prepared for very big file sizes.
The front or selfie camera is a 32 MP + 8 MP wide angle combo which means there a wide latitude from sharp closeups to fitting the entire gang into the group photo.
The Vivo feature of fast FlashCharge when coupled with a generous 4500 mAh battery means you can do quick charge of about 50-60% in half an hour. There are two variants: the 8 GB RAM with either 128 GB or 256 GB of ROM priced Rs 27,990 and Rs 31,990 respectively. Going for double the storage for Rs 3000 extra will make sense for many buyers.
Vivo pre installs its Funtouch 10 OS on top of Android 10 and this means some preinstalled apps and this can cut both ways: taking up space if you are not interested in the app selection but comforting for returning customers of Vivo. I noticed some 15 popular apps in India are offered in an opening menu for easy installation: Whatsapp, TikTok, PhonePe,Likee, FacebookLite, Bigo etc, so you do have some choice. For a phone whose USP is good cameras, the button is right there, bottom right in the primary menu.
This is a 6.44 inch phone, but feels rather longer and narrower than many phones of this size. It is chunky to hold ( 128 grams) and not superthin. It is a sign of the times that the GPS is compatible with European ( Galileo) and Chines (Beidou) alternatives. Maybe it is time for Vivo to also embrace the Indian system NavIC too, as some Made in India phones are doing. I thought they should have included NFC capability since so many users make contactless payments using their phones these days.
In total, the Vivo V19, lives up to the brand’s reputation for solid build and good cameras. Vivo users upgrading, won’t be disappointed. ANAND PARTHASARATHY