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Vivo V17 Pro first impressions: dual pop-up selfie cameras at a premium price

Vivo has set course to evolve as an all-round smartphone maker with a focus on a complete camera package and solid spec sheet. The latest launch from the brand, the Vivo V17 Pro is the successor to the Vivo V15 Pro, and comes with a total of six cameras, two of which are located in the pop-up selfie camera module. I managed to spend a little time with the phone and here are my initial thoughts about the V17 Pro.

The Vivo V17 Pro flaunts a premium glossy design and is quite chunky at around 200g. The rear panel is home to quad cameras stacked vertically and Vivo branding along the centre, and gets a layer of Gorilla Glass 6 for protection.

Moving on, the phone weight is not evenly distributed and the phone is rather top-heavy because of the elevating dual camera module with LED flash. This means that the phone feels slightly uncomfortable in hand over prolonged usage sessions. Other elements inlcude a dedicated assistant button on left, and volume / power buttons on right. The 3.5mm audio inteface with the pop-up front cameras is located on the top, and hybrid SIM slot, USB Type-C port with speaker grill at the bottom. The earpiece is located on the elevating module.

The Vivo V17 Pro flaunts an impressive screen-to-body ratio of 91.65 percent. There are negligible bezels all around the 6.44-inch full HD+ FullView Super AMOLED display. The screen offers 500 nits of peak brightness, 20:9 aspect ratio and 100 per cent DCI-P3 colour gamut. Vivo has equipped the phone with features like Eye Protection, Dark mode, low brightness anti flicker and more. The screen produced vibrant colours, sharp text and decent viewing angles during my time with the phone.

In the performance department, the Vivo V17 Pro features a 2GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 processor along with Adreno 612 GPU at its core. The processor is further aided by 8GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage. The processor is powerful enough to handle everyday tasks as well as PUBG gameplay smoothly. During my short stint, I didn’t experience any lag or stutter at all. However, usage of the Snapdragon 675 is a tad surprising, given that Vivo itself has devices with the newer Snapdragon 712 chipset in the market. On the software front, the phone boots FunTouchOS 9.0 based on Android 9 Pie, which has its fair share of bloatware. Powering the device is a 4,000mAh battery with support for 18W dual-engine fast charging.

Let’s talk about the highlight of the smartphone now, the quad-camera rear setup and dual elevating selfie camera. The module on the back comprises of an f/1.8 48-megapixel Sony IMX582 sensor, a 13-megapixel telephoto lens with 2x optical zoom and 10x digital zoom, an 8-megapixel super-wide-angle lens with 120-degree field of view, and an f/2.4 2-megapixel depth sensor. For selfies, you get a 32-megapixel primary sensor backed by an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens and moonlight flash. The camera app has features like Night, Portrait, Photo, Video, 48MP, Pano, Live Photo, Slo-Mo, Time-Lapse, Pro, AR Stickers and more. The camera specs look impressive on paper, but I’d have to test the shooters out more extensively to give you my opinion.

The Vivo V17 Pro has been priced at Rs 29,990 and for this price tag it’s a tough sell in India. I say this because you have Redmi K20 Pro (review), which offers the powerful Snapdragon 855 chipset at a cheaper price. The ASUS 6z (review) which features a flip camera module is also priced similarly, and boasts flagship specs as well. While the V17 Pro’s selfie cameras are a definite attraction, that alone doesn’t justify the premium price tag.

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