Vivo S1 Review; Stylish And Much More - TeknoGadyet

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Vivo S1 Review; Stylish And Much More

INTRODUCTION:

Vivo does not have a major launch this year, except for the V15 series. But, it does not mean they don't have something great in their arsenal. In fact, they have something new to offer, the Vivo S1.

Vivo S1 Review; Stylish And Much More
Vivo S1 Review; Stylish And Much More

The Vivo S1 was unveiled late August of this year, and being marketed as a stylish smartphone that captures and upgrades the style of any individual. According to Vivo Philippines, they had more than 12,000 pre-orders of the S1 both online and on the ground, which translates to about 180M pesos. With that huge turnout, there's really something special with this handset, and that's what we explored with the review.


PHYSICAL:

The facade of the Vivo S1 has a great resemblance of that the V11 Pro, both devices have Super AMOLED display with a small notch up top and Full HD+ resolution. However, the S1 has a slightly smaller screen at 6.38 inches as compared to 6.41 inches of the V11 Pro, even if it has bigger physical dimensions - 159.5mm x 75.2mm x 8.1mm versus 157.9mm x 75mm x 7.9mm. There's also no mention if it has any kind of protective glass, but we are happy to report that it comes with a pre-installed plastic film.

Vivo S1 Display With Notch That Holds The Selfie Camera
Front

Display quality-wise, Super AMOLED panel is known for great color reproduction and excellent viewing angles, and the one mounted in the S1 shares the same traits. And, for those who love dark more, you will be delighted to know that it offers that within the system and without the need to install an additional app. Moreover, it also supports Always-On display.

Vivo S1 Display Settings and Dark Mode
Display Settings and Dark Mode

Flipping the phone over, you will see a very stylish back panel, that looks like it is made of glass (even the phone is mostly plastic) and has some gradient effect on it. There are two color options available, the one that we have is called Skyline Blue, the other one is Diamond Black. If you ask us, we like the blue variant than the black counterpart. Here, you will find the triple camera setup, which is one of the major highlights of the S1.

You will also notice that there's no fingerprint sensor at the back, that's because Vivo placed it under the display just like the Vivo V15 Pro. The reaction time of the sensor is quite fast, that it unlocks the phone in almost an instant. The phone also supports face recognition, and that too is blazing fast. And, if in case you need a more secure way to unlock this device, you can actually use your face and fingerprint simultaneously to do so.

Also Read: Vivo V15 Pro Review; Elevating Your Smartphone Experience

Moving through the sides, the right holds the volume keys and the power button, while the left has a dedicated button for Jovi, Vivo's very own AI assistant, however, in real life, pressing it will bring up Google Assistant. The top has nothing on it, while the bottom is quite full with the 3.5mm audio jack, microphone, loudspeaker grill, and the MicroUSB port, yet, S1 still uses that.

In terms of weight, it is slightly hefty at 179 grams, but there is a good reason behind that, that is because Vivo equipped it with a large battery, will get to that part later on.

By the way, the retail box contains the phone itself, earphones, MicroUSB cable, power adapter, SIM ejector tool, free protective case, and paper documentation.


SOFTWARE:

Vivo S1 Software Interface
Software

The Vivo S1 runs on Funtouch OS 9, which is the latest feature-packed operating system of Vivo based on Android 9 Pie. The interface looks more simple, yet refined than before, and with lots of customization options. It also comes with tons of useful things rooted in the settings, such as Smart Click, App Clone, Smart Split, S-Capture, and more. Meanwhile, it is loaded with several pre-installed apps, but most of them, 10 to be exact can be uninstalled easily, namely Kids Mode, Lock, Google Duo, Lazada, WeSing, Google News, Webnovel, Facebook, WPS Office, and Opera Browser. Without those apps, what remains are the essentials and Vivo's applications, the iTheme, V-Appstore, iManager, EasyShare, vivo.com, and vivoCloud.

To learn more about the Funtouch OS, you can visit https://www.vivo.com/ph/funtouchos.


PERFORMANCE:

Vivo S1 CPU-Z Info
CPU-Z Info

The Vivo S1 is one of the first devices to run on recently announced Helio P65 processor, and with its naming convention, one can say that it is an upgrade with MediaTek's popular P60 chipset. However, that's not entirely true, the P65 comes with the newer Cortex-A75 and Cortex-A55 cores, but the GPU is downgraded from Mali-G72MP3 to just Mali-G52MP2. The good news though is that it gets some upgrades in the NPU department, which makes AI-based applications run more smoothly.

Below are the benchmark scores for reference:

Antutu - 147,097
Geekbench 4 - 1,849 (single core)
Geekbench 4- 6,066 (multi core)
Geekbench 4 - 4,791 (RenderScript)
PC Mark - 8,372
3D Mark Sling Shot - 1,469
3D Mark Sling Shot Extreme - 1,106 (Vulkan)
3DMark Sling Shot Extreme - 1,086 (OpenGL ES 3.1)
3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited – 16,655
3DMark Ice Storm Extreme - Max
Geekbench 5 - 346 (single core)
Geekbench 5 - 1,313 (multi core)
Geekbench 5 - 4,791 (RenderScript)

Vivo S1 Benchmark Scores
Benchmark Scores

Looking at the above results, we can say that it got better grades overall than the devices that are equipped with Helio P60. The same can be said when compared to similar chipset made by other manufacturers like Exynos 9610 inside the Samsung Galaxy A50.

Paired with 6GB of RAM and well-optimized OS, the Vivo S1 run smoothly in day to day basis and can handle some of the most demanding games of today, even in high settings, such as PUBG Mobile, Mobile Legends, and Asphalt 9. Although, we noticed that those apps started slower compared to those devices with higher chipset, once the game is running, you can hardly tell the difference in performance. There is also Game Assistant that further optimizes the game experience, wherein users can reject background calls, block notifications, and more.

The audio quality is more of the average side, both when using earphones and when on loudspeaker grill, that's probably because it does not have any Hi-Fi chip, which is a bummer since it can play FLAC files. Meanwhile, video playback is superb and can decode MKV formats. Speaking of which, there are lots of space for storing media files and installing games, there's about 112GB internal storage available to the users, plus an option to add more via the phone's dedicated slot for MicroSD card.

Overall, there is nothing much to complain about its everyday performance, it can process smoothly almost anything you throw at it. However, as most mid-range smartphone users tend to hold with their device longer, we are yet to see how it will perform after several months or even years.

Related: Vivo V11 Review; Right in the Middle


CAMERA:

Vivo S1 Stylish Back and the Triple Camera Setup
Stylish Back and the Triple Camera Setup

The photography department is one of the key selling points of the Vivo S1, there is a total of four cameras mounted on it, a 32MP f/2.0 in the front and three modules at the back composed of 16MP f/1.8 with PDAF, 8MP f/1.8 ultrawide lens, and a 2MP f/2.4 for depth sensing. This setup is not something new, and it is quite common in the mid-range segments, but it still gives consumers flexibility and plenty of room to play around and be creative with their shots.

Vivo S1 Camera Interface
Camera Interface

Speaking of which, the camera interface is quite intuitive and offers lots of shooting modes, including Ultra Night Scene, Time-Lapse Photos, AR Stickers, Pro Mode that allows users to adjust exposure value, ISO, and shutter speed, and Fun Video that lets users shoot a 60-second clip with special effects and custom music.

Camera Samples:

Vivo S1 Camera Sample - Day, Primary 16MP Sensor
Day, Primary 16MP Sensor
Vivo S1 Camera Sample - Day, Ultrawide 8MP Sensor
Day, Ultrawide 8MP Sensor
Vivo S1 Camera Sample - Close-up
Close-up
Vivo S1 Camera Sample - Night
Night
Vivo S1 Camera Sample - Selfie
Selfie
Vivo S1 Camera Sample - Selfie at Night
Selfie at Night

The primary 16MP Sony IMX499 and 120-degree wide-angle 8MP sensors work independently with one another. It means that in general, the 16MP camera gives more details, greater color reproduction, crisper images than the 8MP, since it offers more pixels than the latter. Therefore, to have better quality outputs, as much as possible, we recommend using the primary lens, and when you really need to fit lots of subjects inside the frame, that's the only time you use the secondary shooter.

Don't get us wrong, both sensors can give great image outputs during day time. The same is true during the night time or when lighting is less, although, noise is evident when you zoom in.

For comparison sake, we can say that it has better overall image quality when pit against V11 series, but slightly fell behind when compared with the V15 series. That is when shooting the back cameras, when taking selfies, the front snapper is as impressive as the flagship V15 Pro.

See Also: Vivo V15 Review; A total head-turner! 

Moving on to video recording, both the front and back cameras are maxed out at 1080p resolution at 30 frames per second. There is also no stabilization of any kind. Therefore, the outcome might be shaky when you do not have steady hands, so, better use a gimbal or have it fixed in a platform.


CONNECTIVITY:

We mentioned earlier that it has a dedicated card slot for MicroSD, this simply means that it supports three cards in total, allowing users to have two Nano SIMs installed without worrying for storage expansion. Mobile data connection is fast and includes band 28 or commonly known as the 700MHz frequency. The WiFi is dual-band, that is 2.4GHz and 5GHz, Bluetooth is version 5.0, the location system uses GPS with A-GPS, BDS, GLONASS, and Galileo, and can still receive FM Radio broadcasts. The wired connection is still MicroUSB 2.0 and not USB Type-C, and 3.5mm audio jack is still present.


BATTERY:

There isn't much improvement in battery technology; that is why having a bigger capacity plus fast charging support is becoming the norm. And, this is true with the S1, boasting a massive 4,500mAh battery with dual-engine rapid charging technology paired with in-box 18W desktop charger. Power management of the S1 is not the best we have experienced, but users won't be disappointed with its almost two-day battery life, and more than 12 hours of rating in PC Mark.


FINAL WORDS:

Vivo S1 Review Philippines
Vivo S1

The Vivo S1 is indeed a stylish phone with lots of things to like about aside from its looks, such as the fast in-display fingerprint sensor, the Super AMOLED display, excellent battery life, and good overall performance. However, with an asking price of Php14,999, this good-looking mid-range smartphone has lots of fierce competitors to face. But with Vivo's declaration of more than 12,000 pre-order units, it seems they already hit the sweet spots of the market and wasn't bothered by the competition at all.

Vivo S1 Specs (Philippines):

  • Dual Nano-SIM, dual standby, supports LTE connectivity
  • 6.38-inch Super AMOLED FHD (2340 x 1080) capacitive touch screen, 19.5:9 aspect ratio
  • Dimensions: 159.5mm x 75.2 mm x 8.1mm
  • Weight: 179 grams
  • Funtouch OS 9 based on Android 9.0 Pie
  • 64-bit octa-core (2 x 2.0GHz Cortex-A75 + 6 x 1.7GHz Cortex-A55) CPU, ARM Mali-G52MP2 GPU, MediaTek MT6768 Helio P65 chipset
  • 6GB RAM
  • 128GB storage, expandable up to 256GB via MicroSD, uses dedicated slot
  • 16MP f/1.8 + 8MP f/2.2 ultrawide + 2MP f/2.4 depth triple rear cameras with LED flash, 1080p video recording at 30fps
  • 32MP f/2.0 AI front camera, 1080p video recording at 30fps
  • Multimedia Player, supports FLAC and MKV
  • FM Radio
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band
  • Bluetooth v5.0
  • GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO, BDS
  • MicroUSB 2.0, with OTG function
  • Sensors: in-display fingerprint scanner, accelerometer, proximity, compass
  • Others: Face Unlock
  • Battery: 4,500mAh non-removable Li-Po, supports 18W dual-engine fast charging
  • Colors: Skyline Blue, Diamond Black
  • Price: Php14,999

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