Vivo NEX Review: A Full Screen Smartphone Without Notch and With A Retractable Selfie Camera


Needless to reiterate it because 2018 is the year of smartphones with a completely borderless display, that is without any frame. An important innovation that has always seemed to have strongly affected the development and design of the Vivo smartphones that with its new NEX could have reached its peak. Yes, because with Vivo NEX all sorts of notches disappear, that annoying bezel at the top of the display and the frames are reduced even more.

Today we will do the review of this smartphone and find out how did the phone perform in all aspects after a week? Can we surprise us again? No matter how late, we immediately began the detailed review of Vivo NEX Ultimate. Before the start of our review, firstly we will understand the following hardware configuration:

Like the previous high-end flagship Smartphone of Vivo, the company used the most advanced hardware configuration of industry in NEX (Ultimate). Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor coupled with 8GB RAM with  128GB and 256GB internal storage, these common hardware configurations in the current mainstream flagship are not absent in the Vivo NEX (Ultimate). In addition, the Vivo Nex has an 8MP “Pop Up” front camera while the rear 12MP + 5MP vertically aligned dual camera and it is equipped with a 4000mAh battery that supports up to 22.5W dual engine fast charge.

Design and Appearance

Vivo NEX can leave a deep impression on the appearance, the biggest “responsible” than this 6.59-inch “zero boundary full screen”. In terms of craftsmanship, Vivo performed an ultra-narrowing process on the borders of Nex screen. In theoretical parameters, the width of the left and right borders of the screen was only 1.21 mm, and the screen ratio of the whole screen reached a staggering 91.24%.

However, in the current market, the number of smartphones that emphasize “super-high-screen ratio” is innumerable. In order to make the display area of ?? the screen as large as possible, Smartphone manufacturers have racked their brains to use the screen with a higher ratio in the screen of their own products. And curved screens, even shifting the sensor layout to achieve a closer “full” display.

However, the receiver and the sensor openings are always the “Buster” of the screen ratio. In fact, the solution to the “full screen” problem of mobile phones is more like solving the question of “where the handset and sensor should be placed”. Otherwise, whether it is a screen that occupies a higher proportion, it is only a compromise to the traditional layout.

On Vivo NEX, Company hides the sensor elements that are essential to the front of the smartphone and hides it on the bottom of the screen (yes, the light distance sensor is also hidden). Therefore, the annoying part of the “bangs” that was seen on the shaped screen also disappeared. Compared to the curved screen, the top frame of the screen also eliminated the opening of various sensors, resulting in a more pure and uniform Visual design.

At this point, the Vivo NEX screen, which accounts for 91.24% of the screen, should be one of the products that are currently the closest to the “full screen” category. After the cancellation of the traditional handset opening, a new “full-screen vocalization technology” was replaced.

Compared to the “cantilever piezoceramic” and “piezoelectric ceramic” solutions that have been used on other Smartphones in the past, the Vivo NEX uses micro-vibration unit sounding technology. In simple terms, the principle is to relatively narrow the scope of sound vibrations, and more focused, in order to provide a better sense of hearing, but also to avoid the whole piece of screen vibration caused by the “leakage” situation.

In fact, in addition to the necessary handset and light distance sensors for smartphones, “how should the front camera be placed?” will often become the most intractable place for high-proportion screens.

In this regard, Vivo NEX uses a “Pop-Up front camera” design. In fact, this solution has already seen in the Vivo APEX concept phone as early as the beginning of the year. However, as a production model, the NEX application technology is more mature. The Pop-Up front camera is made of stainless steel and its reliability and durability have been further enhanced.

When you need to use the front camera, the camera module will automatically rise, will automatically go down after use, when the camera rises and falls will also provide optional sound effects, slightly mechanical sense of BGM enhances the lift from the hearing the texture of the camera.

Vivo NEX Ultimate Review: A veritable "Future flagship"

When using the Vivo NEX, we found a detail – when the camera is in the rising state, the mobile phone accidentally drops, the front camera will automatically fall back to its position in response to the pressure, and the corresponding camera interface will also be closed/switched accordingly.

Vivo NEX Ultimate Review: A veritable "Future flagship"

However, there is a need to remind everyone that regardless of whether it is considering a full range of hardware equipment, it will certainly cause damage to the internal mechanical structure when it encounters forced resistance. Therefore, in daily use, we suggest that you should cherish your own mobile phone as much as possible to avoid unnecessary accidents and equipment damage.

Recalling the product, Vivo NEX’s Pop-Up front camera does bring a certain freshness. The process of lifting and lowering the module is only within 1 second, and it is almost seamless with the speed of the camera interface opening/switching. While realizing the zero boundary full screen, the usability of the front camera is also guaranteed. Vivo official stated that the data measured in the laboratory is “the front camera has continuously raised and lowered 50,000 times without any problem.

The Vivo NEX does not have face unlock function. However, in the Vivo NEX this “future” phone, Vivo still come up with their own “good job” – equipped with a third-generation screen fingerprint recognition technology. Compared to the previous generation, the new technology has improved both in recognition rate and speed.

After speaking positively, it’s time to flip over the phone and talk about the back of the Vivo NEX

Although Vivo has shown a lot of muscle on the front of this phone, but the back of the fuselage in the continuation of the X21 design, but also on the basis of the diamond black color, joined the “holographic illusion process”, showing that has been friends It is called “multicolored black” that will never be realized. When the glass body is light-mapped, a glass-like illusion effect will appear on the glass surface, thus forming a beautiful artistic feeling.

The bottom of the fuselage is equipped with a Type-C charging port and a SIM card slot, and the audio jack is located at the top of the body. The power button and volume rocker are placed on the left side.

Interestingly, Vivo added Nex’s AI artificial intelligence assistant Jovi’s physical wake-up button to this phone. Long press the button to evoke Jovi’s intelligent voice assistant.

Hardware Configuration

This Vivo NEX is divided into two versions: “Standard ” and “Ultimate”.

In terms of parameters, the “Standard Edition” has Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 with 6GB RAM and 128GB (UFS 2.1) internal storage; this top-of-the-line “Ultimate” version powered by Snapdragon 845 coupled with 8GB RAM and 256GB onboard storage, The configuration lineup of storage space (UFS 2.1) is also one of the few 8GB Smartphones currently on the market.

Of course, the Vivo NEX “Ultimate” also offers an optional 128GB onboard storage. The difference between the price and the 256GB version is 500 yuan. However, since the mobile phone does not support memory card expansion, we suggest that users with larger storage requirements should choose the top version.

Although the collocation of Xiaolong 845 + 8GB is already the top configuration in current smartphones, its performance is naturally unquestionable. However, according to the usual example, we will simply run a few points through several test software to see how the actual gaming experience of the mobile phone is.

In actual tests, the Antutu score of Vivo NEX is 287,000, which was excellent in the same positioning of the flagship Smartphone. In the following GeekBench 4.2 tests, the Vivo NEX’s Snapdragon 845 great performance, with a single-core score is 2403 and a multi-core test score is 8216, which is also relatively a high score.

Finally, in the test of 3D Mark (OpenGL ES 3.1), Vivo NEX also scored 4590 points, ranking the top three in the official rankings.

After benchmarking test, we will take a look at the actual experience. In terms of game testing, we have selected two popular online games such as “The Jedi Survival: Stimulating the Battlefield” and “The King’s Glory” to experience the actual test.

In the “Stimulus” “HDR HD” picture quality, “super high” frame settings, the game can run at 40fps, overall it is smooth. When I reduce the picture quality effect by one step, the frame rate of the picture could be increased to 55fps. At this time, our observation has reached a relatively smooth running level.

Since “Jedi for survival” can be run smoothly under the highest quality conditions, “The Glory of the King” should not be under the NEX.

Through the game’s own frame rate display and GameBench evaluation software, we can see that in the 22-minute test time, the Vivo NEX can keep running smoothly at 60fps for most of the time. Although there are slight fluctuations in the number of picture frames in some scenes, the effect of these fluctuations on the game experience itself is not obvious.

After 40 minutes of game testing, I took a temperature gun to test the temperature of the phone.

According to the measured results, after 40 minutes of gameplay, the phone’s heat position is concentrated in the upper rear part of the body, the temperature is between 35 and 37 Celsius, and the screen part of the heat is relatively low For 33 Celsius. In long-term operation under high-pressure conditions, Vivo NEX can also keep the temperature of the phone within the body temperature.

According to the Vivo official introduction, this has benefited from a set of “zero-sensor cooling system” added to this Vivo NEX. As the name suggests, this system is designed to allow the phone to have better internal temperature control, so that the phone can heat quickly in the long-term gameplay. Of course, even if the mobile phone has a good gaming experience, we still don’t recommend that players play long games. After all, proper rest is still very important.

It is worth mentioning that in addition to the necessary hardware configuration, the Vivo NEX gaming experience has also been optimized in both hardware and software.

In terms of hardware, in addition to the previous “zero-touch cooling system”, Vivo also aimed at the influence of player’s signal on the phone when the screen is held horizontally. The antenna layout of Vivo NEX was redesigned so as to avoid the occlusion of the player’s palm in order to bring about more.

Stronger and more stable transmission capability. At the same time, Vivo also uses 4 x 4 MIMO multi-antenna technology in the antenna part of NEX to ensure the network reliability of online games during operation, and the more they are in poor signals, the more they can demonstrate their advantages.

At the software level, Vivo introduced the “game mode 4.0” system. In addition to being able to adapt the screen to the full-screen operation, the game also supports the Do Not Disturb mode, automatic rejection of incoming calls, muted notifications, call suspension windows, and social networking tools such as picture-in-picture.

In addition, the system has also added new features such as e-sports mode, on-hook mode, and network optimization. Players can open and use them as needed. At the end of the performance review session, let everyone make a short preview – soon, we will conduct a more in-depth review of the game performance of Vivo NEX. Users interested in this phone may wish to continue to pay attention.

Of course, no matter how strong the performance or good experience, under the premise of these advantages, it is necessary to have a reliable endurance to maintain the operation of the phone. Let’s take a look at the performance of the Vivo NEX in life. Thanks to the larger internal space in the fuselage, Vivo NEX’s battery capacity reaches 4000mAh.

Here, first praise NEX, because compared to its current flagship, 4000mAh is already a relatively high capacity value, and deal with the moderate and heavy use of the day. Vivo NEX comes standard with a three-band charging head with 5V/2A, 9V/2A, 10V/2.25A output power, and can provide up to 22.5W power for dual-engine fast charging.

After exhausting the battery, I performed a charge test

Starting at 20:15, I started to charge the Vivo NEX. At this time, the battery power showed 2% and entered the “twin-engine fast charge” charging mode. After 20 minutes at 30 minutes, the battery power was 55%. A slight warm temperature appears on the back of the phone, but the heat is within an acceptable range (about 35 Celsius).

Finally, at 21:48, the battery is displayed at 100%. After the charging is completed, the mobile phone automatically exits the “Double Engine Quick Charge” mode.

From the measured results, the Vivo NEX took 2 hours to 100% of the total time required for charging 1 hour and 33 minutes, which is the normal time-consuming of the flagship phone. However, considering that the NEX is equipped with a 4000mAh battery instead of the usual 3500mAh content, we also concluded that under the “double-engine fast charge,” the phone’s charging efficiency does have Significantly improved.

AI scene camera, “White” can also shot good photos

Although Vivo didn’t use too much space to introduce the camera function of Vivo NEX at this conference, the camera’s configuration in the camera actually has many remarkable places.

The Pop-Up front camera called the Vivo NEX “signature” is actually an 8MP with f/2.0 aperture CMOS. In addition to supporting the features of Vivo’s main backlighting, beauty, and portrait background blur, Vivo also added several new features like AI and AI filters in this update.

Of course, the front is good, but we can’t ignore its dual rear camera

Vivo NEX has equipped with a set of 12MP+ 5MP dual cameras. The specific parameters, the main camera is our recent common Sony IMX 363 CMOS, equipped with f/1.8 aperture, a single pixel area of ??1.4µm, supports dual-core focus, OIS four-axis optical image stabilization, and EIS electronic image stabilization.

The AI ?? scene camera can automatically identify and automatically optimize the shooting scenario using AI technology according to the object that the user is shooting and the scene environment.

In simple terms, it is to enable “white” users to easily take good photos. In contrast, Jovi’s vision is based on the support of AI technology to intelligently identify the target object and reach relevant links. It is also a convenient function item.

Let’s take a look at the camera samples of Vivo NEX

The daytime performance of the Vivo NEX camera was good. The retention of the picture details and the control of purple fringing were all very good. Even after many zooming in, the influence of purple fringe on the picture is very low. The restoration of colors is also possible. In a cloud environment, the highlights will lose some small details. It is also normal. In addition, Vivo now has a new HDR technology, and the screen will be better processed after opening.

In macro shooting, Vivo NEX can retain details of objects. Focusing is more accurate and the details of the item are retained. The metering strategy of the whole device will be polarized, and it is a good thing to make the shooting picture brighter. However, in some cases, if you want to retain details of highlights, you must manually press the light.

This feature of the bright screen continued into the night scene. Even at nighttime, the samples of the Vivo NEX are relatively light, and the pictures are not clean without much color noise. But if you look closely, you can see the side effects of digital smearing. The smearing of the picture is a bit strong, and there are many white noises in the details. The details of target highlights are a bit unnatural.

Here we will tell more about my AI Jovi

Time flies quickly, Vivo’s Funtouch OS system has unknowingly developed to version 4.0. As one of the oldest users of Funtouch OS, recalling the scene when I first touched this system in the past, I still remember it as if it happened last month.

This Vivo NEX is equipped with Funtouch OS 4.0 system based on Android 8.1 depth customization. In this version of the system update, Vivo added and optimized the system’s main style, full-screen interaction, and Jovi’s artificial intelligence assistant. The design language of the icon of the new system is still based on the colorful round rectangle, but compared to the previous version, each icon seems to have become more “full”.

According to Vivo’s presentation at the conference, the Funtouch OS 4.0 is powered by a newly designed Energy UI system. In addition, the icons that can be dynamically displayed when the application is turned on and off, the system automatically uses the wallpaper according to the wallpaper. The color tone adjusts the color style of the icon to provide a more comfortable visual experience for the user.

Vivo NEX Ultimate Review: A veritable "Future flagship"

Since Funtouch OS 4.0 is already deeply customized on Android 8.1, plus the optimization of the system’s Funtouch system in application scheduling, we should not worry too much about system performance.

In the actual test, we have continuously loaded 10 apps in the background (weChat, Weibo, Thunder download, Taobao, etc.), and at the same time load the “Glory of the Kings” at the front desk. From the test data, the game can still be multi-tasking. The state runs smoothly at 56fps.

Vivo NEX Ultimate Review: A veritable "Future flagship"

Here I attach a tip, combined with the system’s “picture-in-picture” application of the double-open function, when the game is running can simultaneously open WeChat and QQ chat, do not need to switch back and 4th between applications in a reply.

In the previous Vivo X21, the company has added AI artificial intelligence assistant Jovi in ?? the Funtouch OS system. After half a year’s development, this Vivo has fully optimized Jovi’s human-machine speech interaction in the Funtouch OS 4.0 system.

In the previous “Look Out” section, I mentioned that the Vivo NEX is equipped with a separate button for exhaling Jovi’s voice assistant, which is the most used Jovi exhalation method during this experience time. But in fact, in addition to being able to wake up Jovi via a physical button, speaking a specific or custom wake-up word can also wake up Jovi by voice.

In the system settings, the system provides two options: “Small V” and “Hi, Jovi”. Of course, if you think these two wake-up words are too hard to remember, you can also customize the wake-up words of 4~6 Chinese characters. The updated Jovi Voice Assistant, in addition to being able to open applications via voice, can also exercise command control over mainstream applications.

Vivo NEX Ultimate Review: A veritable "Future flagship"

This feature is especially useful when I’m driving. For example, when I was driving on a freeway and I received a short message that required an immediate reply, I could directly control Jovi’s reply to me by voice, or help me save key information and let me know when it was convenient. Let’s say, for example, When I need to make a phone call while driving, I only need to say “Jovi, call me to call XX” to complete what was originally required to stop.

Vivo NEX Ultimate Review: A veritable "Future flagship"

In fact, Jovi is also a reliable life assistant in daily life. When I want to send a WeChat payment to my partners, I just need to say “Hi Jovi, send a $100 to XXX” on the mobile phone. Jovi will automatically open the WeChat for me, find the contact and enter the amount. After I confirm the information is correct, you can confirm the sending. From the moment I say the command for the execution of the system, the whole process takes less than 15 seconds, which is a lot easier than clicking a button step by step.

In addition, Jovi can help me send money, but also help me search for maps, merchandise, and even takeaways. For example, after exhaling Jovi, I say “I want to buy a keyboard from JD” or “I want to order a McDonald’s takeout.” Jovi will help me automatically enter the relevant program, fill in the search bar, show that I want Content.

Vivo NEX Ultimate Review: A veritable "Future flagship"

A number of similar applications are installed in a mobile phone. I believe that it should be more than me. When I install more than one e-commerce platform or map program in my phone, Jovi will pop up options before searching. For example, when I say “Is Far away from me?”, the system will pop up the installed map program for me to choose. After I click, the system will enter the program to search.

However, it should be noted that although Jovi’s AI independent button is set as globally available by default, Jovi will give a command in the lock screen state and Jovi will allow the user to unlock it before proceeding to the next step. The most interesting is that Jovi also provides command learning function, users can customize the command details according to their own needs; at the same time, users can also download the voice commands shared by other users to Jovi’s “Command Square”.

With the AI ?? system’s algorithm, Jovi can use the camera to identify objects. For example, when I want to understand this product but I don’t know its name, I just need to photograph it and Jovi will help me identify product related information. Or, I would like to buy this display that I saw in the coffee shop. I can also search for information about the product and buy links through Jovi.

In our daily work, we often encounter situations where some posters or business cards need to be entered into mobile phones and converted into text. At this point, we can pick up the text using Jovi’s text recognition function. AI will provide word segmentation for selection in the system after identifying the target.

For English words, the system provides a second split function; after selecting the desired word, we can translate, search, share, and place the phrase directly into the memo function.

Vivo NEX Ultimate Review: A veritable "Future flagship"

Jovi’s recognition of textual information is not limited to the outside world. Messages in mobile phones can also be split and saved. After opening the “Split Screen,” long press the message to split and save the content. For content that contains geographic information and time, AI will also provide special storage options for these key information. Personally, think that this feature can help me save a lot of steps to set reminders.

Finally, Jovi also provides AI search capabilities for student users who are dealing with a large number of jobs. After adjusting the mobile phone to Jovi’s smart search function, the system will search for related solutions on the Internet. Rough calculations, from search to answer, took only less than a minute.


As a powerful masterpiece of Vivo in 2018, it is also the top flagship of Vivo “future” development. This Vivo NEX has superior design and hardware configuration with its advanced styling and the high-end blessing of Snapdragon 845 with 8GB RAM. At the same time, we have achieved the standard of the current top flagship mobile phones and once again successfully refreshed our impression of Vivo Smartphones.

Speaking of the impression, in fact, during the week of experiencing this product, the most important thing that Vivo NEX experienced for me was Vivo’s consideration of product details. For example, adding a “colorful” refraction effect in the back of the black body, “a Pop-Up type” front camera’s press-buffer, multiple operation methods for a full-screen gesture, and more for the game experience. Item optimization and more.

Of course, Vivo NEX is the beginning of “future” of Vivo and it is also a summary of its technology sedimentation. It has an almost impeccable configuration. Regardless of the standard version and the Top version, the cool enough “zero boundary full screen” and “Pop-Up front camera” all solve the current controversial “bangs” problem; coupled with its hardware configuration and system optimization, let players Indulge in a “battlefield” experience on this 6.59-inch screen. In general, with innovative styling, top-level hardware configuration, mature system optimization system and blessing of AI artificial intelligence engine, Vivo NEX distance has become a market-recognized product, and in fact, only time is left.

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