Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro has ruled the Rs 15,000 price segment for a while now. But a new challenger has come and it is called the Vivo Z1 Pro. How does the Vivo Z1 Pro compare to the Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro?
Vivo Z1 Pro HIGHLIGHTS
- This phone is a bit bulky and heavy but boasts of modern design.
- Battery life is a highlight, and general performance is good as well.
- The Vivo Z1 Pro is available in three variants in India.
- The Vivo Z1 Pro comes with a starting price of Rs 14,990.
- The Redmi Note 7 Pro comes for starting price of Rs 13,999.
- Both the Vivo Z1 Pro and the Redmi Note 7 Pro come with gradient design and look slick.
The under Rs 20,000 smartphone segment is extremely crowded in India right now. There is the Redmi Note 7 Pro. There is the Realme 3 Pro. Poco F1 is hovering in this space for months. Now another one enters the segment. It is the Vivo Z1 Pro, which was launched in India earlier this week.
Considering the price and the kind of hardware and feature the Vivo Z1 Pro comes with, it clearly goes against the likes of the Redmi Note 7 Pro. The Vivo Z1 Pro comes with a starting price of Rs 14,990, something close to the starting price of the Redmi Note 7 Pro that sells for Rs 13,999.
As Vivo says, and as we also mentioned in the India Today Tech review of the phone, the Z1 Pro is for the gamers out there who are looking for an affordable gaming-centric smartphone that has a premium looks and a good set of cameras. In comparison, I will say that the Redmi Note 7 Pro is a phone for consumers looking to buy a phone with a great camera under Rs 15,000. Available On Flipkart Buy Now.
Vivo z1 Pro Details
Vivo is one of India’s biggest and most visible smartphone brands, with a massive offline presence across the country. It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of the flash sales and price wars that many brands engage in online, and now Vivo wants to get in on that action with its first “online focused” device, the new Vivo Z1 Pro, which will be sold on Flipkart.
The company is targeting millennial and Gen Z buyers who want good-looking phones with all the latest capabilities, and the Vivo Z1 Pro specifically promises great cameras, battery life, and processing power for games.
The Vivo Z1 Pro is a power-packed smartphone, which comes with a mid-range price tag. The excellent pair of camera setups are the key feature of the device. You can save your unforgettable memories in your smartphone by recording or capturing it. The configuration is also good for handling high-end multitasking with ease. Apart from there, the device has an ample amount of storage and quick-charging along with an excellent battery. All these features, make the device a perfect option to go for.
Display and Design
The Vivo Z1 Pro features an impressive aspect ratio of 19.5:9, which enhances enjoyment while playing games and watching movies. It has a screen resolution of 1,080 x 2,340 pixels over the IPS LCD display type. The high pixel density of 395 PPI makes the viewing experience better. The bezel-less front gets a punch-hole on the top-corner that houses the front camera. All these features are packed in a 6.53-inch screen. Available On Flipkart Buy Now.
Font Camera Design
The camera hole isn’t too big and it isn’t really distracting in everyday use. Vivo shipped us our Z1 Pro review unit with a screen protector attached, and unfortunately this serves to highlight the camera hole with an extra ring around it. The plastic film also picked up a couple of nasty scuffs with ordinary use.
As expected for a sub-Rs 20,000 phone these days, the Vivo Z1 Pro features an eye-catching glossy plastic rear panel with a multi-coloured gradient finish. Our review unit was the Sonic Blue version, which is emerald green at the top fading into cobalt blue at the bottom. The colours are rich and saturated, giving this phone a sort of jewel-tone appearance. It also catches the light as you tilt this phone around. The effect is anything but subtle – the Vivo Z1 Pro is definitely designed to be eye-catching from the front as well as the rear.
The gradient carries over to the frame of this phone, and because it bulges outwards a little, you can see the bright colors around the screen when you’re using the Vivo Z1 Pro. Some might like this, but we think it detracts from the borderless screen look that the company was going for. There’s also a more subtle Sonic Black option.
Back Camera Design
The triple-camera module on the rear sticks out just a little bit and extends to include the flash. There’s also a standard fingerprint sensor on the back of the Vivo Z1 Pro, positioned just slightly out of reach for us. The power and volume buttons are on the right, and there’s a physical Google Assistant button on the left, just below the SIM and microSD card tray.
The Vivo Z1 Pro has two Nano-SIM slots and a separate microSD card slot. The Google Assistant button can’t be reassigned to other functions.
The Vivo Z1 Pro is equipped with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 712 chipset, where an octa-core processor setup containing two Kryo 360 processors (a 2.3GHz dual-core and a 1.7GHz Hexacore)is placed. The setup is further aided by a 4GB RAM that provides the much-required boost to the system while running multiple apps simultaneously. An Adreno 616 GPU takes care of the graphical requirements of the system. Available On Flipkart Buy Now.
The big news with the Vivo Z1 Pro is that this is the first phone in India based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 712 processor. This chip was announced earlier this year as an improvement over the Snapdragon 710, and is built on a 10nm process. It features six 1.7GHz Kryo 360 Silver cores tuned for efficiency and two 2.3GHz Kryo 360 Gold cores for power, along with integrated Adreno 616 graphics and an X15 LTE modem.
Both PUBG Mobile and Asphalt 9: Legends ran smoothly at high settings on the Vivo Z1 Pro and were enjoyable. The phone got only slightly warm.
Vivo is boasting of up to 10 percent better performance than the Snapdragon 710 and 25 percent better performance than the Snapdragon 660. The company is clearly targeting buyers who enjoy digging deep into specifications to make informed purchase decisions.
You have a choice of three variants with the Vivo Z1 Pro: 4GB of RAM with 64GB of storage (Rs. 14,990), 6GB of RAM with 64GB of storage (Rs. 16,990), and 6GB of RAM with 128GB of storage (Rs. 17,990). The screen measures 6.53 inches diagonally and has a full-HD+ 1080×2340 resolution.
The Vivo Z1 Pro also packs a 5000mAh battery and support for Vivo’s own Dual Engine Fast Charging tech. There’s dual-band Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5, along with GPS, but no NFC or FM radio. You get all the usual sensors plus a gyroscope and e-compass.
Vivo z1 Pro Operating System
Vivo’s phones run Funtouch OS, a very heavily modified UI for Android 9. A lot of things are changed around, compared to stock Android, and not all of them for the better. You can read about it in great detail in our recent review of the Vivo Y17, since the experience is pretty much identical on both phones, down to the old-fashioned Android UI navigation buttons and the large number of preinstalled apps. Available On Flipkart Buy Now.
Battery and Camera
The Vivo Z1 Pro is powered by a 5,000mAh Li-ion battery, which offers a healthy period of talk time. It is further equipped with quick-charging that helps to refill the battery at a lightning fast speed. As on the optic front, the device has a triple camera set up at the rear having 16MP, 8MP, and 2MP lenses. There is also a 32MP sensor at the front. Both the camera setups are capable of capturing excellent images and also can record good quality videos as well.
Battery life was also very good. We were able to use the Z1 Pro for over a day and a half, and that involved quite a bit of 4G data use, streaming some video, taking lots of photos, and playing games for about an hour. The Vivo Z1 Pro ran our HD video loop test for 18 hours, 32 minutes before finally shutting down automatically.
The 18W charger included with the Vivo Z1 Pro is very quick, and we were surprised to see Vivo’s Dual Engine Fast Charging kicking in when using third-party chargers as well. However, this phone does get quite warm when charging quickly.
The great thing about competition driving prices down is that today’s budget smartphones have more than enough power for everyday usage situations. We never felt any slowdowns or hesitation when using the Vivo Z1 Pro. Despite its heavy modifications, Funtouch OS did not seem to be causing any performance issues at all. Our review unit was the middle variant with 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage.
The Vivo Z1 Pro’s display is very sharp and legible in all conditions. Viewing angles are great, but we think that some people will find that colors aren’t as vivid as they are on competing phones with AMOLED panels. You can adjust the color temperature and there’s a system-wide dark mode, though not all third-party apps can recognize this and adapt. Available On Flipkart Buy Now.
The status bar at the top of the screen is thick enough to enclose the front camera hole when using the Funtouch OS UI and in most apps that don’t go full-screen. We did find it a little distracting when watching videos on the Vivo Z1 Pro. A quick diagnostic showed that this phone only supports Widevine L3 DRM, which means you can’t stream HD content from services like Netflix.
The single speaker on the bottom of this phone is quite loud, but sound tends to distort at high volume. The bundled headset looks like Apple’s Earpods but the sound is only just about okay for calls. Music sounded hollow and lifeless through it.
The Snapdragon 712 processor gives the Vivo Z1 Pro slight edge on paper and will appeal to those looking for the latest and greatest at this price, but it’s hard to tell how much of a difference it makes with everyday use. Our benchmarks, on the other hand, can help establish that.
The camera dot didn’t interfere with full-screen gaming, as it was nearly always covered by our thumb anyway. It does create a dead zone, and software developers are going to have to work such things into their UIs as this feature becomes more common on phones.
The triple rear camera module consists of a main 16-megapixel camera with an f/1.78 aperture, an 8-megapixel wide-angle camera with an f/2.2 aperture, and a 2-megapixel depth sensor. The single front camera on the Vivo Z1 Pro has a 32-megapixel sensor and f/2.0 aperture.
Vivo’s camera app UI takes a little getting used to. The button to switch between the primary and wide-angle cameras is small and easy to miss. There’s also another toggle to enable depth effects rather than having a separate Portrait mode. We found ourselves having to check both these toggles before taking a shot to avoid using the wrong mode without realizing it. In the video mode, the slow-mo and time lapse options are hidden in a menu in a completely different place.
Night-time performance was also good. Noise was under control and colours weren’t lost, although detail was a little murky on objects at a distance. There was some blur with moving objects, as expected.
Video is unfortunately recorded at 1280×720 by default, and at that resolution it is a little grainy, though at least it’s still bright. You can shoot at up to 4K 30fps with the Vivo Z1 Pro. Vivo doesn’t say anything about video stabilisation on this phone’s spec sheet, and we found that videos recorded while walking were extremely shaky. You can’t switch between the standard and wide-angle lenses while shooting a video.
The front camera takes decent shots, which will be more than enough for people looking to share selfies on social media. There’s no depth effect or portrait mode but you can apply lighting effects, which are somewhat like subtle filters.
Storage and Connectivity
The Vivo Z1 Pro houses a 64GB inbuilt storage, which allows saving multiple application, songs, videos, files, documents, etc. It can be expanded up to 256GB by using a memory card. As for the connectivity, the device comes with all modules that include 4G with VoLTE, Mobile Hotspot, GPS, Bluetooth, micro USB, and Wi-Fi. To enhance the security as well as the convenience, a fingerprint scanner is present at the rear.
Compare The Vivo Z1 Pro And The Redmi Note 7 Pro
First the design. Both the Vivo Z1 Pro and the Redmi Note 7 Pro come with gradient design and look slick. But if you desire a more premium looking phone, the Redmi Note 7 Pro gets an upper hand here and that’s mainly because of the Corning Gorilla Glass 5 body with metal frame. The Vivo Z1 Pro comes with polycarbonate build with metal inserts. The Vivo Z1 Pro is an extremely sturdy, and slightly bulky, smartphone. On the other hand, the Redmi Note 7 Pro is smaller in size and offers a good hand feel and fits well in jean’s pocket. Available On Flipkart Buy Now.
Both the Vivo Z1 Pro and Redmi Note 7 Pro come with a 6.3-inch display. As I also mentioned in the review of the respective phones, the Vivo Z1 Pro’s screen is bright enough in all situations whether you gaze at the display under blazing sunlight or indoor. The Redmi Note 7 Pro, in comparison, comes with a duller display. As I also mentioned in the review of the phone, the screen of the Redmi Note 7 Pro turns out to be adequately bright inside a room but it struggles outdoors. It is worth noting that the next Redmi phone aka Redmi K20 coming to India will use AMOLED panel.
Hardware And Performance
In terms of hardware, both the Redmi Note 7 Pro and the Vivo Z1 Pro are pretty competitive. The Redmi Note 7 Pro is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 processor while the Vivo Z1 Pro is the first smartphone to come with Snapdragon 712 processor. The Redmi Note 7 Pro is a good phone for multi-tasking. In other words, the Redmi Note 7 Pro is a good option for people like me who wants to use social media apps, click pictures, chat, watch Netflix and do very little work on the phone. However, if you are an avid gamer, the Vivo Z1 Pro will have an upper hand.