Vivo X Fold Hands-On: Foldable can actually have a good camera

Whenever a new technology is in its infancy, it is always interesting to see the trajectory of innovation in which products provide an ideal design. In the case, the Vivo X Fold introduces another amazingly large foldable phone that destroys Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 3 in almost every way. Still, there’s almost no universe where it’s almost sold out as well as a foldable animal from Samsung.

This is also a real shame, because the Vivo X Fold is easily the best foldable phone (opens in a new tab) I can imagine using technology at this juncture. The interior crease isn’t as “non-existent” as the OPPO Find N (opens in a new tab), but it’s a much nicer design from the hinges of Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 3 (opens in a new tab). Also, it’s a completely flat fold, which is always an excellent technique.

Couples with some really spectacular cameras around the back – there’s even a periscope camera for great zoom details – and you’ll understand why Vivo’s first major foldable phone is a real winner. I’ve spent the last two weeks with it and, although it’s not a complete review because it’s basically a region-specific product, it has left a lasting impression on me that I must talk about.

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I’ve used a lot of foldable phones at the moment, but so far no one has tried to reverse the “skin” trend from past smartphones. In fact, it was one of the first things about the Vivo X Fold that I brought it out of the box, as it was unveiled like all the other foldable phones.

There’s something special about that gripy, textured leather that I can’t get enough of. Heck, so I slapped a cow with DBrand leather skin in my Z Fold 3 (opens in new tab).

The camera module in the Vivo X Fold is significantly larger than the three separate modules Samsung chose for the Z Fold 3, but the hump doesn’t extend much beyond Samsung’s design. It has also grown closer to the center, which means the phone can’t shake too much when using an external display while resting on a table.

Mobile NameVivo X Fold hands-on
Display6.53 inches
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1
Memory12GB RAM
Storage256 / 512GB
Rear Camera50PM / 12MP / 8MP / 48MP
Front Camera16MP
Battery4,600mAh

The downside of teardrop hinges is that they are not water or dust resistant, so the decision to use the wrong leather on the back is vivo. At the moment, it seems you either have to decide between water resistance, or a crease on the foldable phone.

While we’re still debating the issue, Vivo went the OPPO route and chose a more “normal” ratio for the external display in the Vivo X fold. I like the Z Fold 3 for a number of reasons – and one of them is to offer a narrow external display in one-handed – but typing on that slender external display is a half pain.

Unfortunately, for folding enthusiasts, getting your hands on a Vivo X fold isn’t the easiest or cheapest thing in the world if you’re not in China. Like OPPO Find N, Vivo X isn’t planning a big international release for Fold, and that’s really a big shame.

While the Vivo X Fold doesn’t make Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 3 one-of-a-kind in every way – two notable exceptions are the lack of water resistance and no support for any kind of stylus – it significantly improves Samsung’s hardware experience. Better camera, a reduced display crease, full flat folding ability and a few highlights on the back of that beautiful imitation leather, not to mention the change in screen size and shape ratio as opposed to folds.

At times, we’ll have more foldables readily available for people to buy, but for now, it’s great to see more excellent devices make their way into the market – although that availability is quite limited in scope.

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