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Vivo Y17 First Impressions: Well-packaged deal
Vivo Y17 is priced at Rs. 17,990 in the Indian market. The smartphone offers triple-lens camera, big battery unit and massive 128GB internal memory.
Vivo as a smartphone brand has grown exponentially in the last two years. The company has been putting a lot of efforts in bringing new innovative smartphones. Vivo X21, Vivo Nex/Nex 2, Vivo V15 Pro, etc. are some examples of the company's innovative offerings that managed to set a reference for other smartphone manufacturers.
Recently, we came across a report that Vivo has recorded a staggering annual growth of 108.2% in mobile shipments in the Indian market. Even though Vivo still has to do a lot to replace Samsung and Xiaomi in the overall market share, these numbers are very promising and shows good growth in the remaining two quarters of the ongoing year.
Vivo's high sales in India are mostly derived from the affordable 'Y' series smartphones. The company has recently added a new smartphone in the Y series portfolio. Priced at Rs. 17,990, Vivo Y17 targets consumers who want a well-rounded package in sub 18k price category. Vivo has thrown in a massive 5,000 mAh battery unit, lots of storage, triple-lens camera setup and a 20MP selfie camera. The on-paper specs look quite promising but do these actually translate to a good real-life performance? Let's find out.
Design and Display
Vivo Y17 offers a very basic yet functional design. The smartphone is slightly heftier (190g) than other handsets in its respective price-point due to bigger 5,000 mAh battery cell. The front is occupied by a big 6.35-inch HD+ (720x1544) LCD display. The waterdrop notch screen has a 19.3:9 aspect ratio and delivers 89 percent screen-to-body ratio, as claimed by Vivo. The display is bright, offers decent viewing angles but fails to offer the best-in-class pixel density.
The company has only offered an HD+ resolution, whereas most of the handsets in this price-point offer 1080p Full HD+ resolution panels. While the HD+ resolution helps in improving battery life, it fails to offer the crispness and clarity of a full HD+ screen. If a crisp 1080p screen is your priority, there are plenty of smartphones in the market with full HD+ panels. The list includes- Realme 3 Pro, Redmi Note 7/Note 7 Pro, OPPO K1, Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2, Galaxy M30, etc.
Dedicated microSD card slot but dated microUSB 2.0 port
While the Y17 fails to offer a full HD+ panel, it brings in a dedicated microSD card slot to solve your storage issues. The hybrid SIM card tray placed at the left edge house three slots wherein you can put two nano SIM cards and one memory card to expand the internal 128GB to another 256GB. This would suffice for most of the users who don't like to keep a check on apps and media files stored on their handset.
Vivo Y17 also offers 4G VoLTE on both the SIM slots but sadly, the smartphone ships with the dated microUSB 2.0 charging port. You do get fast-charging via 18W power adaptor bundled in the phone's box. The 3.5mm headphone jack is placed at the bottom along with a microphone, mono speaker unit and the charging port. The power button and volume rockers are placed on the right side.
The rear side of the handset offers a glossy finish which is prone to smudges. The fingerprint scanner is conveniently placed at the centre and a triple-lens camera setup placed in vertical fashion inside bronze colored ring on the top-left corner. The rear panel looks quite minimal, yet eye-catchy. Vivo Y17 will be available in two color variants- Mineral Blue and Mystic Purple.
5,000 mAh battery unit
Where Vivo Y17 really shines is the battery life. The smartphone is backed by a massive 5,000 mAh battery unit, which can last upto two days even with a heavy usage. As the battery only has to supply power to a 720p panel, the handsets can survive long media-streaming tasks. The bundled 18W charger in the package helps you quickly refuel the battery cell.
Triple-lens rear camera setup
Vivo Y17 is the first handset in the company's ‘Y' series to offer a triple-lens camera setup. In addition to the 13MP primary sensor and 2MP depth-sensor, the phone also features an 8MP wide-angle lens. This makes Vivo Y17 an interesting proposition in the sub 20K price-point for camera enthusiasts. The 8MP wide-angle shots lack detailing in indoor-lighting; however with ample light available for the sensor, the camera can deliver decent wide-angle shots (120 degree FOV) to add a new perspective to pictures.
The camera performance on Vivo Y17 seems pretty decent in our initial testing. The 2MP depth-sensor also managed to create a pleasing bokeh effect on non-human subjects. For selfies, Vivo Y17 features a 20MP front-facing camera that works on f/2.0 aperture. On the software side, the camera offers software-driven portrait mode, AI face beauty, etc. We will spend some more time with Y17 to evaluate its camera performance in detail.
Not the best gaming device in sub 18k price-point
Vivo Y17 is backed by a MediaTek Helip P35 CPU. The octa-core chipset is technically not as powerful as what competitors are offering. It however serves well for daily routine tasks. The CPU is paired with 4GB RAM to handle multitasking. We are yet to run our usual benchmarking tests on MTK P35 to test its complete potential. One thing you must know that this phone is not the best option in the market for most immersive gameplay experience.
Vivo's FunTouch over Android Pie
For software, Vivo Y17 runs the company's Funtouch OS 9, based on Android 9.0. The customized skin offers an Ultra gaming mode, gestures, battery saving modes, gestures, amongst other useful software features. Vivo's UI is quite feature-rich but it's not going to please you if you love stock Android user-experience.
As far as connectivity is concerned, the smartphone offers microUSb 2.0 port, Bluetooth 5.0, 3.5mm headphone jack, FM Radio, dual 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi, A-GPS, GLONASS, and USB on-the-go.
Vivo Y17 is quite a feature-packed offering in sub 20K price-segment. The smartphone offers a number of useful features that makes it a well-packaged deal in its particular price-segment. These include- a massive battery unit, dedicated microSD card slot, feature-rich camera and good internal storage. There are some shortcomings also, like the dated microUSB 2.0 charging port, low-resolution display, and less powerful CPU as compared to what the competitors has to offer in this segment. We will spend some more time with the Y17 to test its computing, multitasking and camera performance. Stay tuned for our comprehensive review of the smartphone.