Last year we got an early look at the highly impressive Vivo X51, a genuinely exciting new 5G-ready mobile phone device on the market (full review here). Today, we stay with the upcoming Vivo and assess another intriguing phone in their range, the Vivo Y70.
As a quick oversight, here at Critical Popcorn I try and look at new gadgets and tech from a different viewpoint than usual. While it’s extremely easy to get lost amongst the technical, and in a world that offers a seemingly never-ending and ever-changing world of options, I appreciate it can feel like you’ve got a mountain of decisions when it comes to upgrading or moving in a new direction with your phone. While Vivo are new to the UK market, they’re already collecting encouraging feedback and if you’re within a certain price-bracket, then this is a steady purchase.
The Y70 works on the Android operating system on your phone, where iOS is usually Apple, and I’m 100% behind Android for numerous reasons. One of the big ones is price, and with phones like this from Vivo it becomes hugely affordable to get something decent, and you won’t be breaking the bank. I also find Android are more individual and reflect your own personality better, because you can setup your phone the way you want it to be, rather than the likes of Apple limiting you to certain setups. Having used all kinds of phones from HTC to Samsung, I’ve recently settled down with Huawei and now Vivo are really pushing those bigger names around them.
Design and first impressions
The reason I’m highlighting the Vivo Y70 today is because its first impressions are positive ones. I’ve been a fan of Samsung’s style in the past and this isn’t too far off looking as strong as their designs. As most do, you’ve got a small selection in colour on the back of the phone, this one I’m reviewing is Oxygen Blue (which is roughly a faded silver), with Gravity Black another choice. The Y70 is simple to setup, features a large, sharp display (which we’ll come back to in a bit) and looks more expensive than its price tag. It’s got one small front selfie camera, and three on the back for different shot styles. Sure, it’s not mind-blowing but it does what it needs to do, and fits the world around camera phones of this ilk.
Here’s where you’re really winning with the Y70, as the device for the price excels with its wonderfully bright 6.44-inch screen that’s covers the entire front of the phone. It’s an AMOLED screen, which means you’re getting something more than other phones in a similar price range that don’t utilise this tech.
Your contrast is colourful, and you’ve got the ‘Eye Protection’ option, which I personally use to shift that blue/white screen vibe into a more yellow edge, which I find is a lot better for the eyes. It’s also got a ‘dark theme’ if that fits your style! I also didn’t find any issues with web content or photo viewing; they look as good and bright as you’d want.
It’s funny how we don’t really talk about actual calls on a phone anymore, because any phone should be good enough, but I must focus on external speakers for all the obvious reasons. While I don’t personally play music out loud directly from my phone, I’m not that generation and never enjoyed the echoey, tinny sound that resonate from songs you love. However, here YouTube or TikTok can be utilized and the sound of songs like Lana Del Rey’s Chemtrails over the Country Club worked perfectly well with the video. Generally, I’d recommend using Bluetooth to connect to some wireless earphones (check out the Urbanista’s for another affordable earphone set) or connecting to an external speaker – either the new 4th Gen Echo Dot or Majority K2 Soundbar works – to really get the depth of any song.
The Y70 will cover your everyday photographic needs but if you’re looking for something sharper, with more options, then check out Vivo’s X51 if you’re looking to be extraordinary. The Vivo Y70 doesn’t have photography as its sharpest option, and this is somewhat of a disappointment in the range. However, it’s impressive for portrait shots of animals close-up, and similar.. as you’ll below:
If I’m honest, I still think all mobile phones still suffer with photography and this is because the lens size is so small, you can only get so much light in there when it’s that compact.. The Y70 team have hit a snag by not including an ultra-wide framing option, which surprised me, as that’s reasonably standard these days. While you’ve also got three cameras, only one of those has the power with a zoom in option, so it might depend on how important that is to you.
Summary and Positive Discoveries
If you’re looking for a slim and solid phone, then the Y70 hits that bracket easily. It’s also winning when it comes to that AMOLED display, so if a visual thing is what you’re after, you’ll be incredibly pleased with the quality in that aspect. Another big bonus is how good the battery life is on the Vivo Y70, it lasts very well (4100mAh Battery) and has a 33W flash charger, meaning you get it back to full life very quickly should you need that – especially good if you’re out and about a lot, when we can properly, of course!
I also liked the lack of random programs and excessive extra software when you first set it up. Many phones are packed with pointless apps you can’t get rid of easily, but this Android offers you the opportunity to use it as you want to. So, while the camera lacks (and no ultra-zoom is a problem Vivo must fix next time out), and design isn’t mind-blowing but if you’re after something honest and uncomplicated, then this should hit the spot, and for a great price right now.