After skipping the X70 model in India last year, Vivo decided to launch the new X80 in 2022. Launched alongside the flagship Vivo X80 Pro, this phone introduces new and interesting hardware that should help it stand out in the sub-Rs. 60,000 price segment. In terms of positioning, the Vivo X80 is a successor to the Vivo X70 Pro and not the X70, as the name might lead you to believe. The X80 may lack certain features of the X70 Pro, such as a periscopic telephoto camera, but at a starting price of Rs. 54,999, it features other upgrades that could make it a solid all-rounder.
One of the headliners is the MediaTek Dimensity 9000 SoC, making its debut with the Vivo X80 in India. This is a major upgrade over the previous generation and makes this phone look as powerful on paper as any other 2022 flagship in its segment. This 4nm SoC runs at a maximum clock speed of 3.05GHz, and the rest of its specs indicate that it will be similar to the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 SoC, which the X80 Pro uses.
The Vivo X80 has been launched in two variants. The base version has 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage and costs Rs. 54,999. The second variant has 12 GB of RAM and 256 GB of storage and costs Rs. 59,999.
Vivo has also integrated its new V1+ image processor into the X80 to speed up compute-intensive tasks such as processing photos in night mode in the camera app and interpolating frames while playing games. Vivo also claims that the X80 has the largest single-chamber vapor cooling system on any smartphone in India. In theory, this phone should offer a premium gaming experience, and I will test these claims in the review. After using the phone for a few days, I can say that the cooling system may have helped to some extent, as the camera app didn’t give any overheating warnings when recording videos despite the body getting hot.
In terms of design, the phone is very similar to the Vivo X80 Pro and the X70 Pro+ from last year (Review). The only visual difference between the X80 and the X80 Pro is the missing periscopic camera on the former. Everything else, including the ports and speaker grilles placement, is identical. Vivo has also given the X80 an official IP53 rating, which is not often found in smartphones in this segment.
The Vivo X80 has an aluminum alloy frame sandwiched between two panes of glass with curved sides. The back panel uses fluorite AG glass and has a matte finish that seems good at rejecting fingerprints. I got a unit in the Urban Blue finish, which looks fresh and stands out. The overall fit and finish of the X80 feel very premium and don’t feel too heavy either, weighing in at 206g.
The Vivo X80 has a 6.78-inch E5 AMOLED display, but it isn’t based on LTPO technology like the more expensive X80 Pro. It has full HD+ resolution, a maximum refresh rate of 120 Hz, and a maximum touch sample rate of 240 Hz. My first impression of playing Call of Duty: Mobile on the X80 was good, as the game ran smoothly without any hiccups. However, I’ll be testing this further to check the continued performance of this new gaming SoC in the full review. The screen is protected by Schott’s Xensation Up glass, which turned out to be a fingerprint magnet during my first use. The Vivo X80 has dual stereo speakers, something the X70 Pro lacked.
As for the cameras, the Vivo X80 introduces Sony’s new 50-megapixel IMX866 sensor with an RGBW pixel arrangement and Optical Image Stabilization (OIS). Vivo claims this allows for greater light sensitivity for better photos and video in low light, something I’ll test in our review. The X80 also has a 12-megapixel portrait camera and a 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera, neither of which has OIS.
Like the Vivo X80 Pro, the X80 also has the camera app’s new Zeiss-branded Video Styles feature. With the unique cinematic video style, you can record video in a 2.39:1 cinematic aspect ratio and add oval highlights in the background. The Camera Panning style for photos is also new and lets you add motion blur to the knowledge of subjects that are still or in motion.
A 32-megapixel camera handles selfies on the Vivo X80. Vivo has also brought the Cinematic Style feature to photo mode, allowing you to shoot pictures with a wider aspect ratio and software-controlled background flares.
My first impressions of the cameras on the Vivo X80 are that they seem very capable. The detail and dynamic range are quite good. Digital zooming diminishes facts, but I’ll save my conclusions for the full review. What I missed was a telephoto camera to take portrait photos.
The Vivo X80 has a 4,500 mAh battery that can be charged quickly with the included 80 W charger. There is no wireless charging, which in my opinion, is a big miss, as smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G (Review) and even the Apple iPhone SE (2022) (Review) offer this and cost less.
With the X80 series, Vivo also claims it will release three generations of Android OS updates and three years of security updates, which is a big deal. The Vivo X80 runs on Funtouch OS 12, based on Android 12. The software worked well during my first use, but I noticed several pre-installed third-party apps.
The Vivo X80 is not only a camera-focused smartphone, but it also has the hardware to deliver good gaming performance. The phone’s price is quite attractive, and in terms of competition, it rivals the Realme GT 2 Pro (Review) and the Motorola Edge 30 Pro (Review). It also seems like a very good upgrade to the X70 Pro, as in addition to a more powerful SoC, it also has stereo speakers and an IP rating. I’ll be testing the X80’s cameras, battery life, and gaming performance over the next few weeks, so stay tuned for the full review coming soon to Gadgets 360 only.
Disclosure: Vivo sponsored the correspondent’s flights and hotel for the pre-launch event in Dubai.