Vivo has taken quite an aggressive stance of late. The company which was known to focus on selfie phones that primarily catered to offline markets is now pushing competent and reasonably priced options that can very well take on reigning ‘online exclusives’. (Vivo V9 Pro Review हिंदी में पढ़िए)

The recently launched Vivo V9 Pro, which is an upgrade to the V9 (review), is one of the most affordable Snapdragon 660 phones around. But is it better than online alternatives like Mi A2 (review) and Realme 2 Pro (review)? We will answer that and more in our Vivo V9 Review that follows.

Vivo V9 Pro Specifications

Model Vivo V9 Pro
Display 6.3 inches, 1080 x 2280 pixels, 19:9 ratio, Gorilla Glass 3

90% screen to body ratio

Processor 2.0GHz Qualcomm octa-core Snapdragon 660
RAM 6GB
Internal Storage 64GB, expandable to 256GB (Dedicated card slot)
Software Android 8.1 Oreo
Primary Camera 13MP (f/2.2) sensor, 2MP depth sensor
Secondary Camera 16MP (f/2.0), Portrait selfies, AI Beautification
Dimensions and Weight 154.8 x 75 x 7.9 mm; Weight: 150
Battery 3260mAh
Others Dual-SIM, 4G VoLTE, dual-band WiFi 802.11 ac, Bluetooth 5, GPS/GLONASS, 3.5 mm jack
SAR Value:  1.138 (Head); 0.718 (body)
Price in India Rs. 17,990

Vivo V9 Pro box content

The Vivo V9 bro box content includes:

  • The handset
  • Transparent back cover
  • Standard headphones
  • Sim ejector pin
  • Documentation

Vivo V9 Pro Review: Design and Build

The Vivo V9  (which looks the same as the V9 Pro), was the first notch-display Android phones and looked stunning. Six months later, the notch and bezel-less are terms that are casually thrown around, and then there is the one-upmanship of waterdrop notch to be considered – but we’d say that the design still remains a key strong point of the V9 Pro.

The Vivo V9  (which looks the same as the V9 pro), was the first notch-display Android phones and looked stunning. Six months later, the notch and bezel-less are terms that are casually thrown around, and then there is the one-upmanship of waterdrop notch to be considered – but we’d say that the design still remains a key strong point of the V9 Pro.

The gold accent around the camera and fingerprint sensor is louder than what we had on the Vivo V9.  Vivo is still sticking to the regular Type-A port for charging and data transfer. As always, a good quality TPU case is bundled in the box and a decent pre-installed plastic-film screen protects its almost bezel-less fascia against scratches.

Also Read: Vivo V11 Pro Review – Better than Poco F1?

Vivo V9 Pro Review: Display

The Vivo V9 Pro has a 6.3-inch Full HD+ IPS LCD display. The screen is sharp, has decent contrast for an LCD panel, and has punchy colors. Outdoor visibility isn’t a problem either.

On the downside, the white point leans towards colder tones causing a bluish cast. This isn’t something that regular consumers are bound to notice, but it still takes away from the experience.

Vivo doesn’t offer an option to adjust color temperature in default mode, but you can opt for relatively warmer tones from a slider present under eye protection mode in display settings.

The notch doesn’t leave much room on the status bar for app notifications so you will have to drag down the notification panel to check them. You can decide if you want a particular app to run in full screen with a notch cutout or below the notch strip (or status bar). Zoom and fill-in option works for YouTube.

Vivo V9 Pro Review: Performance and Software

From the performance perspective, the Snapdragon 660 paired with 6GB RAM and 64GB storage is perfectly apt at this price point. The phone has a dedicated card slot that you can use to add up to 256GB of secondary storage. Day-to-day usage experience is smooth and all high-end games we tried ran remarkably well.

The fingerprint sensor and face unlock work extremely fast. You can just double tap your phone to unlock using face recognition, and going by our experience, would rarely notice the lock screen doing so.

We didn’t face any connectivity issue on the phone. Call quality is excellent, and the phone also supports dual SIM Dual VoLTE.

The Funtouch OS software on the Vivo V9 isn’t our favorite custom skin but it’s fully loaded with features and customization options and is quite stable. Aesthetically, the interface is better than say, Oppo’s Color OS, but it’s still a wannabe iOS look-alike.

We couldn’t resist changing the launcher and the keyboard for long.  There are several third-party apps pre-installed on the phone but the good thing is that you can uninstall all of them. Like all other Vivo phones and majority of affordable phones in India, the V9 Pro doesn’t support HD streaming on Netflix and Amazon Prime.

Also read: Apple iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max Review 

Vivo V9 Pro Camera Review

In comparison to Vivo V9, the Pro variant downgrades the camera hardware. On the rear, you get a 13MP (f/2.2) primary camera combined with a 2MP (f/2.4) depth sensor. For selfies, there is a 16MP (f/2.0) sensor on the front.

Outdoors, the camera can lock focus easily and capture a good amount of details. Metering and dynamic range are reasonable too. In low light, however, image quality depletes rather steeply.

In proper lighting, the camera performance can match up to the like of Realme 2 Pro, but lowlight performance puts the  V9 Pro at a disadvantage.

HDR Mode works well and manages to enhance dynamic range without going overboard.

 

The portrait mode is a hit and miss case and which is why we didn’t use it very often.

The selfie camera is impressive, though. The selfies are certainly better than what you’d get from the competition at this price point.

Note: All the Vivo V9 Pro camera samples have been resized for web. You can check these and more camera samples full-size in this Flickr album.

Vivo V9 Pro Review: Battery and Audio

The Vivo V9 Pro comes with a 3260mAh battery and we didn’t face any trouble reaching the one day mark. Despite a different chipset being used, the battery backup is almost similar to Vivo V9. Fast charging isn’t supported but the bundled 10W charger (5V, 2A) can still top up the tank quickly.

The mono speaker at the bottom is loud enough, but the quality of audio output is strictly average. The V9 Pro doesn’t have Hi-Fi audio. The quality of audio via headphones doesn’t stand out either.

Vivo V9 Pro Review verdict – should you buy it?

The V9 Pro is a great looking phone and Vivo is certainly pushing itself to add more value. The Snapdragon 660 mobile platform paired with ample RAM and storage should ensure that the performance remains durable in the long run. The selfie camera is quite good,  the battery backup is adequate, and, this time, the pricing is also very reasonable. On the downside, the rear camera performance left us wanting for more.

It can’t be denied that the competition is relentless. Phones like Realme 2 Pro and Mi A2 offer better or equally competent hardware for nearly the same (or lesser) price. At the same time, none of these offerings, including the V9 Pro, is perfect and the overall experience of the Vivo V9 Pro tells us that it’s surely a viable option if you are looking for a phone under Rs. 20,000; more so for offline buyers.

Pros 

  • Looks good, comfortable to handle
  • Powerful Chipset
  • Dual SIM Dual VoLTE
  • Dedicated card slot
  • Selfie camera

Cons

  • No HD streaming on Netflix
  • Still no Type-C port
  • No fast charging

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