It seems like this is the year of the Chinese smartphone. In May, it was OnePlus that captured the market with its new flagship, OnePlus 6. And now, another big Chinese phone brand, Vivo, has unveiled one of the year’s most unique handsets, the Vivo NEX, which is fast becoming the talk of the town. The highlight of Vivo NEX is that it’s the world’s first smartphone with a pop-up front camera.

“Vivo NEX enjoyed huge buzz from international media during its launch and we are excited to bring this ground-breaking flagship to more markets. After many long months developing a host of new breakthrough technologies to realise this vision of the future smartphone, we are delighted to bring it to our international users,” said Alex Feng, Senior Vice President of Vivo.

He added: “Since our first entry into international markets in 2014, we have dedicated ourselves to providing consumers with innovative and stylish products that meet their lifestyle needs.With NEX, we are confident that we can inspire and empower more consumers globally, to reimagine the future mobile experience.”

Since the launch of the iPhone X last year, the notch at the top of the display has become a debatable feature in handsets. Unlike OnePlus and numerous other popular brands, Vivo decided to make its flagship phone

Vivo NEX is also an “Ultra FullView Display” smartphone. It sports a 6.59-inch bezel-less display with 91.24% screen-to-body ratio. Thanks to its pop-up front camera, that elevates from and hides behind the display, users can engage with an edge-to-edge and unobstructed interface.

This screen is no ordinary one, as it is designed with what Vivo calls “screen soundcasting technology”.  It enables the screen to act like a speaker system with no visible holes. The sound vibrations are sent through the display which simultaneously functions as a speaker. There are sensors hidden behind the screen that catch the vibrations convert them into audible frequencies. This is why NEX’s creators could scrap the top bezel without compromising with the
sound quality.

According to Vivo’s official website, “ The circuit board is over 50% smaller than the Vivo Xplay 6 and the audio performance has never been so outstanding, with a dynamic range reaching up to 130dB and distortion minimised to 115dB.”

The phone’s major highlight is its front camera. Vivo has taken the selfie camera to a whole new level, with a front camera that pops up at the touch of a button. It is placed at the top left side of the device and is powered by a highly sophisticated microstepping motor. The camera specs include a new generation Sony IMX363 lens (with sapphire crystal surface), 12MP Dual-Pixel focusing, 1.4µm super large pixel sensors, f/1.8 large aperture, 4-axis optical image stabilisation (OIS) and Adreno 630 GPU. In addition to the pop-up front camera, the NEX comes with a 5MP rear camera.

The device sports an in-display fingerprint scanner, to effortlessly lock or unlock the smartphone.

Vivo has also paid special attention to Artificial Intelligence with the NEX. The phone comes with an “AI Button”, dedicated to AI services, like the Google Assistant and Google Lens.

Vivo NEX contains 8GB RAM and 128GB internal memory. It is supported by Android v8.1 Oreo based on Funtouch OS 4.0 operating system. Though the battery is average—4000mAh—it is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 octacore processor, which will provide users with a seamless high-speed experience.

With the NEX, Vivo has tried its best to bring all the innovative features in smartphone technology centre stage. There is no doubt that with its pop-up camera and screen soundcasting system, the NEX gives us a glimpse into the future of

Vivo NEX is priced at

Rs 44,990 in India