After spending some time with the Vivo X Fold 2, I was happy to jump in and use the Vivo X Flip. This is Vivo's first foldable smartphone, following in the footsteps of the Moto Razr Plus, Galaxy Z Flip 4, and more.
Granted, this is the first flip phone I've used since the Galaxy Z Flip 3, as I'm leaning more towards flip phones. But the X Flip opened my eyes a bit to the appeal of this smallest and most compact form factor on the market.
Vivo X Flip. design and specifications
Stripping away the boring stuff first, the Vivo X Flip is essentially the flagship of 2022 in almost every way. It is powered by a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor paired with 12GB of RAM and up to 512GB of internal storage. It also has a dual camera which is the best in this segment of the market.
Vivo has also managed to fit in a 4,400mAh battery, which is one of the largest we've seen in this form factor. It comes with 44W fast charging, which is much better than the Galaxy Z Flip 4 and Moto RAZR Plus. But more on that later.
As for the displays, you're greeted by a 3-inch AMOLED shield that sits between the hinge and the camera module. Open the phone and you'll see a 6.7-inch FHD+ display with up to 120Hz variable refresh rate.
And that brings me to the first highlight of the X Flip, thanks to the teardrop heel. Basically, unless you're really looking for it, you won't be able to see the crease in the middle of the screen. You don't have to worry about the screen becoming painful if you leave it on the table or during use.
Taking a step back, I wanted to address the overall design of the X Flip. I think Vivo has succeeded because the phone is light and comfortable thanks to the rounded edges. I'm also a big fan of the side-mounted fingerprint scanner built into the power button.
The X Flip is very durable, but not too heavy for everyday use. It doesn't feel like a cheap phone in any way, which has me a little worried as I write this review.
Vivo X Flip. performance and battery life
Performance is what you'd expect from a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 smartphone. It will be pretty good and can handle pretty much anything you throw at it. It might get a bit hotter compared to other phones, but it's nothing to worry about really.
I'm also happy to see 44W fast charging built in, which is better than most top 'flat' phones, not to mention the X Flip's rotating foes. I was able to get a 50% charge in just 30 minutes, which is more than good considering you don't need the X Fold 2's 120W fast charge.
However, I was also disappointed to learn that despite the use of glass and aluminum, there is no wireless charging. It seems like it was more of an oversight than anything else, and maybe Vivo is just playing it safe with this foldable device. But it also gives the company room to improve if the X Flip 2 is on the horizon.
Vivo X Flip. software
The X Flip uses OriginOS 3, which is based on Android 13, but has many different settings so you can customize the interface to your liking. This includes making the quick settings bar easier to use if you slide it to the bottom half of the screen, eliminating the need to perform finger gymnastics to reach the top of the phone.
When the X Flip is fully unlocked, there really isn't much to write home about, as it's basically the same as any Android phone. The real fun starts when you want to try out different apps with the X Flip folded in half.
Thanks to its teardrop design, the X Flip can be positioned at various angles from 60 to 120 degrees. Ideal when you want to watch a video while holding the phone vertically, or if you want to take photos and use the built-in tripod.
Like the X Fold 2, Vivo only launched the X Flip in China, which means it doesn't come bundled with Google services. Instead, you'll need to download the Google Play Store, which takes just a few steps to download all your favorite apps and games.
As for the X Flip screen protector, I still have mixed feelings. On the one hand, the large screen is nice to look at, making it easy to reply to messages or use as a viewfinder without opening the phone.
But on the other hand, Vivo is severely limited in terms of the apps you can use. As of this writing, the only apps you can use out of the box include some of the company's own apps as well as WeChat. Of course, we'd love to see compatibility expand to more apps, even if it's just for messaging like WhatsApp or Telegram.
Plus, you can still read all your incoming notifications, and there's a customizable dashboard that lets you see things like the date, steps, and weather. And there are tons of customization options in the Settings app.
Vivo X rotating cameras
As I mentioned earlier, the X Flip "only" has a dual camera, but the results often surprised me. I don't have to worry about the delay in pressing the shutter button and taking the photo. The built-in night mode also impressed, which is especially nice to use since the X Flip can be used as a tripod.
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So, you won't be disappointed with the camera system offered by Vivo's first foldable phone. It might even be the best camera system in this form factor, even if it doesn't use the same sensors as Vivo's beautiful X90 Pro+.
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Vivo X Flip. competition
The most obvious competitor to the Vivo X Flip is Samsung's upcoming Galaxy Z Flip 5. Samsung is rumored to be expanding the screen protector to make it more useful, as well as introducing a new hinge design that will allow it to fold flat. Also, the cost will be lower because you won't have to import it from China, apart from the commissioning contracts that can be made.
Motorola's Razr Plus is also a great competitor to the X Flip, as both are powered by the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1. The Vivo has the edge in terms of storage, RAM, and battery, but again, the Razer Plus is easier to hold and has a bigger screen.
Vivo X Flip. is it worth buying?
You should buy it if:
Want the best cameras on a foldable phone?
Are you successfully importing and installing Google services?
You want good battery life in this form factor
You should not buy it if:
Want to use it with an eSIM?
You don't want to worry about importing and installing Google services
Curious about what the Galaxy Z Flip 5 has to offer?
As with the Vivo X Fold 2, it's very hard to recommend the X Flip wholeheartedly. Vivo's first foldable design is pretty good, especially when you get over the lack of Google services. The camera is excellent, the battery life is excellent, and it's comfortable to hold, if quite slippery.
Not only is the Galaxy Z Flip 5 just around the corner, but the Razr Plus is already available, and you can head to your local carrier and get it right away. If there's one thing I know for sure, it's that I'm excited to see what Vivo can do with a potential successor.
If you really want to get your hands on the Vivo X Flip, it's available on Giztop and retails for around $999 at the time of writing. But it might be better to wait a little longer to see what the Z Flip 5 has to offer.