Vivo’s sub-brand IQOO recently launched its IQOO 3 5G smartphone in India at a starting price of Rs 36,999. The device comes with a number of high-end specifications like (the latest chipset) Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor, up to 256GB of internal storage and four cameras including a 48MP primary lens. With these specifications, the smartphone seems to be great on paper. We spent a few days with it to see if it is as good as the company claims it to be and here’s our review of IQOO 3 5G:
IQOO 3 5G design and display
As always, let’s begin by talking about the design of the mobile. The smartphone has a very sturdy built and its look and feel is very pleasing. It has a premium design and comes across as way more expensive than what it actually is. The IQOO 3 5G smartphone is made up of glass and its back panel comes with a gradient design. The handset is available Tornado Black, Quantum Silver and Volcano Orange colour options and the one that we got for review was dressed in black.
Since the smartphone is made up of glass, it catches fingerprints rather easily. So, we would suggest that you always keep a micro-fibre cloth with yourself to keep your handset clean. The back panel of the device also houses its camera module and has the IQOO branding. The edges of the IQOO 3 5G house the power and the volume rocker keys on the right side, while the Google Assistant key is placed on the left. The 3.5mm headphone jack and the secondary microphone are at the top, while the bottom edge has the SIM tray, speaker grille, the Type-C port and the microphone.
Flip over and you’ll see the 6.44-inch Full HD+ E3 Super AMOLED display that has an aspect ratio of 20:9 and comes with 2.5D curved glass. The screen of the smartphone also has support for HDR10+ video playback and comes with a peak brightness of 1,200 nits.
Bezels that outline the display of the device are thicker than the ones we have seen on other devices that we have reviewed recently. But then, there’s enough real estate and you can’t really term them as ‘thick’. The smartphone also has a punch-hole selfie camera on the top right of its display. A very key feature of the screen of the smartphone is that it has a touch response rate of 180Hz. We should mention that this is an added advantage for gamers as most phones have a touch response rate of 60Hz.
The colours that are projected on the display of IQOO 3 5G are vibrant and accurate. The images are sharp and clear and watching videos, and playing games was a treat. In fact, we spent hours watching Netflix on this smartphone. The sunlight readability of the device was good too.
In a nutshell, we would say that the design and the display of IQOO 3 5G can both be counted amongst its pros.
IQOO 3 5G performance and cameras
Before we begin talking about the performance of IQOO 3 5G, let’s shed some light on the specifications of the device. The device is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 865 SoC clubbed with up to 12GB of RAM and has up to 256GB of onboard storage. We should point out that these storage configurations can be found in the 5G variant of the smartphone only. The device comes with Adreno 650 GPU and has UFS 3.1 storage memory. It runs on Android 10 and houses a 4,450mAh battery. The mobile device has a quad-camera setup on its back panel that has a 48MP primary sensor, a 13MP telephoto sensor, a 13MP wide-angle lens and a 2MP portrait camera. For selfies and video calls, there is a 16MP camera on the front panel of the device.
Since the smartphone is aimed at gamers, it comes with Game Space that gives the user information like GPU clock speed and temperature of the device. It also has a dedicated Ultra Gaming Mode, and has Carbon Fiber VC Liquid Cooling to keep the temperature of the smartphone in check.
And since we are talking about the software features of the smartphone, we should also mention its downside, which is bloatware. There are a number of apps pre-installed on the device including Amazon, Flipkart, Facebook, WPS Office, Daily Hunt and more. Luckily most can be uninstalled.
The performance of IQOO 3 5G was simply superb. The smartphone was extremely fast in performing most tasks and our experience with it was extremely smooth. We multi-tasked a lot on the device and did not experience lag even once. But then, with specifications like that of IQOO 3 5G, lag was not even expected.
Gaming on the handset was a great experience in itself. We played a number of games on the smartphone and they all ran extremely smoothly. Even the graphic hungry games like PUBG Mobile and Asphalt 9: Legends ran very smoothly. As we mentioned earlier, IQOO 3 5G comes with a number of features that are dedicated for gaming. These obviously enhance the gaming experience on the smartphone. If we talk about Game Space, it gives users all the vital information that is required for gaming. Ultra Gaming Mode, on the other hand, has options like turning off notifications, and disabling automatic Wi-Fi connection. Using it will ensure uninterrupted gaming for users.
Coming to the 4,450mAh battery of the device, it did a decent job during our time with the device. With moderate usage, it lasted us an entire day. If your usage is heavy, expect a few hours lesser than that. Another thing worth mentioning is that the smartphone takes around 45 minutes to charge completely, which we think is excellent.
The fingerprint scanner as well as the face unlock feature of the smartphone did a good job at all times. There wasn’t a single time that we faced a problem in unlocking the device.
Now, let’s talk about the cameras of IQOO 3 5G. If we look at the performance of the 48MP primary camera, it worked very well in areas that had ample light.
The colours were accurate and the images were extremely clear and sharp. In dimly lit conditions the quality of the images fell down. Unless we had the flash on, the pictures taken didn’t turn out to be very good, even with the Night Mode on.
The 13MP ultra-wide angle does include a lot more surface area and it managed to do a good job only in well-lit conditions. The zoomed in shots we took also at times lacked clarity. The portrait shots were mostly good.
Coming to the 16MP selfie camera of the device, we are far more impressed with that. The selfies that we took using the device were always of good quality.
There are a number of good things about the IQOO 3 5G that make it a worthy buy. It has a sturdy built and a beautiful design, comes with a vibrant display and its performance is extremely smooth. The gaming performance was simply excellent and the biometric locks were good too. However, the cameras of the smartphone could be more consistent and the battery life could be better, as we have seen in most phone from Vivo in the past. But then, we won’t count the battery as a downside as the device can charge from 0 to 100% in 45 minutes. So, most aspects of IQOO 3 5G smartphone are good and hence, we consider it to be a good buy.
- Beautiful design
- Vibrant display
- Excellent gaming
- Cameras could be better
- Battery could last longer
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