Back in September 2019, Vivo had introduced the Vivo NEX 3 smartphone with a SUPER AMOLED waterfall display. It had also unveiled as the company’s first 5G smartphone. Today, the company has launched the Vivo NEX 3S 5G smartphone as its enhanced version. The new flagship smartphone is powered by the Snapdragon 865 mobile platform; it supports dual-mode 5G, which wasn’t available on last year’s model. The phone debuts with some other attractive features like UFS 3.1 storage and LPDDR5 RAM. It comes in two flavors such as 8 GB RAM + 256 GB storage and 12 GB RAM + 256 GB storage. It is priced at 4,998 Yuan ($619) and 5,298 Yuan ($763). It can be availed in three colors like black, blue, and red. The first sale of the phone will be held on March 14 in China. Besides, alongside the new smartphone, the company also announced a new minimalistic browser called the NEX browser. The new NEX browser is based on the chromium kernel and claims to provide a smoother and clutter-free experience to users. It has a fairly simple UI that provides a clean visual experience. Vivo’s NEX browser can be used via text search and voice searches as well. But one of its most useful features is the built-in adblocker.
Vivo NEX 3S 5G Design and display
The Vivo NEX series has always stood for high-end and unconventional designs, and the NEX 3S 5G is no different. The Vivo NEX 3S 5G seems to borrow many of its features such as waterfall display, front and rear cameras from the original NEX 3 5G smartphone. The Vivo NEX 3S 5G that has a glass and metal combination chassis sports 167.44 x 76.14 x 9.4mm dimensions, and it weighs 219.5 grams. There are no physical power and volume buttons on the edges of the phone. Like the predecessor NEX 3 5G, the NEX 3S 5G arrives with TouchSense pressure-sensitive buttons for controlling volume and power. The rear panel of the phone houses a circular-shaped triple camera setup. The device's top and bottom bezels are proportional, and the phone also included a pop-up selfie camera. There is an under-display fingerprint sensor. The other some features that are available on the NEX 3S 5G include dual SIM support, Bluetooth 5.0, GPS, and USB-C. It lacks a 3.5mm audio jack, so you will purchase Bluetooth earphones for enjoying music.
As for the display of the phone, it flaunts a large Super AMOLED display of 6.89 inches. The Waterfall FullView display magnificently curves at nearly 90 degrees at its left and right edges. The notch-less screen provides a Full HD+ resolution of 1080 x 2256 pixels and a screen-to-body ratio of 99.6 percent. It is an HDR10+ compliant screen that supports 100 percent P3 wide color gamut and sRGB. Along with with 18.8:9 aspect ratio, Vivo NEX 3S 5G’s display can reach up to 800 nits maximum brightness. It also enables scrolling the display contents from the sides, leaving the large canvas for viewing. There are also a bunch of lightning effects which kick in when notifications or calls come. It can also be configured to shine as a cool equalizer while playing music. The phone helps bring a better viewing, and handling experience gives a nice premium touch and allows a bigger display in a smaller footprint. These curves also helped with typing, as our thumbs had to travel a shorter distance spread across a bigger canvas, significantly improving speed and accuracy.
Vivo NEX 3S 5G front and rear cameras
The Vivo NEX 3S 5G comes with a motorized pop-up selfie camera mechanism that houses a 16-megapixel lens with f/2.1 aperture. This module also includes a front-facing flash for pictures and video calls in low-light conditions. The Hyper HDR feature onboard enables the phone to increase the accuracy of dynamic range between the face of the user and the brightest spot in the background. The selfie shooter of the phone has 1.0µm pixels, and it can record only Full HD videos at 30fps.
Let’s talk about the rear camera setup of the NEX 3S 5G. The back panel of the device features a round-shaped camera module. It includes a 64-megapixel primary shooter with f/1.8 aperture, a 13-megapixel super-wide lens with f/2.2 aperture, and a 13-megapixel telephoto lens with f/2.48 aperture. The triple cameras support 2x optical zoom and 20x digital zoom. HDR, Hyper-HDR and super EIS video stabilization, 4K video shooting, and 480fps 1080p slow-motion video recording are some of the camera features of the NEX 3S 5G. The 64MP primary camera uses Samsung’s new ISOCELL Bright GW1 image sensor, which has a big 1/1.72-inch sensor and a 0.8µm pixel size. By default, it uses pixel binning to combine four adjacent pixels to form a “superpixel” resulting in 16MP images with a 1.6µm pixel size for better performance in varying lighting conditions. The primary camera has excellent dynamic range and colors are also very accurate and pleasing to look. Focus speeds are also adequate. Switching to the ultra-wide sensor, the color, and dynamic range parity very well maintained. The telephoto lens added a fresh perspective, Night Mode is present too, which would require you to hold the phone for 2 seconds where it takes multiple images and superimposes them to reveal details in the darker parts of the picture.
Processor, software, and battery
The Vivo NEX 3S 5G is the first Vivo branded flagship smartphone of the year powered by the Snapdragon 865 mobile platform. The Snapdragon 865 Chipset is constructed on a 7nm+ Octa-core processor (1x2.84 GHz Kryo 585 & 3x2.42 GHz Kryo 585 & 4x1.8 GHz Kryo 585), and there is an Adreno 650 GPU. The SoC is coupled with up to 12 GB of LPDDR5 RAM. The phone comes in UFS 3.1 storage choices of 128 GB and 256 GB. Unfortunately, there is no support for external storage on the smartphone. The UFS 3.1 storage has made the phone perceivably faster at opening apps and transfers files. Vivo has also fitted this phone with a vapor chamber of sorts, which helps keep the thermals in check and sustain peak performance for longer. The phone supports the latest Wi-Fi 6 and is capable of connecting two Wi-Fi networks simultaneously. The phone comes with FunTouch OS 10 based Android 10 operating system. There is a VPG process daemon technology that can intelligently diagnose abnormalities of third-party apps. The presence of SDM 865 promises impressive gaming experience on the Vivo NEX 3S 5G handset. There is X-Axis Haptic onboard for vibration while playing games and typing.
The smartphone is coupled with a zero-inductive soaking plate that can effectively reduce the surface temperature phone by 3 to 4 degrees. It can also reduce the temperature of the main chip by more than 10 degrees. On the inside, the Vivo NEX 3S 5G packs a 4,350mAh battery, which is slightly smaller than the 4,500mAh capacity battery of the predecessor Vivo NEX 3. Sadly, there is no support for wireless charging on the phone. While the 3C listing of the phone was revealed that the phone would be arriving with a 55W charger, the final product has a 44W rapid charger.