Vivo V5 Lite Review
Vivo introduced a new smartphone in January and the latest addition to the company’s V5 lineup — the Vivo V5 Lite. As the name suggests, it’s the toned-down version of the Vivo V5 we reviewed back in December. It has a 5.5-inch display, 3GB RAM, 32GB storage, a 16MP front camera with LED flash, and a sub-Php10K price tag.
Design and Construction
The V5 Lite, right off the bat, looks and feels similar to the V5. Up front, it has the same 5.5-inch display with HD resolution and mounted with 2.5D curved glass. There’s no mention if it’s Gorilla Glass, so we’re assuming it’s a standard scratch-resistant panel.
Situated above the display are the receiver, sensor, 16MP selfie camera, and LED flash. Down below are three unlit capacitive keys for navigation. Missing here is the fingerprint scanner found in the V5 and V5 Plus to be able to cut the costs.
On the right are the volume keys and power/lock button. To the left is the hybrid SIM tray that can accept two micro-sized SIM cards or a single SIM and a microSD card.
The top side is devoid of any ports or buttons, while down below is the headset jack, microphone, microUSB port, and loudspeaker.
At the back is the 13MP camera, LED flash, Vivo badge, and two antenna bands at the top and bottom.
Although it still has that same look, the V5 Lite has a premium feel thanks to its metallic body. There’s a plastic chrome strip lining the sidewalls for added grip and attractiveness. It’s also relatively thin at 7.6mm with enough heft at 155 g.
The bundle includes the charging cable and adaptor, a pair of earphones, and a plastic case to protect the body against scratches and drops.
Display and Multimedia
Being a Lite variant, the handset only carries an HD panel that maxes out at 720p. It is fitted with the 5.5-inch display which brings down the pixel density to 267ppi. It’s definitely not the sharpest screen out there but the image quality it produces is satisfactory if you’re to use it for casual watching and the likes. However, the company used an IPS panel so viewing angles are quite accommodating.
The singular grille for audio only pushes out enough volume to satisfy the user in a quiet environment. When outdoor, however, the audio is easily drowned by the surrounding noise and watching or listening to music without headphones on will be a challenge.
OS, UI, and Apps
The V5 Lite is running on the same Android Marshmallow just like its bigger siblings — the V5 and V5 Plus. However, the V5 Lite comes with the later version of FunTouch OS 3.0 unlike the 2.6 version seen on the V5 straight out of the box. That said, the seemingly iOS-inspired layout is also present here with no app drawer, familiar icons, and a swipe up menu from the button for quick access to settings.
Storage-wise, it backed up by 32GB worth of memory which can be expanded via a microSD card placed on its hybrid SIM tray. The operating system takes about 10GB which leaves around 22GB for your multimedia files and apps. The company also kept bloatware to a minimum and only included Google’s apps, WPS Office, and UC Browser when you initially boot the device.
Vivo’s Smart Split 2.0 seen both in higher- and lower-end phones of the company also made its way here. It’s a feature that lets you view messages from supported apps while watching a video, for example.
The handset still carries the 13MP rear camera like the one in Vivo V5 but this Lite variant ditches the Phase Detection Autofocus and only retains the LED flash. The front camera has seen a tone down as well. It now only packs a single 16-megapixel sensor unlike the 20MP shooter of the V5 and the dual camera setup of the V5 Plus.
Although it doesn’t pack heavy selfie specs like its siblings, the V5 Lite still has a number of beautification features to help produce a more pleasant version of you when you take a self-portrait. These include buffing your skin to remove blemishes, adjusting the skin tone to make it rosy, and whitening if you want your skin to be a few shades lighter.
To top it off, users also get a Selfie Softlight which is basically a front-facing flash to aid in dimly-lit areas.
Images produced by the rear camera are decent and would definitely suffice for casual uploads on social media sites. There is some noticeable noise when shooting at night but nothing to be concerned about. Colors are vibrant enough and are natural. As for the selfie camera, the beautification features do help in blurring the blemishes of the skin but be careful of going overboard as it can remove some of the details on your face as seen on one of the photo samples below:
Performance and Benchmarks
Inside, the V5 Lite packs a 64-bit MediaTek MT6750 octa-core CPU clocked at 1.5GHz which is the same chipset used in the V5 along with the Mali-T860 GPU. The RAM has been reduced to 3GB from 4GB. Nevertheless, it was still able to perform well during our time. There were occasional hiccups when we played Asphalt 8 and Mobile Legends on it but nothing too serious.
One thing that you might find missing on the V5 Lite is the fingerprint scanner so you’re limited to typing in your code or drawing a pattern if you want extra security in accessing your device.
As for comparing the handset against other devices, here are some benchmark numbers:
- AnTuTu: 41,662
- Vellamo: 2,324 (Multicore), 1,006 (Metal), 2,145 (Chrome Browser)
- 3DMark (SlingShot Extreme): 313
- PCMark (Work v1.0): 3,873
Connectivity and Call Quality
Connectivity is accomplished using standard features like Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and GPS with A-GPS and GLONASS. Using a USB-OTG is also possible for opening files on a USB straight from the handset.
It can also accommodate two SIM cards but its hybrid setup will make you choose whether to expand your storage or have two SIMs working at the same time. We didn’t experience having problems when we used it to call although we thought the speaker could use a bit more volume to better hear the person on the other line.
Battery capacity is the same as the V5 at 3000mAh. Naturally, we expect them to last around the same time since they both have the same display size, display resolution, and chipset used.
Surprisingly, after running PCMark’s battery test, the V5 Lite lasted a bit longer than the V5 at 9 hours and 40 minutes compared to 8 hours and 27 minutes. This is also the case when we conducted a video loop test on Airplane Mode with 50% volume and brightness. The V5 Lite yielded 13 hours and 1 minute of continuous playback while the V5 only reached 11 hours and 52 minutes.
The Vivo V5 Lite is a capable handset for everyday use. At Php9,990, it offers its users better specs in general than, say, the OPPO A39 which has been discounted to the same price as the V5 Lite. It also stands up to being a selfie smartphone with its 16MP front camera and its accompanying beautification features.
We also want to acknowledge the fact that even though it almost has the same specs as the V5, the V5 Lite’s battery optimization was effective enough to make it last longer by more than an hour.
Vivo’s V5 Lite is one of the smartphones that we can recommend for selfie-centric users looking for a reliable phone for under Php10K. It may sport the usual, uninspired design with curved corners and an iOS-like theme, but for me, function always prevails over looks.
Vivo V5 Lite specs:
5.5-inch HD IPS display @ 1280 x 720 resolution, 267ppi
1.5GHz MediaTek MT6750 octa-core CPU
microSD card support (uses SIM 2)
13MP rear camera w/ LED flash
16MP front camera w/ Selfie Softlight
GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS
FunTouch OS 3.0 (Android 6.0 Marshmallow)
3,000mAh non-removable battery
153.8 x 75.5 x 7.6 mm
Crown Gold, Rose Gold
- Decent specs
- Capable selfie camera
- Selfie Softlight
- Longer battery life than the V5
- Same common design
- Lack of fingerprint scanner