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Vivo X Fold 3 Pro First Impressions: The Perfect Foldable?

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Vivo has indeed come a long way in the Indian market. What started off with the Vivo X1 in 2012 has now finally moved past the premium segment into the ultra-premium segment with the launch of its first foldable device, the X Fold 3 Pro. The latter, being the company’s latest offering, packs in pretty much what one would expect from a foldable that’s meant to compete with the OnePlus Open and the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 (and soon Galaxy Z Fold 6). Just like its BBK sibling, OnePlus, Vivo has skipped launching a smaller clamshell foldable and directly gone with a book-style foldable instead. Has Vivo done anything differently? Let’s find out.

The Vivo X Fold 3 Pro is priced at Rs. 1,59,999 in India, which makes it the brand’s most premium offering ever after its Vivo X100 Pro (a regular bar-shaped smartphone), which was launched earlier this year. With a price tag this high, buyers will certainly expect nothing but the best.

The Vivo X Fold 3 Pro has a two-stage alert slider that can switch between the device’s two (silent/ringing) sound profiles

 

The phone appears not too thick when folded but super slim when open. This is mainly down to the new hinge which supports the display with a minimal crease and lets both halves lay flat against each other. The phone measures just 5.2mm when unfolded, which is basically as thin as its USB-C port at the bottom. When folded, this doubles up to 11.2mm, which, despite appearing a bit chunky, does not feel too uncomfortable to hold. This is mainly down to its weight, which feels almost like a regular premium flagship at 236 grams. For reference, Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 5 weighs 253 grams (which is a bit over a quarter of a kilo), while Apple’s iPhone 15 Pro Max (a regular bar-shaped smartphone) weighs 221 grams.

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The Vivo X Fold 3 Pro has three rear-facing cameras, out of which two feature optical image stabilisation or OIS

 

While not as unique as the camera-focussed OnePlus Open (with its faux leather rear panel), it’s still not as basic as Samsung’s Galaxy Fold 5. You have a curved edge cover display which bends very little over the right edge of the phone, and the same goes for the rear panel (which is made of a plastic fibre) and bends over its left edge. When opened, the larger-than-usual foldable, with its massive 8.03-inch folding AMOLED panel, despite its size, feels comfortable to hold. Like many other features of this foldable, it too get’s the “biggest on the block” bragging rights. The inner display has a 4:3.55 aspect ratio, which makes it better than the OnePlus Open’s nearly square form factor, which, as pointed out in my [review], was not good for media consumption.

The Vivo X Fold 3 Pro’s front and rear panels have curved edges on their right and left sides

 

The slightly rectangular inner folding display does make the 6.53-inch AMOLED cover display a bit narrower (21.1:9 aspect ratio) than the OnePlus’, but it’s not as narrow as the Galaxy Z Fold 5’s remote-control-like (23.1:9) panel which felt a bit squished while typing. The foldable also has two fingerprint readers for convenience. There’s one embedded into the cover display, while the second sensor is available upon unfolding the main display in the bottom area of the right half of the panel.

The phone’s design also focuses on durability. Vivo offers an IPX8 water resistance rating, which is the same as that of Samsung’s phone.

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For its core hardware, Vivo has the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 SoC. There’s 16GB of RAM and 512GB of storage. The phone also has space for two nano SIM cards. There’s a massive 5,700mAh battery which is the biggest we have seen on any foldable to date in India. And it charges up using a 120W charger at 100W. Vivo’s also thrown in the kitchen sink and offers 50W wireless charging as well, which happens via its special charging dock (sold separately).

The Vivo X Fold 3 Pro’s cover display has a very thin bezel

 

Vivo was never shy about camera performance with its premium devices, with every new generation attempting to outdo the other in our reviews of its X series smartphones. Its first foldable in India also gets the Zeiss branding along with its T-star coated lenses. There’s a 50-megapixel primary camera with OIS accompanied by a 50-megapixel ultrawide camera and a 3X 64-megapixel telephoto camera (OIS) as well. Selfies are handled by two 32-megapixel fixed focus cameras, one located in the cover display and the second in the main display. As with every Zeiss-branded device from Vivo, this one also comes with numerous Zeiss lenses and styles in the various camera modes.

Vivo has done things a bit differently from OnePlus when it comes to software. Apart from offering the latest Android 14-based Funtouch OS 14 out of the box, there are also several new generative AI integrations in the notes and recording apps, along with language translation. Vivo has also used AI for the phone’s folding abilities to make them smarter.

The Vivo X Fold 3 Pro’s main folding display is the largest one we have seen on a foldable to date at 8.03 inches

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Indeed, Vivo has a solid contender for Samsung in the foldables space this year, packing in a few segment-leading hardware features. While Samsung has already taken a hit on a global level thanks to Huawei’s reemergence, there’s a lot banking on this year’s new foldables from Samsung, which is also expected to arrive in a new ‘Ultra‘ flavour as well. For now, Vivo clearly seems to have enough when it comes to bragging rights, given its hardware specifications. But we will have to put the phone through its paces to see how it all comes together when used as a daily driver and is subjected to the wear and tear of daily usage. So, stay tuned to our detailed review of the Vivo X Fold 3 Pro, which will be out soon.

Is the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 the best foldable phone you can buy in India right now? We discuss the company’s new clamshell-style foldable handset on the latest episode of Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.

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