While on a road trip or for that matter, during any outing, what’s become inevitable for a regular person to do is clicking a selfie. It’s difficult to not fall into the cobwebs of exponentially growing social media platforms. As an attempt to stay ahead in the selfie-game, Chinese company vivoadded a new mid-range smartphone, dubbed the vivo Y66, in its Y series. The smartphone, much like most of the others in the vivo family, is selfie-centric, and aims to capture best in-classselfies. However, with the exceeding number of camera-focused smartphones making their entry into the tech world, is this 16-megapixel front camera toting mid-ranger equipped with enough to take on the competition? Let’s find out.
First thing I noticed when the device initially came to my sight was that it had nothing majorly appealing with the customary design essence to it, much like other vivo smartphones. The design inspiration list also includes the recently launched OPPO A57, with both the smartphones sharing certain resemblance. Starting with the front of the device, there are three capacitive keys present on the chin of the smartphone. On the head, you’ll find the USP of the smartphone- its front camera, alongside which there is an earpiece, an LED flash, and an assortment of regular sensors including the ambient light sensor and the proximity sensor. Sandwiched between these horizontal arrays of buttons and sensors is the 5.5-inch display. At the back lies the primary camera module, the ‘vivo-ly’ aligned antenna bands, and the company’s branding in the centre. The bottom edge of the smartphone houses a 3.5mm audio jack, a micro-USB port and a speaker grille, while the top edge remains bare. On the left rim there is a hybrid SIM card slot, while on the right hand you will spot the power on/off key and a volume rocker. The device is decent as far as the looks department is concerned. It’s comfortable to use and hold, however lacks a hint of innovation and immediately reminds of the vivo V5 Plus at first glance.
The smartphone has its primary highlight in the form of its cameras; the front camera sensor more specifically. The camera configuration includes a 13-megapixel rear shooter featuring LED flash, and with a higher megapixel count, the 16MP secondary camera, which comes with soft flash. Starting with my experience with the front camera, it is accompanied by the company’s proprietary features- Moonlight Glow, and Face Beauty, for further beautifying selfies. However, the front camera seemed to overexpose the output slightly. More often than not I enjoyed nicely detailed pictures. In my opinion, the front shooter right from capturing good quality images flooded with details, performs similarly to the one on the vivo V5 Plus. Unfortunately, you won’t find the Bokeh Effect feature for DSLR-like selfies. The front shooter performed average in low-light conditions and the output produced was a bit grainy.
In a nutshell, the vivo Y66 is ideal for all selfie lovers who fancy updating their Snapchat and Instagram Stories every minute, seizing each precious moment.
Coming to the rear camera, the device was successful in clicking good quality pictures in almost every shooting condition. The default camera app offers various shooting modes including Night mode, Ultra HD mode, PPT mode, Professional mode, Slow mode and Timelapse as well. I tested the camera both in the HDR and the normal mode. While the natural output of the primary shooter was nicely detailed, the overall tones tended more towards the warmer spectrum. The HDR mode corrected the colours while adding just the right amount of contrast and exposure to deliver a more uniform play of lights, shadows, and colours. The shutter speed of the device is average. Low-light photography results, in the case of back camera, too appeared slightly grainy.
The display of the vivo Y66 spans 5.5 inches sporting HD screen resolution, and is covered by a 2.5D curved glass. The screen emits adequate amount of brightness, and the icons and text on the display were sharp enough. I was pleased with the viewing angles as well, however, while tilting slight tones of red were visible. The screen was a bit reflective too. Just like the vivo V5 Plus, the screen brightness can be auto-adjusted, and you also get the Global Eye Protection option, which reduces the blues in the screen to avoid strain in the eyes. While watching videos, the colours appeared rich, in cumulation, the smartphone scores well in this department.
Hardware Specifications And Performance
The smartphone packs in 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage, which has the expandability option of up to 256GB via a memory card. The smartphone gets energy to carry out tasks from a MediaTek MT6750 processor clocked at 1.5GHz, along with Mali T860 GPU. The smartphone, with its decent specifications, proved to be a good daily driver during my review period, however a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 chipset might have accelerated the performance. It didn’t stutter while using multiple apps. Be it Snapchatting, or scrolling through the Facebook newsfeed, posting instant updates on Instagram, or streaming my favourite web series, the device performed decently throughout regular use. Slight heating issues emerged while multi-tasking, but that didn’t take a toll on the overall performance of the smartphone. Among other things, the audio quality was just average. Something which I badly missed in the device was the fingerprint scanner, which could have have been placed somewhere at the back, given the fact that many mid-range smartphones such as the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4, and the OPPO A57 boast of this feature.
In terms of the battery, the device gets its fuel from a 3,000mAh module which had its juice last for a about a day with mixed use. This is decent for a user who doesn’t grill the device too often. The smartphone, however, brought forth heating issues while charging. The charging time was decent; the vivo Y66 charges fully in approximately an hour.
The smartphone runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow with the company’s own operating system- FunTouch OS 2.3.8 on top of it. The user experience was smooth, and despite the UI skin on top, device was snappy to use. There was no bloatware included either.
Even though the smartphone, like any other device, has its share of pros and cons, the vivo Y66 for a price tag of Rs 15,999, comes across as a decent daily driver with its comfy and trending design, good cameras, and good overall specs. The vivo Y66 stands against the likes of the OPPO A57, 4GB RAM variant of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4, and 3GB RAM variant of the Moto G5 Plus, in the battleground. All these devices offer fingerprint scanners, thus having a slight edge over the Y66. The Moto G5 Plus and the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 get better processors, and some rather impressive primary cameras. However, the vivo Y66 is a great selfie shooter. While you might want to consider the aforementioned competitors if you’re looking for an all-rounder, for selfie freaks with a budget of around Rs 15,000, I recommend the vivo Y66.