The vivo V21 trio may have the best selfie camera we’ve seen in recent years, perhaps apart from phones that can use the main cam for the job (those pricey foldables and phones with a second screen on the back). But this is a mid-ranger – actually, three mid-rangers. Meet the vivo V21, V21 5G and V21e. The first two are essentially identical besides the network connectivity, the e model switches over to a Snapdragon chipset and has some additional differences.
The V21 and V21 5G share a 44MP front-facing camera. It has OIS, which we haven’t seen for years on this side. And it also features EIS for extra smoothness in handheld videos, which can be recorded in 4K resolution.
The vivo V21 and V21 5G have dual LED flash on the front to help out the OIS-enabled selfie camera
The front camera lives inside a notch, no fancy pop-up mechanisms here. And it has two LEDs embedded in the top frame to help out after dark, plus an AI Night Portrait mode. This camera also features autofocus – something not all flagships have.
The vivo V21e also has a 44MP selfie camera with autofocus, however the OIS system is gone (there is electronic stabilization, however). The dual LED flash is also missing in action, at least the Night Portrait and Super Night Selfie modes remain.
The three models feature the exact same triple camera setup on their backs. It starts with 64MP main camera, which has OIS. The front and the rear cameras can be used for split-screen vlogs. The main camera is joined by an 8 MP ultra wide-angle camera and a 2 MP macro module.
The three V21 models аре impressively thin, one of them is vivo’s thinnest 5G phone yet. Note that the different colorways have different finishes on the back and slightly different thicknesses and weights. Either way, you’re looking at 7.29mm or 7.38mm. There’s a camera bump on the back of course, but the impressive part is that this frame fits a front camera with OIS (and, thankfully, there’s no such thing as a selfie camera bump).
Going back to the front, there is a 6.44″ AMOLED display with 90Hz refresh rate. The panel has 1080p+ resolution (20:9) and is built using the older E3 emissive material from Samsung. The V21 and V21 5G support HDR10+, the V21e model takes a step back to HDR10. The e model has a dimmer display too, with 430 nits typical brightness, compared to 500 nits for the other two. All three have a fingerprint reader built into the display.
Both the vivo V21 and V21 5G are powered by the same chipset, the Dimensity 800U, a 7nm chip with two Cortex-A76 cores (2.4GHz) plus six A55 cores (2.0GHz) and a Mali-G57 MC3 GPU. On the 5G model, it will deliver (theoretical) peak download speeds of up to 2.3 Gbps, the 4G model will, of course, be slower.
The vivo V21e switches things around and comes equipped with a Snapdragon 720G chipset – an 8 nm chip with two Cortex-A76 derived cores (2.3GHz) and six A55 derived cores (1.8GHz), plus an Adreno 618 GPU and a X15 LTE modem (Cat 15, downlink speeds up to 800Mbps). Either way, you get 8GB of RAM and 128GB storage. vivo’s Extended RAM feature promises to make the system feel like it has 3 extra gigs of RAM.
All three phones have 4,000 mAh batteries can be topped up quickly with support for 33W FlashCharge.
The vivo V21 and V21 5G will be available soon in three colors: Sunset Dazzle, Dusk Blue and Arctic White. The vivo V21e comes with Diamond Flare and Roman Black.