Ah the flips and the foldables. Thanks to big brands getting on the bandwagon, these form factors have risen to popularity. What’s kept you from buying one? Mostly the price? And of course, the uncertainty of the durability ‘moving parts’ in an electronic device as important as your primary smartphone! Well, Tecno has got the price bit in check at Rs. 54,999 and when it comes to uncertainty, that’s for you to decide. Hopefully what you read next will help.
Tecno Phantom V Flip review
On the flip side…
Design and Build
The Phantom V Flip immediately wows you when you hold it in your hand. It’s like a fresh watermelon ice lolly on a hot summer’s day! The slim form factor, the vegan leather back and the drop-shaped hinge all ooze premium quality! Although looks are subjective, the front of the phone when folded houses a circular display/camera module that is integrated quite well and serves a purpose as well.
Tecno’s ‘Hoverlock’ design of the folding mechanism means it can be operated at 30-degree angles and 150-degree angles which makes it interesting to click pictures and other general use cases. The right side has an easy to reach power button which doubles up as a fingerprint sensor as well which is a nice touch. There’s visibly no gap between the two displays when the phone is folded and opening it with one hand is possible (if you have huge hands and a lot of strength) but we ended up using both our hands for safety reasons. Tecno also gives you a cover with a ring attachment but we didn’t like it that much.
All right, buckle up for the Phantom V Flip's main attraction - that 6.9-inch flex AMOLED screen. It's a beauty, boasting full-HD+ resolution and a buttery 120Hz refresh rate. And when you step outside, that High Brightness Mode cranks things up, making it shine like a beacon in broad daylight. Content across apps looks super crisp throughout and works extremely well in split screen mode as well! There’s support for HDR10, HDR10+, and HLG too.
So, can you feel and see the crease? Yes, you can. Especially when there’s darker content playing or you set a dark wallpaper and the screen reflects a light in your room, it gets pretty prominent. But give it a few days and just like your nose, your eyes will learn to ignore the crease as well.
In the outer realm of the Phantom V Flip, there's this nifty circular 1.32-inch panel that's reminiscent of a smartwatch screen. It's not as dazzling as the inner display, but don't underestimate it – this little guy packs a punch. It's your gateway to a bunch of apps you grab from the Play Store.
What's on the menu? Well, think of it as your personal glance-at-a-glance hub. You've got your events, a sneak peek at those rear cameras (positioned around this circular wonder), fitness tracking updates, upcoming alarms, weather checks, a sound recorder, timer, and stopwatch, all neatly laid out for your convenience.
Swipe down for quick toggles, swipe up for a snapshot of your notifications – all at your fingertips on this mini yet mighty round screen. It's like having a smartwatch sidekick right on the cover of your phone. There’s also this cute animated cat that comes up to greet you!
When it comes to the primary camera on the Phantom V Flip, it’s a real champ at capturing those picture-perfect moments. Dialing into the "64MP" mode is where the magic happens – think crisp, sharp images thanks to some pixel-binning wizardry. Sure, it does take a tad longer to save, but the payoff in quality is worth it. Shots in proper daylight leave little to complain about. There’s enough detail and accuracy on offer here. We switch gears to the wide-angle lens during the day and let's just say there's a noticeable dip in quality – exposure and colors take a bit of a hit but it isn’t all that bad.
Now, let’s talk about the dark side – literally. Enter the Super Night mode, and suddenly, darkness becomes your ally. The primary camera does wonders in low-light scenarios, snagging detail within seconds. It’s like having a magician in your pocket, turning night into day with a snap. Surprisingly the AI wizardry on here actually is quite nice unlike the competition! It really helps bring out the tone and detail of colours and objects. I like that Tecno has kept it simple here with two rear cameras rather than adding a bunch just to bump up the specs.
When it comes to selfies, the Phantom V Flip's inner 32-megapixel camera gets the job done nicely. But here's where things get interesting: that dual-display setup isn’t just for show. Flip the script and use the rear 64-megapixel camera to snap a shot of yourself, all while previewing the action on the cover display. It opens up the possibility to use all the features of the main camera, a bit narcissistic, but who isn’t these days? What’s missing is support for video recording at 4K 60fps. You can record only 1080p@60fps which is meh.
Software and Performance
The tecno V Flips ships with HiOS built on Android 13 and it comes with its fair share of bloatware. There’s WPS Office, Phone Master, Facebook, Mobile Cloner, Visha Player, Spotify, Carlcare, Instagram and its own ‘Sharp News’ curator. Now you can uninstall most of these except for a few bits that are specific to Tecno. Android purists may want to look away now. There’s plenty of gestures and multitasking and multi window features that Tecno has built in that make the split experience nicer and more intuitive. At no point does it feel cumbersome or intimidating to use which is a big win.
When it comes to performance, that MediaTek Dimensity 8050 with the Mali G-77 GPU kills it! The 8GB RAM can be extended to 16GB thanks to UFS 2.1 and the Flip performs like a beast! Apps open up without issues, Lightroom and even VN Editor are quick to respond and multi-window operations don’t stutter even a bit! Games like COD and Asphalt 9 don’t make it sweat either and the overall experience is top notch.
The Tecno Phantom V Flip is the most affordable flip option out there currently and we can’t seem to fault it much. It even supports 45W fast charging which juices up the battery in about an hour. If you’re willing to live with a smaller outer display, lack of 4K 60fps recording and the small amount of bloatware that comes along, the Flip is a great option to consider right now.
The most affordable flip hardly falters and should be at the top of your list this side of the budget