iQOO 3 launches in India with Snapdragon 865 in both 4G and 5G variants
If you aren’t familiar with iQOO, we wouldn’t blame you. About a year ago, Vivo started selling premium gaming smartphones in China under the iQOO sub-brand. iQOO-branded smartphones spent most of 2019 staying within the Chinese market, but Vivo decided to expand the iQOO brand into India, where it will operate as a separate brand while sharing Vivo’s manufacturing facilities. The decision to operate iQOO as a separate entity in India can be seen as an attempt by Vivo to sell premium smartphones without changing the perception of the Vivo brand. Thus, iQOO has arrived in India with its first smartphone, the iQOO 3, and there’s plenty to talk about this 5G gaming smartphone.
iQOO 3 5G: Specifications
|Specification||iQOO 3 5G/4G|
|Dimensions and Weight|
|SoC||Qualcomm Snapdragon 865:|
|RAM and Storage|
|Battery & Charging|
|Android Version||iQOO UI 1.0 based on Android 10|
As the specifications would imply, the iQOO 3 attempts to be a gaming phone. iQOO also wanted it to be India’s first 5G smartphone, but Realme beat them to that with the Realme X50 Pro that was launched a day prior and went on sale immediately. However, iQOO does get the credit for a fair few other firsts: the iQOO 3 is the first smartphone to come in 4G and 5G variants with Snapdragon 865 in both of them, and the first smartphone with UFS 3.1 storage. And while other parts of the phone may not be “firsts”, that doesn’t take away from the fact that they are equally impressive. For instance, there aren’t many differences between the 4G and 5G variant — to the best of our knowledge, the difference is restricted to hardware and software that enables 5G. The phone also has a 6.44″ FHD+ Super AMOLED display with a claimed peak brightness of 800 nits and HDR 10+ certification, along with 180Hz touch response rate (not to be confused with display refresh rate though).
The iQOO 3 also comes with the flagship Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 SoC, coupled with 8/12GB LPDDR5 RAM and 128/256GB of UFS 3.1 storage — all of which combined should give you a very competitive gaming phone for early 2020. We are slightly disappointed by the absence of high refresh rate on the display since that would have played in very well with the gaming characteristics of the phone — but you do get high touch response rate. The pressure-sensitive buttons on the right-side frame ensure that you get trigger buttons that can be mapped to different in-game functions, streamlining your game experience. There’s a healthy 4,400 mAh battery to ensure your gaming sessions last long, and 55W FlashCharge fast charging too that claims to charge 50% of the battery in 15 minutes, which is very impressive keeping in mind the size of the battery.
The camera specification on the phone also is up to the mark, on paper at least. Gaming phones have not been known to be excellent camera performers, so we won’t be too harsh on this end. The rear camera duties are handled by the Sony IMX582 (and not the IMX586), coupled with a telephoto, a wide-angle and a depth sensor for added versatility. The front camera is a 16MP shooter residing in the hole punch in the top right corner of the phone.
The iQOO 3 comes in three colors: Volcano Orange, Quantum Silver, and Tornado Black.
Pricing and Availability
As mentioned before, the iQOO 3 comes in two variants: a 4G variant and a 5G variant:
- 8GB + 128GB: ₹36,990 ($515)
- 8GB + 256GB: ₹39,990 ($557)
- 12GB + 256GB: ₹44,990 ($626)
The phone will go on sale from 4th March 2020 and will be available via Flipkart and iQOO.com. Launch offers for the phone include ₹3,000 cashback on ICICI Bank Debit and Credit Cards.