Smartphone makers are constantly innovating to remain relevant. But the most recent and intriguing innovations haven’t been coming from the big guys will all the money like Apple or Samsung.
Out of nowhere, a relatively unknown Chinese smartphone company called Vivo has been making a splash in the smartphone scene this year, and it’s coming out with some really interesting innovations that we rarely see from big smartphone makers.
Check out Vivo’s ideas:
Vivo was the first company to successfully embed a fingerprint scanner underneath a smartphone display.
At CES 2018, Vivo showcased the first phone with an invisible fingerprint sensor that’s embedded underneath the display. Why is that so great? It keeps the practicality and reliability of the front-facing fingerprint sensor without the need for a wide bottom bezel.
In turn, the lack of a bottom bezel allows for a premium, modern bezel-less smartphone design.
This saves smartphone makers from placing the fingerprint sensor on the back. It’s actually more natural to have the fingerprint sensor on the back, but it forces you to pick up the phone to unlock it. I surely can’t be the only one who misses unlocking phones when they’re resting on a table.
Now, Vivo is making those invisible fingerprint scanners underneath its smartphone displays really, really big.
Vivo introduced its Apex Full View concept phone at MWC 2018 with a massive fingerprint sensor under the display. The innovation here solves the main problem with front-facing fingerprint scanners, where it’s not always natural or comfortable to contort your thumb to the bottom of the phone. Vivo’s concept lets you place your thumb closer to the center of the display, which is more comfortable, and it has a much larger sensing area than normal fingerprint scanners so you don’t have to be so precise with your thumb.
Vivo has also come up with a way to do something no other smartphone maker has been able to achieve.
Now that Apple has totally ditched the bottom bezel on the iPhone X, the next frontier for smartphone makers is to eliminate the top bezel, which would result in an all-screen smartphone. But no company has achieved this design without some sort of compromise – like a notch, or a slimmer top bezel – to fit all the usual sensors, earpieces, and selfie camera.
The Vivo Apex Full View concept phone has no notch, no ear piece, no visible selfie camera, and a near-non-existent top bezel that’s narrower than on any smartphone so far.
If any smartphone maker could make a phone without a notch, I’m assuming it probably would — especially Apple, which likes to ditch things that interrupt the beautiful designs of their gadgets, like headphones jacks on iPhone and ports on Mac laptops. I don’t mind the notch so much, but it’s absolutely an interruption of the iPhone X’s otherwise seamless edge-to-edge display.