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Vivo Y21T Review Philippines: Slow But Steady

by Jal Cutaran  March 16, 2022

Review verdict: Despite the so-so specs of the vivo Y21T for the Philippines, it is surprisingly capable of running hardware-demanding games and applications. As such, you may want to consider this phone if you want something affordable but somehow capable.

Pros

  • 4+1 Extended RAM mode
  • Ultra Game Mode is very handy
  • Looks classy and premium

Cons

  • Mediocre processor
  • Camera quality is below average
  • Crappy single speaker

vivo Y21T Review Philippines Specs

  • Snapdragon 680 Processor
  • 4GB RAM
  • 128GB storage
  • 6.51-inch HD+ IPS LCD display
  • 50-megapixel f/1.8 Main Camera, 2-megapixel f/2.4 macro camera, 2-megapixel f/2.4 depth sensor
  • 8-megapixel f/1.8 selfie camera
  • 4G, LTE
  • WiFi, Bluetooth 5.0, side-mounted fingerprint scanner
  • 5000 mAh Battery
  • 18W fast charging
  • Android 11, Funtouch 12

Y21T, the latest addition to vivo’s Y-series lineup, was officially launched in the Philippines last February 19. It features a premium design, 4+1GB extended RAM, and a 50MP main camera among others. Despite not having the most exciting hardware combination, the phone still manages to perform well, mostly thanks to vivo’s optimization and software tools. 

Vivo Y21T Review Philippines:

Design

Our test unit comes in Pearl White which we found find attractive and premium-looking. It’s really well made, and it’s hard to believe that the body uses polycarbonate for the back panel. vivo has done an excellent job making the phone more premium than it actually is, and the light-changing coating on the surface gives it an extra visual pop.

Adding more elegance is the simple and functional overall design of the phone: the power button and volume rocker are found on the right side; the SIM card tray is alone on the top side; and the speaker, USB-C port, as well as the 3.5mm jack are all confined on the bottom side, leaving the right side empty and neat.

Even the front and the back look simple, in a good way. The teardrop notch complements the slightly plentiful bezel, the chrome vivo logo adding a bit of sophistication.

Display

The vivo Y21T’s display is nothing special. You’re looking at a 6.51-inch IPS LCD screen with a maximum resolution of HD+.

Interestingly, the relatively small resolution on this phone translates to a better FPS when playing games. Thanks to the low-resolution screen, the GPU has to do less work, resulting in more consistent FPS numbers, which ultimately results in smoother, lag-free gameplay. 

Vivo Y21T Review Philippines:

Don’t get it wrong though, the screen is still good for casual use. In fact, the picture quality is acceptable and the colors are somehow vivid and accurate. 

As for the speaker, the sound quality may annoy those with sensitive ears. It comes from a single downward-firing speaker that instantly becomes distorted at maximum volume. Fortunately, the phone comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack to accommodate audio gear.

Cameras

Just like the display, the camera of the vivo Y21T is so-so: it’s not bad, but it’s not great either. This is despite having a triple-camera setup consisting of 50MP main, 2MP macro, and 2MP depth.

Nice shots are possible as long as the subject is cooperative and the lighting is generous. Having said that, don’t expect quality photos with moving objects and in low light scenarios. Check out the sample photos:

Our comments for the main camera translate for the 8-megapixel selfie cam too – it’s good enough for social media, but it’s not stellar enough if you want to do more with it. The phone does have an AI beauty mode to make your selfies better—by making your skin flawless and natural-looking. 

Vivo Y21T Review Philippines:

Performance, software, battery life

The performance of the vivo Y21T is absolutely interesting. Inside vivo’s latest budget gaming smartphone is a not-so-special processor in the form of Qualcomm Snapdragon 680. It is an octa-core CPU with Adreno 610 GPU capable of running as high as 2.4GHz. It also comes with 128GB of internal storage. What’s unusual with the Y21T is that it comes with 4GB of RAM that can extend up to 5GB by using idle storage space. 

Despite the mediocre internals, we installed three popular games to test its performance: Wilf Rift: League of Legends, Call of Duty Mobile, and Asphalt 9: Legends. Each game was played in the highest possible settings for 3-5 continuous hours.

The result was a total surprise. We did not encounter any lag or overheating. How can a processor that we had issues with in other phones work so well in this particular device? Well, it’s all because of that HD+ screen, software optimization, and what vivo claims are cooling components built into the device. 

Running the Y21T is the FunTouch OS 12 based on Android. To make games and apps run smoothly, it employs the Multi-Turbo 5.0 feature which is capable of enhancing the system processor speed according to vivo. There is also the Ultra Game Mode which allows you to switch anytime between battery mode, balanced mode, and performance mode. It will also monitor the real-time CPU and GPU usage so you can adjust accordingly. And to keep the temperature down during heavy usage, vivo equipped it with a cooling system consisting of a graphite cooling plate, a high thermal conductivity copper foil, a thermally conductive gel, and an intelligent cooling management system.

As for the battery, it comes with a massive 5,000mAh battery with 18W fast charging support. PCMark battery test for this device is 24 hours and 46 mins. It charges from 0 to 30% in 20 minutes and 0 to 100% in almost 2 hours.

Vivo Y21T Review Philippines:

Wrap-up and verdict

The vivo Y21T looks like a pretty run-of-the-mill budget phone in our review of it for the Philippines, but this pretty face is surprisingly capable when it comes to gaming, and has the battery endurance to go the extra mile.

vivo Y21T Price Philippines

vivo Y21T has a price tag of  PHP 10,999 in the Philippines. It is currently available on Shopee and Lazada.

 

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