iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up! iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

iQOO Z7 Pro Review – Switching things up!

iQOO’s 2023 product range has been thoughtfully curated to encompass a diverse selection of top-selling devices spanning various price segments. The company’s product portfolio revolves predominantly around gaming, with a specific focus on catering to the GenZ demographic. Among their latest offerings is the iQOO Z7 Pro, a departure from their conventional models, designed to align more closely with the preferences of individuals seeking a lifestyle-oriented smartphone.

The iQOO Z7 Pro boasts a sizable curved OLED display, houses a potent MediaTek Dimensity SoC, showcases an impressively sleek and lightweight design, offers rapid charging capabilities, and much more – all for a compelling price tag of INR 23,999. While these features hold considerable promise, the pivotal question remains: Can this phone truly establish itself as a compelling “value-for-money” choice amidst stiff competition? Let’s find the answer to this in our full review.

iQOO Z7 Pro Specifications

Before starting with the iQOO Z7 Pro review, let’s glance at the phone’s specifications, pricing, and things we get with the device.

  • Display: 6.78-inch FHD+ curved AMOLED, 120Hz refresh rate
  • CPU: Octa-core MediaTek Dimesnity 7200 processor
  • RAM: 8/12GB
  • Storage: 128/256GB
  • Software: Android 13, FunTouch OS 13
  • Main Camera: 64MP primary sensor + 2MP macro lens
  • Selfie Camera: 16MP
  • Connectivity: USB Type-C, Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth v5.0, GPS/ A-GPS, FM Radio, IR Blaster
  • Cellular: Dual SIM
  • Fingerprint Scanner: Yes, in-display
  • Battery: 4,600 mAh, non-removable
  • Charging: 66W fast charging

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

Design & Display

The standout feature of the iQOO Z7 Pro lies in its design, which gives off a sense of sophistication. With its elegantly curved front and back seamlessly blending into a plastic frame, the phone presents a premium aesthetic. Notably, the rear panel is crafted from AG Glass and changes shades depending on the angle and intensity of light it encounters.

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up! iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up! iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

Despite its substantial dimensions, the phone manages to maintain a lightweight feel, tipping the scales at just under 175 grams and boasting a slender 7.4mm thickness. However, this slim profile necessitates the omission of a 3.5mm headphone jack, a characteristic that can be found in many competing models. Moving to the back of the device, you’ll find a dual-camera setup, with individual lenses oriented vertically. This camera arrangement is accompanied by an LED ring flash, all housed within a dedicated camera island, with the iQOO logo gracing the lower section.

On the right edge of the phone, you’ll find the volume rockers and the power button, while the left side remains empty. At the bottom, you’ll find the SIM card slot, USB Type-C port, and the primary speaker, while a secondary microphone is placed at the top of the device.

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

One noteworthy feature of the Z7 Pro is that it marks the first instance of a curved display in iQOO’s budget smartphone lineup. The phone showcases a 6.78-inch AMOLED panel boasting a full-HD+ resolution and a brisk 120Hz refresh rate. The curved nature of the display adds a touch of premium allure without hindering everyday usability. Additionally, the slim bezels encircling the screen enhance its visual appeal.

In terms of display performance, the Z7 Pro delivers excellent viewing angles and vibrant colors, even while in standard display color mode. While official screen brightness figures haven’t been released by the company, the maximum brightness level suffices for outdoor usage. The display carries an HDR10+ certification, although it’s worth noting that some streaming applications like Netflix do not fully utilize this feature. Although the phone performs well for content consumption, the presence of a single bottom-firing speaker somewhat takes away the immersive audio experience.

Software & Performance

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

The iQOO Z7 Pro comes pre-installed with the Funtouch OS 13, based on Android 13, right out of the box. iQOO offers an assurance of two major Android version updates and a three-year commitment to providing security patches, which is certainly a positive aspect. Notably, the FunTouch OS does include a few pre-installed third-party applications such as Spotify, Byju’s, and Snapchat, but users have the option to remove them if they wish.

FunTouch OS 13 is designed with customization in mind, empowering users to tailor the operating system to their liking. This includes the ability to fine-tune animation effects, speed, and various routine tasks like charging settings and the transition between the lock screen and home screen. Moreover, the operating system integrates seamlessly with Android 13’s color palette, ensuring a cohesive look by harmonizing interface colors and system icons with the device’s wallpaper.

However, it’s worth noting that the OS does not fully adopt the ‘Material You’ theme and comes with a notable amount of bloatware, which can detract from the user experience right from the initial setup.

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

Shifting the focus to performance, the iQOO Z7 Pro is powered by the MediaTek Dimensity 7200 SoC, which we saw sometime back on the Vivo V27. During our review period, the phone essentially performed well in a wide variety of settings, handling everyday tasks and gaming effortlessly. The Dimensity 7200 chip ranks slightly above the Snapdragon 778G+ in terms of performance, registering 1,205 points in single-core and 2,639 points in multi-core CPU tests on Geekbench.

In the graphics department, the phone scored 3,457 points in OpenCL and 3,524 points in Vulkan. We also tested the phone’s gaming performance, and it proved itself more than capable of handling graphic intensive games like Call of Duty: Mobile and Asphalt 9 Legends, even on the highest possible graphics settings. It’s worth mentioning that the device did get slightly warm during extended gaming sessions, but this didn’t escalate into a major issue.

Camera & Battery

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

The iQOO Z7 Pro boasts a dual-camera arrangement on the back, comprising a 64MP ISOCELL GW3 primary sensor, accompanied by a 2MP macro camera. For selfies and video calls, there’s a 16MP front-facing camera.

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

In well-lit conditions, the primary camera captures images with sharp details and contrast, albeit with slightly oversaturated colors – a recurring trait in iQOO phones at launch. It also manages to maintain natural skin tones when taking human portraits. However, there is some inherent beautification happening in the background, even when all filters are disabled, a phenomenon observed in similarly priced Vivo smartphones as well. In low-light scenarios, the camera handles both highlights and shadows quite well. While extremely dark shots may have a touch of noise, it remains within acceptable limits for a sensor of this caliber.

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up! iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up! iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up! iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up! iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

The 2MP macro sensor yields passable results, but achieving precise focus can be a challenge, especially with unsteady hands. Notably, the absence of an ultrawide-angle lens is sorely felt here, and we hope iQOO considers retaining this in future iterations.

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

Turning our attention to battery performance, the iQOO Z7 Pro houses a 4,600mAh battery that comfortably sustains a full day of usage with moderate to light usage patterns. Throughout our review period, the phone consistently delivered around 6.5 hours of screen-on time. Despite a modest capacity cell, iQOO has executed optimizations to maximize battery life. The phone has fast charging support and the battery goes from zero to 100% in approximately an hour using the included 66W fast charger.

iQOO Z7 Pro Review – The Verdict

iQOO Z7 Pro Review - Switching things up!

The iQOO Z7 Pro does some things right including a solid battery life and fast charging support, coupled with impressive performance, rendering it an ideal choice for multimedia consumption. Nonetheless, there is room for improvement in the software side of things. On the flip side, the phone’s sole bottom-firing speaker, the absence of HDR support on OTT platforms, limited rear camera versatility, and other factors, may take away from the overall experience. While devices like the Nothing Phone (1) and Pixel 6a may excel in specific areas, the iQOO Z7 Pro remains an attractive overall option for those seeking a reliable choice priced under INR 25,000.