Vivo’s new flagship has a bigger, better in-display fingerprint sensor

Vivo has announced its latest flagship phone, the X80 Pro, and its most prominent new hardware feature is a larger in-display fingerprint sensor. The active area is much larger than the tiny sensors found on most Android phones today, meaning it’s easier to unlock the phone without looking at the screen to align your thumb.

The scanner has several advantages that go beyond just being physically larger. You can register each fingertip with a single touch of the screen, instead of lifting and pressing it several times as with conventional telephones. It works very fast, even if your hands or the screen are wet. The larger surface area also means you can set up the phone to require two simultaneous fingerprints for an extra layer of authentication.

The “3D Ultrasonic Large Fingerprint Sensor” technology actually comes from Qualcomm, which calls it “3D Sonic Max” and has touted its inclusion in a recent phone from Vivo’s gaming-focused sub-brand iQOO. The X80 Pro represents the most common implementation of this technology to date.

As a company, Vivo has done more than any other to popularize in-display fingerprint sensors, introducing the world’s first implementation on a shipping phone in 2018. Vivo has demonstrated greater scanning surfaces in “Apex” concept phones, including a “full display” version in its 2019 model, but the X80 Pro is one of the first commercial devices to actually ship with a module larger than the tip of your thumb.

Vivo is also increasingly known for its camera capabilities these days, and it’s a big focus with the X80 Pro. The Zeiss-branded camera hardware (complete with trademarked T* coating on the lenses) is similar to what we saw with last year’s X70 Pro Plus, although Vivo hasn’t announced a Plus version of the X80 Pro yet. There’s a 50-megapixel main sensor, a 48-megapixel ultrawide, a 12-megapixel 2x telephoto and an 8-megapixel 5x periscope telephoto, all housed in a giant camera bump. One difference is that the 2x lens now uses Vivo’s gimbal-style optical stabilization.

Vivo also uses a new custom image processing chip, the V1 Plus. Like Oppo’s MariSilicon X chip introduced earlier this year, the V1 Plus’s hardware is designed to handle image processing in difficult situations, such as video recording at night. Another processing-intensive use of the X80 Pro is a “cinematic video bokeh” mode designed to mimic the oval bokeh seen in shallow depth of field scenes shot with Zeiss anamorphic lenses. Vivo says the chip also reduces power consumption.

The other specs of the X80 Pro are typical of a 2022 flagship Android phone. There’s a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor, 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. The screen is a 6.78-inch 1440p curved OLED panel with a 120Hz refresh rate. The battery is 4,700 mAh and charges up to 80 W with a cable or 50 W wirelessly via Vivo’s proprietary FlashCharge system.

We don’t have any pricing or regional release information for the X80 Pro yet. It will likely hit the typical Vivo markets of India, Europe and East Asia.