Why it matters to you
The dual-lens camera craze shifts from the back of our phones to the front
The dual-lens camera craze seen on seemingly every new smartphone recently, from the iPhone 7 Plus to the Honor 6X, has shifted from only being present on the back of your phone, to the front. You know what that means? Bokeh-effect selfies, without the need to ask one of your friends to take the picture for you.
We’re being introduced to this feature by Chinese manufacturer Vivo and its new V5 Plus smartphone. Above the display is a 20-megapixel — yes, really — main camera and a secondary 8-megapixel camera, both with f/2.0 apertures. Used together, they will keep the main subject of your photo in focus and blur out the background, just like pictures taken by professional photographers with expensive cameras.
Vivo also gives you the chance to go back and readjust the focus point, or take it out completely, ensuring the photo comes out exactly as you want. Vivo’s added a flash it calls the Selfie Spotlight, plus a beauty mode helps make reality a little less jarring. Apple calls its bokeh mode Portrait, an appropriate name as the effect definitely works best when taking photos of people. We tend to take a lot of pictures of ourselves, so adding the same technology to the front of the phone makes plenty of sense.
The V5 Plus’s rear camera doesn’t have two lenses, and makes do with a single 16-megapixel sensor, proving Vivo is aiming this phone at the selfie mad. The rest of the spec is middle-of-the-road. The screen measures 5.5-inches and has a 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution, while power comes from a Snapdragon 625 octa-core chip, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of internal storage space.
It uses Android 6.0 Marshmallow, which isn’t the latest version of Google’s operating system, and it has Vivo’s own user interface over the top. The phone’s body is made of metal, there’s a fingerprint sensor in the home button, and the 3160mAh battery comes with Vivo’s own fast charging system.
Vivo doesn’t sell its phones in the U.S. or Europe, so if you really want one, you’ll have to find a willing importer. The phone is expected to cost around $400. However, we doubt this will be the only phone to add a dual-lens camera to its feature list this year.