When the Vivo NEX launched last year, it was one of the first smartphones to feature a pop-out camera, an in-display fingerprint sensor, and basically nothing but screen and some super-slim bezels on the front.

The upcoming Vivo NEX 3 takes the screen-to-body ratio to another level by sporting a curved glass display that wraps around the sides of the phone — the left and right sides are basically half screen, half phone.

While Samsung has been using curved displays to increase the screen size of its phones for years, the Vivo NEX 3 display extends further than the screens on any Samsung phone to date.

Vivo hasn’t officially launched the new phone yet, but the company sent a demo unit to YouTuber Mrwhosetheboss, who has posted a video giving us a pretty good look at the first phone with a so-called “waterfall display.”

While he doesn’t share any specs for the phone yet, aside from the fact that it supports 5G connectivity, the video does emphasize just how much this phone appears to be nearly all-screen on the front.

Games, videos, and photos extend from edge to edge of the display (and a little over the sides of the display, quite honestly. And to demonstrate what it’s like to snap photos using a phone with no bezels, Mrwhosetheboss visits some popular tourist spots in London and captures images in a way that allows the picture on the phone to blend in with the real-world scenery almost seamlessly (once you get over the color differences).

He also points out that the phone has nearly seamless sides — because there are no physical power or volume buttons on the left or right side of the phone. Instead there are capacitive buttons with haptic feedback that you can press to adjust the volume, and a power button on top of the phone.

The phone has two mics, no headphone jack, and a USB-C port. And that’s about all we know so far — it appears that Vivo isn’t ready to announce the processor, memory, storage, or camera specs just yet.

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5 replies on “Vivo NEX 3 “waterfall display” smartphone previewed”

  1. They were so busy figuring out if they could do it, nobody stopped to ask if they should.

  2. So when I put a nice case on my curved-screen phone…
    Or design a UI that I can see with my eyes in conventional positions…
    The curved screen is worthless.

    When I want to put a screen protector on my phone…
    Or repair a damaged screen…
    The curved screen is expensive.

    So aside from a brief moment of excitement when buying, what’s the advantage?

    1. Uh. Think of the manufacturer, sir. How on earth would they be able to further overcharge for the screen replacement without the curves?

      1. They removed the physical buttons too.
        Given a bit more courage, they would’ve removed the microSD slot, DualSIM, Headphone Jack, Earpiece, and USB-C port.

        Your phone would come from your carrier with the e-SIM attached (non-removable). All Connectivity will be Wireless. Sound will come from a vibrating screen, not a loudspeaker. And charging the device will be done only wirelessly. Software updates will be paid for DLC content. Welcome to the future!

        (run by corporations, paid by dumb consumers)

    2. I don’t think the curved screen is actually that expensive to make, given how there’s a ton of cheap Chinese phones that use curved screens. They’re just curved less…but I’ve noticed that all of those curve by nearly the same amount. I couldn’t tell you how things got this way, but now that we’re here, curved screens could actually be the cheaper (to build) option, due to economies of scale. It appears that the same piece of glass covers the back as well as the front on these phones, they just cut holes in it for cameras, which I guess is cheaper than the tooling for other material and ordering less bulk quantities of glass.
      Speaking of tooling, there’s computer controlled machines that can rapidly curve glass now, so I can’t imagine curved glass is several orders of magnitude more costly than flat glass.
      This is all speculation of course. And the screen is certainly more expensive for you to replace when you inevitably drop your smooth glass sandwich with no grip surfaces on it.

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