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Lenovo Vibe S1 Hands-on, First Impressions: The Ultimate Selfie Phone?

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We go hands-on with the Vibe S1!

Along with the Vibe P1 and the P1m, Lenovo also launched their Vibe S1 in the PH. The Vibe S1 is Lenovo’s latest entry into the burgeoning mid-range market that’s fast becoming the next key battleground for international mobile brands. Lenovo’s turning to the power of dual cameras to entice potential buyers to the Vibe S1, though instead of employing twin rear cameras, the Chinese brand is putting twin cameras on the front of the phone.

Lenovo Vibe S1 specs

  • 1.7GHz MediaTek MT6752 octa-core processor
  • ARM Mali-T760 MP2
  • 3GB of RAM
  • 5-inch full HD display, 1920 x 1080
  • 32GB of storage, expandable via microSD
  • 13-megapixel rear camera with dual LED
  • 8-megpixel dual front cameras
  • Dual SIM
  • 3G, LTE
  • WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, A-GPS
  • Android 5.0 Lollipop, Vibe UI
  • 2500mAh battery

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Initial impressions: thin, sleek and beautiful, though we’re still not sold on the dual selfie cameras

If the Vibe P1 is the literal chubby powerhouse of today’s festivities, the Vibe S1 is its sleek counterpart. After handling the chubby 9.9mm P1, the Vibe S1 felt downright anemic at 7.8mm. The S1 is also smaller than the P1, and because of that feels easier to grip in the hand, and is not difficult to use one-handed, and while Lenovo decided to use a glossy finish on the back of the S1, it’s tasteful and well done which is more than we can say for the offerings of other brands.

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Looking at the phone dead on from the front, you’ll immediately notice the twin selfie cameras that reside on the top of the phone. Just like Starmobile’s Knight Spectra, the two cameras are not equal – one is an 8-megapixel unit that captures images while the other is a 2-megapixel shooter that captures depth information and other parameters.

Regular selfie
Regular selfie

 

With depth of field applied
With depth of field applied

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The S1 then uses the information captured on the second camera to apply depth of field effects on selfies, and the camera app included in the phone gives users a wide array of options when taking self portraits.

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The Vibe S1 employs a 5-inch, full HD display that gives it a pixel density of 441ppi. Much like the Vibe P1 there’s not really a lot to complain about with the Vibe S1’s display – it’s bright, has nice colors and more than generous viewing angles.

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Turning the phone over you’ll see the lone 13-megapixel camera on the back, with the LED flash right below it. Both the power and volume keys are located on the right of the phone.

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For once we’re talking about a mid-range smartphone that doesn’t use Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 615 processor – no, the Vibe S1 uses MediaTek’s MT6752 processor running at 1.7GHz, paired with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of expandable storage. That means that the Vibe S1 is potentially faster and more powerful than its chubby P1 brother, though all that power is sustained by a small 2,500mAh battery. Just like the P1, the Vibe S1 has Lenovo’s Vibe UI running on top of Android 5.1.

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Lenovo’s pricing the Vibe S1 at Php 15,999. It’s quite a bit more than other mid-rangers of its rivals, but Lenovo is betting that selfie obsessed folks looking for a unique take on self-portraits will pony up the cash for the Vibe S1.

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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3 Comments

  1. Selfie-obsessed folks are usually dumb teens or low-salaried employees who won’t be able to afford this. Di nga sumikat yung Cherry Mobile Selfie or yung Asus Selfie. Besides, no one really cares about Lenovo phones except for the A7000.

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