Oppo Find X quick review: Truly bezel-less display with popping cameras
Oppo finally announced the Find X flagship for the Indian market on Thursday at an event in New Delhi. The Find X is the first smartphone in the Find-series since seven years and it is every bit as futuristic as you expected it to be. Oppo has crammed in a number of 2018 trends which includes a full-screen, bezel-less display on a phone that's almost entirely made up of glass along with the year's best mobile hardware inside championed by a Snapdragon 845 chipset.
But what sets the Find X apart from pretty much every other Android flagship today is that there is no notch to be found here. What you get instead is a whopping 93.8 per cent screen-to-body ratio, a motorised camera system and some flagship-grade hardware, all for Rs 59,990. The price doesn't appear too bad considering the Find X costs 999 Euros (approx Rs 80,000) outside. We spent some time with the device to find out whether the Find X really is something straight out of the future.
The first thing you notice about the Find X is its stunning all-glass design. The device is carved out of Gorilla Glass 5 on the front and the back. The glass curves around the edges, making it look similar to the Galaxy S9. The Find X is offered in Glacier Blue and Bordeaux Red colours, which looks simply stunning. The colour mainly stays around the edge and grows dark in the middle. Both the colour options look subtle and fantastic and you can see it turn a shade lighter or darker depending on the angle you view it in. There's also a curve on the top which is actually part of the motorised slide. But Oppo has designed it to look like liquid glass joining the rest of the back, which adds to the overall aesthetics.
Moving on to the display, the Find X brings a tall 6.4-inch 1080p+ OLED display with a 19.5:9 aspect ratio. You get practically no noticeable bezels on the sides and there's no notch on the top as well. Apart from a thin strip of bezel on the bottom, the Find X is practically all display on the front. Oppo has used an OLED panel which really pops on screen. Colours look deep and punchy with good visibility and viewing angles. We couldn't take the phone outdoors so we cannot say how the display holds under bright sunlight.
With no notch and barely any bezels, Oppo decided to hide the cameras and sensors in a slider mechanism that pops out from the top of the phone. And this is the next big highlight of the Find X. The motorised slider, which Oppo calls 3D Stealth Camera, raises the three cameras from the top of the phone when unlocking using 3D facial recognition and whenever you need to use the camera app. It takes about a second for the slider to open and close, but it happens pretty smoothly. Because of the time taken to raise the mechanism, face unlock will not be as snappy as what you typically see on most other phones today.
However, in my brief time with the device, I found the whole biometrics process to be fast enough. Unlocking the phone quickly raises the slider and unlocks the phone in a little less than a second. The various sensors like infrared camera and dot projector make up what Oppo calls 3D Structured Light Face Recognition Technology. This makes a 3D map of your face to make thing more accurate and secure, similar to the iPhone X.
The slider mechanism also means opening the camera app will see a bit of a delay, but not so much so as to raise any concern. It may not be snappy at opening, but the mechanism works quite fast and I was pleasantly surprised with how quickly the whole biometric process takes place. Of course, with any mechanised part, there arises questions on how well it will hold up after repeatedly opening and closing hundreds of times over several months. Another issue is of water and dust seeping through the gap and accidentally raising the system when kept inside the pocket, but those are questions that require a little more hands-on time to answer.
The Find X also brings the best hardware you can find inside a 2018 Android phone which includes a Snapdragon 845 chipset, up to 8GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage. The special Lamborghini edition model packs 512GB of storage with the same amount of RAM. That's a lot of firepower and memory inside a phone and that's exactly how it feels while using it briefly. Apps opened and closed quite fast and browsing through the UI was generally swift. As we couldn't put the Find X under intensive use, it's too soon to say how well the phone will hold under heavy usage. But the specs do suggest a pretty fast flagship on offer.
The Find X runs Android 8.1 Oreo-based ColorOS 5.1, which means you will get Oppo's custom skin on top with some Oppo-specific features like Safe Box that lets you hide apps you don't want others to see. This also means the app icons and some of the user interface will look a little bit like iOS. ColorOS brings a few pre-loaded apps like Facebook, but I can't say I found a lot of bloatware. This will help keep things smooth over time as well so that's something to look forward to.
The demo unit we tested did have a few glitches, especially with the camera app as it crashed quite a few times, but consumer units should not see such glitches.
The cameras fitted in the slider mechanism includes a 25-megapixel front sensor with f/2.0 aperture and 3D portrait lighting.
The dual rear camera setup includes a 16-megapixel primary sensor and a 20-megapixel secondary sensor with OIS and f/2.0 aperture. We tested the cameras briefly indoors and found that the cameras, both front and back, generally let in a good amount of light even in dimly lit settings. The cameras do tens to soften the subjects face and there's a fair bit of AI processing that happens under-the-hood, but details look good.
In brighter condition indoors, the cameras perform better, offering more detail and colour. The cameras take a bit of help from AI as the rear cameras are able to recognise 21 different photography mode, and as many as 800 scenarios. The camera rightly detected that we were taking photos indoors, so it customised the settings based on that. We couldn't test out the various modes like portrait and video and we will have more on that in our review.
The Find X is backed by a 3,730 mAh battery with support for VOOC fast charging. Oppo promises two hours of talktime with just 5 minutes of charge. Oppo's technology is not unlike OnePlus' Dash Charge tech, which means you should see similar fast charging speed with the Find X. We will need more time with the Find X to test how well the battery hold with intensive day-to-day use.
The Find X looks absolutely stunning on first look and this is thanks to a flowing edge-to-edge display and a unique glass design on the back. The phone also packs tons of premium hardware inside that can take on the likes of the Galaxy S9, OnePlus 6 and other 2018 flagships. While the Find X looks great and is everything one would want from a 2018 flagship, we'll know how the motorised system works and whether it is capable of surviving everyday wear and tear after a more in-depth look.