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Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: A detailed comparison of performance, features

Mohammad Faisal
Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: Comparing the two budget devices. (Express Photo: Mohammad Faisal)

Vivo U20, the second smartphone in Vivo's online exclusive U-series will go on sale for the time tomorrow at 12 noon. It has an upgraded set of specifications over its predecessor and follows the same aggressive pricing. In our review, we found Vivo U20 to be a good option for Rs 10,990. However, Xiaomi's budget smartphone Redmi Note 8 also falls in the same price bracket, and performs quite well.  So which device is the better pick? We compare the two smartphones.

Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: Price

Vivo U20 is priced at Rs 10,990 for the 4GB RAM + 64GB storage variant and Rs 11,990 for the 6GB RAM + 64GB storage. The Redmi Note 8 is priced at Rs 9,999 for the 4GB RAM+ 64GB storage model and Rs 12,999 for the 6GB RAM + 128GB model.

Both the phones are available on the Amazon during its Fab Phones Fest sale, where users can avail extra Rs 1000 off on the Vivo U20 on first sale tomorrow, while the Redmi Note 8 can also be availed with a discount of 10 per cent (Rs 999 for the base model) using the Axis Bank Debit Card.

Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: Design and display

Both the Vivo U20 and Redmi Note 8 have a great build and design, are compact with a nice grip, and look absolutely stunning. While both the phones have an identical back design, the glass back at the Redmi Note 8 gives it a more finished feel. However, the big camera bump doesn't allow the device to lie flat on a surface unless and until you are using the back case.

Vivo U20 will go on sale for the first time during the Fab Phones Fest.

Both phones sport an FHD+ IPS LCD screen with good colour reproduction. The Vivo U20 has a display size of 6.53-inch, whereas the Redmi Note 8 has a 6.3-inch screen. Vivo's screen is a bit brighter, but the viewing angles on Redmi's screen are better. The gaming experience on the Vivo U20 is better thanks to the brighter screen and the same goes with the video watching.

Redmi Note 8 (image) and Vivo U20 sport an identical back design (Express Photo: Mohammad Faisal)

However, since the viewing angles are not great on the Vivo U20, you can only enjoy videos when viewing at a straight 90-degree angle. The Redmi Note 8 allows you to watch videos at an angle if you prop the phone using a pop-socket or mobile stand.

Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: Performance

The Vivo U20 is powered by the Snapdragon 675 processor. The Redmi Note 8 is powered by the Snapdragon 665. Both the chips are based on the 11nm process, but the SD675 uses more powerful Kryo 460 cores as compared to the Kryo 260 cores on the SD665.  The SD675 is also paired with a slightly more powerful Adreno 615 GPU as compared to the Adreno 610 GPU of the SD665.

Both the phones handle day-to-day tasks easily without any lags or stutters and it is not easy to spot the difference in the performance of the two chips in regular usage. However, I found the performance of the Vivo U20 slightly better than the Redmi Note 8, when both the devices were pushed to the extreme.

The Vivo U20 gives better gameplay experience. While both the phones can play graphics-heavy games, the Vivo U20 and its SD675 chip is the clear winner here. Redmi Note 8 plays PUBG Mobile at medium settings, but the Vivo U20 gives a smoother gameplay experience at high settings. The graphics on Call of Duty Mobile are also better at the Vivo U20. Based on my experience, the Vivo U20 has the edge in gameplay.

Both the phones run Android 9 Pie with their own skins on top which come with a good set of customization options and gesture navigation.

Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: Camera

The Vivo U20 sports a triple-rear camera carrying a 16MP primary camera, an 8MP ultrawide camera, and a 2MP macro camera. The Redmi Note 8 comes with a quad-rear camera setup carrying a 48MP primary camera, an 8MP ultrawide camera, a 2MP bokeh camera, and a 2MP macro camera. In term of camera performance, Redmi Note 8 takes the lead.

Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: Both phones have an ultrawide and macro lens. (Express Photo: Mohammad Faisal)

The phones take good pictures with the primary camera in daylight conditions, but Redmi's images are crispier and have more details in comparison to the Vivo's images. The ultrawide lens and macro lens seem like a gimmick and do not produce good results on the Vivo U20. But the macro lens on the Redmi Note 8 is really good.

However, the ultrawide lens on the Redmi phone does not perform well either, but if one were to compare it, the Redmi phone manages to produce better results than the Vivo U20. The front camera on both the phones is almost similar in terms of performance and results. The Redmi has a 13MP front camera, Vivo sports a 16MP one.

Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: Battery

The Vivo U20 sports a bigger 5,000mAh battery, while the Redmi Note 8 sports a 4,000mAh. Both the phones offer similar battery backup of a one day with above moderate usage. However, when used only moderately, the Vivo U20 manages to last longer than the Redmi Note 8, which is expected given the battery size.

Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: Both phones retain the 3.5mm headphone jack. (Express Photo: Mohammad Faisal)

Both the phones support 18W fast charger that comes in the box, but the Vivo U20 has a micro USB port whereas the Redmi Note 8 has the newer USB Type-C port. Given the Redmi Note 8 has a smaller battery out of the two, it gets charged a bit faster.

Vivo U20 vs Redmi Note 8: Conclusion

There's no doubt that the Vivo U20 and Redmi Note 8 are value-for-money devices, with good looks and specifications. The performance on both phones is good, and the cameras pack a lot of features, given the budget price. If you want a phone that has good camera performance, go with the Redmi Note 8 and save Rs 1,000. But if your focus is on playing graphics-heavy games without any trouble, Vivo U20 would be the better pick.