The Y53 is Vivo’s latest budget offering, sporting decent specs for only PhP5,990. It has a 5-inch display, a quad-core processor, and a look that resembles the more premium devices above it. But are you actually getting your money’s worth? Is this better than what the competition offers at the same price point? Let’s find out in this full review.

Design and Build Quality

Though the body is primarily made of plastic, the overall look of the Y53 resembles that of the more expensive models from the company. Thanks to the smaller form factor, handling won’t be an issue even for people with small hands.

The volume rocker and power button is located on the right side, with a finish that fits nicely with the overall design and feel less wobbly than I expected. On the left side is a Hybrid SIM Card slot.

The back sports the familiar lines along with the Vivo branding.

Up top is the 3.5mm headphone jack, while the bottom houses a single speaker, a Microphone, and a standard MicroUSB port.

Display

The Y53’s display isn’t as vibrant as what you would usually see on other Vivo devices. It’s bright alright, but colors are pale and text isn’t as sharp, making the overall quality sort of underwhelming. I guess if there was a compromise in this device, it’s in this area.

Performance

Vivo Y53 Specs:

  • 1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 Quad-Core Processor
  • 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage expandable via MicroSD Card (Up to 256GB)
  • 5.0-inch display, 540 x 960 pixels
  • 8MP Rear Camera, AF
  • 5MP Front Camera, Screen Flash
  • 4G/LTE, Dual SIM
  • 2500mAh battery
  • Funtouch OS 3.0 on top of Android Marshmallow
  • Colors: Gold, Gray
  • Sensors:
    • Proximity
    • Light
    • Compass
    • Accelerometer

The Y53’s processing package was able to handle the usual tasks that a casual user would do, including email, music, social media, and web browsing. Switching between apps was also seamless.

Both Mobile Legends and 2K17 are playable in this device. Though you’ll have to stay at the lowest settings for smoother gameplay. No eye-candy graphics, but at least you can play.

Camera

For what it’s worth, the Y53’s 8MP main camera was able to take some decent photos in daylight and even in less than ideal conditions. Detail and sharpness isn’t that great, but color accuracy is spot on.

As for the 5MP selfie camera, it’s good if the lighting is good. Otherwise, you get noise and over processing.

The default camera app gives you pretty much the basic modes that you’ll need for casual snaps. And if you do prefer to tweak the settings for each shot yourself, there’s also Pro mode.

Software

The Y53 runs on Vivo’s Funtouch OS on top of Android Marshmallow. Navigating the UI was smooth and fluid, and it still offers features and options that I have come to like in other Vivo smartphones such as double tap to sleep/wake, and the panel that shows up when you swipe up from the bottom of the screen. The music app still looks as clean as ever, minus the hi-fi option.

Battery

With light to moderate usage, the Y53 will last you an entire work shift without having to recharge. At around 2.5 hours of charging time from zero to full, it’s not the fastest, but you simply can’t expect any more at this price point.

Verdict

The Y53 seems to have all the basics covered. The design is nice, the performance is more than enough for a budget device, the cameras can take decent photos, and the software is well optimized.

On the other hand, the display is a bit underwhelming, low-light camera performance is about what you’d expect, and the build quality could be better. But if you can get past all that, you’ll find that the Y53 is still a decent choice for what you’ll be paying for it.

The Good

  • Design
  • General Performance
  • Battery Life
  • Rear/Front Camera Performance (Day)
  • Well-Optimized Software
  • Price

The Not So Good

  • Build Quality
  • Display
  • Gaming Performance
  • Front Camera Performance (Low Light)

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Author

Emman has been writing technical and feature articles since 2010. Prior to this, he became one of the instructors at Asia Pacific College in 2008, and eventually landed a job as Business Analyst and Technical Writer at Integrated Open Source Solutions for almost 3 years.

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