The OPPO F7 is one of the selfie-centric handsets this year that boasts of long lasting performance with the 3400 mAh battery backed with AI Battery Management, a 25 MP AI powered selfie, a one of a kind viewing experience with a 19:9 aspect ratio among other interesting features. Here’s my review of the phone:
2018 is a year full of notches and it seems we need to start getting comfortable with them. Be it any phone, if there’s a notch on it then that’s the first thing you’ll notice and this is no different with the OPPO F7.
The gadget also comes with a plastic body with a high gloss finish at the back which gives the head-turner look wherever you go with it. I only wish it had a metallic body since the gloss finish also brings with it a couple of unwanted fingerprints, I didn’t notice it at first since the phone came with a back cover but it’s one of those things you just can’t shake off once you notice because without a back cover, you find yourself wiping the back of the device more often than you need to.
The OPPO F7 is also quite the light device, gaad! According to its specs, it only weighs 158g.
As far as what buttons are placed where, the F7 has its power button on the right along with hybrid SIM slot, volume rocker keys on the left and 3.5mm audio jack, speaker grille and microUSB port placed at the bottom. The notch houses the selfie camera and the earpiece. On the back, you get a single rear camera along with an LED flash and centrally placed fingerprint scanner.
The display is undoubtedly one of the main talking points in the Oppo F7. It features a 6.23-inch full HD+ IPS screen of 2280x1080p resolution.
Once you switch on the device, you’re greated with an all too-bright Red theme which I personally didn’t mind but you still have a variety of options to change it as soon as possible if you find it too much for you
What got me hooked to this device wasn’t even the camera (at first), it was its 19:9 aspect ratio that does look super appealing when watching movies and videos. Like most other full screen handsets, the OPPO F7 has on-screen navigation keys that hide while operating a full screen app but appear as soon as you tap on the screen. The colour reproduction of images and videos are also quite amazing with this device even on tilted angles
If you don’t fancy the notch blocking you while watching videos or using certain apps, you have the option to switch off “Notch Area Display” if you encounter a situation where the app content gets blocked by the notch area.
Sunlight legibility is also an issue with this phone. If you’re regularly using the OPPO F7 in places where the sun is all up in your face, then the brightness levels won’t be enough for you. I’ve only seen this feature with the Samsung S7 Edge where the device automatically adjusts it’s brightness levels.
One of my friends said how he’d gladly give all his money to buy the phone since it’s processor is likened to that of a small laptop and I thought he was joking until I tried it out!
First of, the handset has two storage options — 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage and it runs on Android Oreo 8.1 out-of-the-box with Oppo’s Color OS 5.0 UI, and thanks to this, it comes with a lot of customization options.
Other features include ‘Quiet Time‘ which puts the phone in silent mode for a set time period of the day; ‘Full Screen Multitasking‘ which places the app shortcuts on the notch area of the smartphone. This then leads to a floating window of the opened app. Besides this, you also get handy access to functions such as screen recording, screenshot and blocking notifications, through this feature of Full Screen Multitasking. These shortcuts were also accessible while watching Netflix and other videos and in my opinion they were quite handy. The F7 also comes with the standard assistive ball and gesture and motion support as well.
The OPPO F7 also brought with it a brand new mid-range Helio P60 processor from MediaTek. Compared to its predecessor, the MT6763T Helio P23, this new chipset performs a lot better and it’s a welcome addition. The MediaTek processor surprisingly handled all my routine tasks with consummate ease even when I was running around all day I didn’t notice any lagging or heating up because of that very handy chipset. I was actually more than impressed with the performance of the Oppo F7.
Face Unlock and Security
As for security, you get both fingerprint scanner and a facial unlock support. There is a OPPO Secure keyboard that appears every time you have to input a password or OTP-Pin.
The Oppo F7 also offers an in-built TrueCaller type functionality to block harassment/fraud calls and identification of unknown numbers. The facial unlock feature works perfectly fine and unlocks the handset in a blink of an eye.
This is where the F7 shines.
The camera which is the most emphasized and advertised feature of the Oppo F7 comes equipped with an Artificial Intelligence-based selfie camera of 25MP Sony sensor, with an f/2.0 aperture and sensor HDR that is claimed to ‘capture the real you’.
The F7 comes with features such as front bokeh effect (blurring of background when your face is in focus), which was good enough.
There is also an option to manually choose the beautification and on the higher side, the smartphone does make them look a bit artificial.
For beautification, the camera has AI Beauty Technology 2.0 which I sometimes found to be a bit too much. Let me explain. As much as I’d love to share and show off my best selfies, I felt the A.I Beauty Technology sometimes overdid it in beautifying pictures; there were a couple of pictures that made me look plastic but i found my way around it.
The rear camera was only 16MP – with features such as with f/1.8 aperture, phase detection autofocus – which I found a bit underplayed considering all the options given with the selfie camera. I get that it’s primarily a selfie gadget, but I felt they would have done more with this rising age of guys using their phones as their primary cameras for events, travel and what not.
It however didn’t disappoint when it came to taking pictures at night/low-lit situations. Using the back LED flash, you’re able to capture images with accurate colours and detailing, something which really blew my mind.
Besides this, shots in natural light as well as indoor lighting conditions turned out to be pretty neat. There is also a Super Vivid mode that increases the contrast. This feature can be used in only a few circumstances, other times, it just overdoes an image making them look artificial.
During the launch, it was announced that the device will also come with AR stickers and various filters in-built in the camera app of the smartphone – which I only sampled at the device launch and not during the review since I’m not such a big fan.
The 3400mAh battery on the Oppo F7 lasts just about a day easily with slightly heavy usage. This involves routine tasks, as well as long hours watching videos, using social media or even gaming
For a more moderate user, it can sustain more than a day’s work load.
I almost forgot to mention the OPPO Game Acceleration feature that helps to block out any incoming calls and messages while gaming. It also helps to optimize the games for the best performance! Quite nifty huh?
The Oppo F7 performs wonderfully well when it comes to the display, performance and obviously lives up to OPPO’s claim as a selfie expert.
At a starting price of Kshs 35,990, the Oppo F7 is a pretty amazing gadget to be considered for your next buy!