iQoo Z3 Review

Read our full review of iQoo Z3 5G (8GB + 256 GB variant) to find out if it's worth buying or not in comparison to OnePlus Nord CE 5G in India.

iQoo Z3 Review
iQoo Z3 Review
For the last couple of years, 5G has been the most talked-about tech topic in India for telecom and the smartphone industry. Companies across the board are preparing for it, be it telecom players or smartphone makers. With Jio, Airtel, and Vi working on bringing high-speed internet to mobile devices, the smartphone manufacturers have already started adding to the excitement with their latest 5G-enabled device launches in India.
Adding to the frenzy, Vivo's sub-brand iQoo has also introduced its first mid-range 5G device in India, the iQoo Z3. The new Z-series phone comes with a 120Hz screen, Qualcomm Snapdragon 768G SoC, and a 64MP camera apart from 5G tech. With this new offering, the company hopes to grow its foothold in the Indian smartphone market's mid-segment.

The new iQoo Z3 price in India starts at Rs. 19,990 for the 6GB RAM + 128GB storage variant. The 8GB RAM + 128GB storage model is priced at Rs. 20,990 and the top-of-the-line 8GB RAM + 256GB storage option is priced at Rs. 22,990. We reviewed the 8GB + 256 GB variant of iQoo Z3 for around a week and here is what we think about the latest offering from this Vivo sub-brand.

iQoo Z3 Review: Looks, Build, and Design

In terms of design, the smartphone scores decent marks and most of the credit goes to the matte back panel. The iQoo Z3 comes in two colours options - Ace Black and Cyber Blue. But we used the latter one. The smartphone comes multi-colour pearlescent finish and better at resisting fingerprints. The display on the phone with a Corning Gorilla Glass equivalent Panda glass that aims to limit scratches and scuffs to a certain degree.

iQoo z3 full back

The top of the frame gets the SIM card tray while the right side of the frame gets the volume rockers and the power button which also embeds a fingerprint sensor as well. The fingerprint reader is easy to reach and unlocks the smartphone quickly. There is a 3.5mm headphone jack at the bottom along with the single speaker, the primary microphone and a Type-C USB port for charging.

Overall, the iQoo Z3 5G is a decent looking well-built smartphone and it is quite easy for one-hand operations.

iQoo z3 grill

iQoo Z3 Display Review:

The iQoo Z3 features a 6.58-inch IPS LCD FHD+ screen that supports a dynamic 120Hz refresh rate. One can lock the phone at 60Hz, 90Hz, 120Hz or set it on a 'Smart Switch' mode that dynamically switches refresh rates according to the apps you are using.

Colour reproduction, as well as viewing angles, are decent on this iQoo Z3 display panel. Although I should mention, nowadays it is mostly standard in all smartphones in the particular segment. Overall, we feel that the iQoo Z3 display panel offers a good experience while watching movies, gaming, or just reading long articles or e-book.

iQoo z3 display

I used the phone to watch a recently released web series on Amazon Prime - 'The Family 2', and it was a decent experience. In day-to-day use, the display is quite bright enough for outdoors and you'll not have issues with viewing angles. In my review time, even while playing games the display panel was quite bright and rich. I did not encounter any frame tearing with 120Hz refresh rate settings.

iQoo Z3 Performance Review:

The phone is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 768G SoC, which is 5G enabled. The new SoC scored 382277 in Antutu, which is higher than the SD 765 and SD 750 powered devices. The smartphone touched 12011 in the 3D Mark's Wild Life Extreme Stress test. The processor is coupled with up to 8GB LPDDRX4 RAM and 256GB UFS 2.2 storage on the top variant. However, iQOO claims an extended RAM feature allows the phone to use 3GB more RAM from the internal storage.

During our review, we did not feel any lag while using the device for everyday tasks such as using it for emails, calls, surfing, browsing, watching videos, etc.

iQoo z3 back camera

Apart from daily usage, gaming on the device was smooth. We played CoD Mobile at its highest settings and it ran just fine. However, after playing 4 to 5 games back to back the smartphone heats up. But, this is one of the major issues of mid-range smartphones.

As far as the software is concerned, the smartphone runs on Vivo's FunTouch OS 11 based on Android 11. It is the same custom skin that was recently launched by Vivo X60-series devices. The skin comes with new design language, typography, iconography, animations along overall upgraded visuals.

Even, the single speaker at the bottom gets quite loud.

iQoo Z3 Camera Review:

Coming to the camera unit, the iQoo Z3 5G comes with a triple-lens camera setup at the back that includes a 64-megapixel primary lens, an 8-megapixel 120-degree ultra-wide lens, and a 2-megapixel macro lens. Primary camera features include Night mode, Portrait, Photography, Video, Panorama, Live Photo, Slo-Motion, Time-Lapse, Pro mode, AR Stickers, and Doc. It boasts EFB (eye, face, body) autofocus tracking, and Super Night Mode supported by several filters for low light photography.

During our review, we found that the setup to be good for this price point. In general review comparision, the iQoo Z3 rear camera clicks decent photos in sunlight or the best possible lighting condition. Even more, the setup also delivers the decent shots in dark or the absence of abundant light. It surprisingly offers better than expected picture quality in different lighting conditions. I quite liked the bokeh shots. Checkout some of the camera samples below.

iQoo Z3 camera sample 1

iQoo z3 camera sample 3

iQoo Z3 camera sample 5

iQoo night pic

On the video front, the rear camera can record 4K videos at 60 fps. During our review, we used the phone to shoot some of our review products, and overall the quality of the video was decent and microphones picked up our audio nicely.

On the front, the iQ00 Z3 packs a 16-megapixel single lens shooter for selfies, which turned out packed with details during my testing. If you love clicking selfies more often and posting them on Instagram that case you would definitely love the phone.

iQoo Z3 Battery and Charging Review:

The iQoo Z3 comes packed with a 4,400 mAh (TYP) battery combined with 55W FlashCharge technology. To complement the fast-paced lifestyles of contemporary smartphone users, the device can charge up to 50 percent in around 15-18 minutes and users can fully charge (100 percent) their device in around 60 minutes.

iQoo z3 side

During our review, we could get up to one day of battery life on a single charge which is typcially like any other smartphone battery these days. That said, I expected at least 5,000mAh battery on iQoo Z3 especially when the display panel supports 120Hz refresh rate. It is probably one of the complaint I have about this smartphone when it comes to battery.

iQoo Z3 Review Verdict: Should you buy?

In our opinion, the IQoo Z3 5G is an overall good package with a decent set of cameras, good performance, and a 120Hz screen. As we all know, its biggest highlight is 5G with all-new Qualcomm Snapdragon 768 5G SoC. I feel, this might be a major selling point for those who are planning to buy a powerful device under Rs 20,000, which is also future ready. Apart from basics, the smartphone almost ticks all the boxes to be a good alternative to OnePlus Nord CE. That said, I have one little concern about the current brand value of iQoo as oppose to OnePlus. Also after sales services and support is one thing to be looked at.


performanceQualcomm Snapdragon 768G
display6.58 inches (16.71 cm)
storage128 GB
camera64 MP + 8 MP + 2 MP
battery4400 mAh
price in_india17990 INR
ram6 GB
Web Title iqoo z3 review
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