OPPO F7 Youth First Impressions – A Capable and Affordable Selfie Shooter

Sometimes the budget version of a phone maker’s “flagship” is toned down in specs and performance to pull down the price. But it’s a good thing the , the budget-friendly sibling of OPPO’s current front-liner selfie phone, the F7, doesn’t really feel “toned down” at all. Here are our first impressions.

Note that our loaner unit did not come with a box. The OPPO F7 Youth was launched last May 25.

OPPO F7 Youth Specs

6-inch FHD+ LTPS IPS 2160 x 1080 resolution (at 402 ppi)
– with 2.5D curved glass, Corning Gorilla Glass 5
2.0GHz 64-bit Helio P60 octa-core processor
– with dual-core A.I.
Mali-G72 MP3 GPU | 4GB RAM
64GB storage, up to 256GB via dedicated microSD slot
Rear Camera: 13MP F2.2 with AF and LED flash
Selfie Camera: 8MP F2.2 with A.I. Beauty Recognition 2.0, on-screen flash
3,410mAh Battery | Dual Nano SIM
Android 8.1 Oreo with ColorsOS 5.0
WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, 3G, 4G 700MHz LTE w/ VoLTE, Bluetooth 4.2, A2DP, LE, OTG, GPS, A-GPS
Accelerometer, light, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, sound, magnetic
Facial recognition (No Fingerprint Sensor), Dirac HD audio, dual mic
Comes in diamond black, solar red
156 x 75.3 x 7.8 mm | 158 g
PHP 13,990 | or via Home Credit or Shopee

First Impressions

Good build quality and design. While it looks a lot like its front-liner sibling, the OPPO F7, the F7 Youth doesn’t have a notch (one of the ways you can tell the two apart).

That diamond or prism patterned reflective back is one of the distinguishing looks of the F7 Youth. So if you’re going to buy a cover, maybe go for a transparent one, so that the prism look is retained.

Display is one of the better ones on a selfie-focused smartphone around. The full HD+ (1080×2160) resolution screen with an 18:9 aspect ratio is vivid, punchy-colored, and has enough contrast even under harsh noon sunlight. Also, it can’t hurt that that display is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 5.

That good display plus the loud sound (and being USB OTG-ready) make for a good video marathon device.

Loud speaker – that bottom grille is good for sharing videos. It can get loud.

The intuitive camera app make for easy picture-taking.

Good rear camera image quality for most lighting conditions.

Medium to low light, no flash.

Changing light conditions (there were moving spot lights).

Macro under heavy yellow lighting.

Great selfies even in challenging lighting conditions. As you can see in the photos, the output is great. And surprisingly, the on-screen flash is enough for most lighting scenes, enough to illluminate your face. (Sadly, we were not able to record videos.)

OPPO F7 Youth selfie, no on-screen flash used. Still pretty good.

Jane Wan, OPPO Philipines Brand Marketing Director, and Irwin Allen Rivera, Owner and Content Lead at SwirlingOverCoffee.com, take a selfie with AR Stickers.

Under very harsh noon time sunlight.

A very strong spotlight was hitting us from one side, but the resulting image was still good.

One of the most to use and cleanest implementations of AR stickers on an Android smartphone today. As you can see in the sample selfies photos.

Triple Slots really help. Many of us rely on two SIMs to keep us connected, and having dedicated slots are great (unlike with hybrid sual SIMs that can only take in either 2 SIMs or 1 SIM plus a micro SD card).

Fast face unlock. And this is becoming so standard these days that when a midrange budget phone has a slow one, you really notice it. Good thing the F7 Youth doesn’t have that problem.

Hardly any lag at all. And this is not surprising, given that the F7 Youth inherits the F7’s Helio P60 octa-core processor, which is 80% faster that same-priced range smartphones.

Battery life is great. On medium to light usage, I’m getting 11 hours of use. Not the most scientific test, of course, as we don’t all have the same usage habits (or usage intensity). Sadly, we were not able to test graphic-heavy games on the F7 Youth, some that a full review should cover. (This is merely a first look.)

Good haptic feedback when typing on the onscreen keyboard for messages and chat apps. This is maybe subjective and not everyone minds the level of haptic vibration and how comfortable it feels, but the F7 Youth has is good. At least to us.

Impressive price. The F7 Youth is P4,000 lower than the OPPO F7, and yet the F7 Youth still has the powerful 2.0GHz 64-bit Helio P60 octa-core processor, dual-core A.I. chips, and Mali-G72 MP3 GPU (which the F7 has), 4GB RAM, 64GB expandable storage, and 3,400mAh battery.

No Type C port. There’s still an “old” micro USB port for both charging and for plugging in non-Type-C USB OTG flash drives. On the plus side, that means any old charger will work, and you don’t have to buy Type C fladh drivers or cables.

No fingerprint sensor on the front or the back. Just like the LG Q6 (which is officially old tech as of this post), the F7 Youth does away with the fingerprint sensor and relies on face unlock and old-fashioned swipe/PIN pattern to unlock the phone. But on balance, because of the specs of the F7 Youth (which makes it one of the most affordable gaming smartphones right now), we don’t mind losing the fingerprint sensor.

No dual cameras anywhere. OPPO has abandoned the dual cameras for now, a feature found in their previous phones (like the F3 and F3 Plus). But again, the selfies and rear camera shots are great, even if the bokeh effect is only adequate.

The Wrap UP

The OPPO F7 Youth, the more affordable sibling of the F7, is a really promising camera, video marathon, and gaming phone. We don’t feel that what it lacks (fingerprint sensor, dual cameras) detract from the overall experience. The OPPO F7 Youth sells for P13,990 or you can get it at Shopee or in installments at Home Credit.

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Irwin Allen Rivera loves his wife's cooking so much he's now twice the man he used to be. His English essay won a Don Carlos Palanca Memorial Award for Literature in 2012. His philosophical-horror story appeared in Philippine Speculative Fiction 8 (2013). He was managing editor and lead writer of Sites and Symbols 2 (2005), a coffee-table book about buildings in UP Diliman - his alma mater (BA Philosophy; MA Creative Writing continuing). He worked at the UP Diliman Information Office before shifting to web content writing. His sudden fiction, "Notwithstanding Pigs," initially a Friendster testimonial, appeared in Philippines Graphic (2006) and in Very Short Stories for Harried Readers (2007). He used to write for www.technoodling.net.