Sprint Vital Review
As we’ve seen with previous ZTE devices on Sprint, the Vital runs a nearly stock version of Android. The Vital has the 4.1.2 variety of Jelly Bean, so it is current but not completely up to date. Pre-loaded apps are light and mostly un-installable, but more of the core apps are replaced this time around, such as the Browser, Calculator and Camera among others. As in the past ZTE has reworked the lock screen to allow unlocking into the camera or to toggle vibrate mode, but instead of sliding the targets you have to hold them. The Vital supports SprintID as well in case you feel the urge to download an ID pack, but we have a feeling you’ll resist.
Processor and Memory
The Vital runs smoothly thanks in large part to the dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 Plus processor, the same MSM8960 found in the Flash and still pared with 1GB of RAM. It has 8GB of internal memory, expandable via microSD. Benchmarks backed up the smooth performance, comparing favorably to similar spec’d devices though falling well short of recent processors with more memory.
|Quadrant Standard||AnTuTu||GLBenchmark 2.5 (Egypt HD)||Vellamo
(HTML5 / Metal)
|Sprint Vital||6048||11446||2437||2116 / 600|
|HTC One||12481||23308||3551 / 31 fps||2395 / 781|
|Samsung Galaxy S4||12078||24701||4437 / 39 fps||1702/704|
Connectivity and Browser
The ZTE Vital is a 4G LTE device with support for all of Sprint’s networks and bands, including the 800MHz band that will be deployed with the iDEN network shutdown. Other radios include Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi b/g/n, GPS, NFC and DLNA.
As mentioned the stock browser looks to be a reworked version of the stock Android browser, and performance was quite smooth and snappy. Still, we prefer using Chrome which is pre-loaded in part because of the great sync features it offers.
The camera has been slightly bumped from 12.6MP on the Flash to 13 on the Vital. Unfortunately we never got a Flash to test so we can’t compare, but the Vital performed respectably. Autofocus time as well as shutter speed was both quite quick, though not on par with something like the HTC One. On device and at typical sharing resolutions images displayed realistic colors and lighting, though there is noticeable grain in our indoor samples. As you blow images up to full resolution details become muddled and the grain gets worse as depth increases, even with strong natural light. The 1080p viedos produced similar results; suitable for sharing but with weaknesses if you’re looking.
Sprint Vital Sample Images
ZTE has included its own multimedia players, but as with the browser we prefer the included Google options.
1. g2a5b0e (Posts: 2567; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)
Brian, what you call personality, I call ugly. I don't think I've ever seen a phone with an uglier back in my life. The color is so-so, but that hump is just nasty.
4. TheRequiem (Posts: 160; Member since: 23 Mar 2012)
Nonsense, what is wrong with the back? it's go a high end camera lense mechanism... google Nokia EOS
5. g2a5b0e (Posts: 2567; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)
You don't have to agree. It's called an opinion. I think it's ugly. Deal with it.
8. jaustin (Posts: 2; Member since: 21 Aug 2013)
g2a5b0e, if it's just a purely personal opinion -- vs. an objective comment -- what's the point of SHARING it?! In case you haven't noticed, this isn't a site where people can mull over what to buy YOU for Christmas!
3. TheRequiem (Posts: 160; Member since: 23 Mar 2012)
This is actually a great phone for the price.
6. Doakie (Posts: 1305; Member since: 06 May 2009)
I just stopped by Sprint specifically to check out this phone and I'm amazed... I was holding my HTC One in my left had and a ZTE Vital in my right had and I really liked the Vital A LOT! I'm kind of ashamed with how much I like it. I noticed the signal quality was a little better than my One. My One hovered around -98 dB while the Vital sat around -90 dB. That could make a big difference in spotty coverage areas. If I could find a used Vital for $200 and I could sell my One for $400 I'd totally pocket the $200 and rock a Vital. But it's not worth the step down in screen resolution and processor power for less than $200.....
7. Doakie (Posts: 1305; Member since: 06 May 2009)
I realize I'm replying to myself but... "with support for all of Sprint’s networks and bands, including the 800MHz band that will be deployed with the iDEN network shutdown." Wow. That really makes this phone stand out above the previous gen of high end phones like the EVO 4G LTE because once Sprint rolls out LTE at 800 MHz they'll finally have really good building penetration vs the current 1900 MHz. Sort of want!
9. jaustin (Posts: 2; Member since: 21 Aug 2013)
Really, though, just how much of a "step down" is the Vital in screen resolution and processor power?
|Display||5.0 inches, 720 x 1280 pixels (294 ppi) IPS LCD|
Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Plus MSM8960, Dual core, 1500 MHz, Krait processor
1024 MB RAM
|Size||5.59 x 2.81 x 0.39 inches|
(142 x 71 x 10 mm)
5.43 oz (154 g)
|Battery||2500 mAh, 15 hours talk time|