Looking at the world’s top phone manufacturers, the list is dominated by senior brands that have a decades-long history in the telecommunications and electronics industry.

For instance, Apple was founded in 1976, while Samsung has been in business since 1938. Long years in the industry are definitely important to establish the brand in order to lead the market. 

That’s why it’s very refreshing to see a 10-year old electronics company up there with the big brands. Vivo was only founded in 2009 but has already constantly ranked in the top 5 smartphone manufacturers worldwide. Despite being relatively new to the field, Vivo is already a household name for its high-quality mid-range smartphones.

Data from Counterpoint Research

However, there are still a lot of things that we don’t know about this young Chinese brand. Here are 7 things that you may haven’t heard about Vivo, including its massive advertising stints.

Vivo shares the same parent company with close rival OPPO. 

Vivo has been constantly head-to-head with another Chinese brand OPPO as the fifth-largest smartphone manufacturer since 2016. The two brands are frequently compared with one another, both of them sporting sleek displays and top-notch cameras with every release. But while Vivo and OPPO are rivals in many ways, they are actually sister companies under one parent company


BBK Electronics is the Chinese conglomerate behind popular brands like Vivo, OPPO, OnePlus, and Realme. Founded in 1995, BBK envisioned to spring out companies under three pillars: communications, audiovisuals, and education electronics. And in 2009, Vivo was founded to become BBK’s stronghold of the communications sector. 


Spearheading the communications segment, Vivo focused on delivering high-quality audio since its very first smartphones. In 2012, Vivo was the first brand that inserted a dedicated Hi-Fi audio chip into a smartphone. And that was just the start of Vivo’s long list of trendsetting and innovation. 

Vivo was the first company to show an elevating front camera and in-display fingerprint scanner.

Of the many things that Vivo pioneered, one of the most noteworthy is the world’s first elevating front camera. In 2018, Vivo’s concept phone, the APEX, debuted the small, periscopic camera that seamlessly pops up in selfie mode and automatically retracts after exiting. Recent phones like the Vivo V17 Pro takes this innovation even further by offering a 32MP elevating front camera. With this stylish new camera, blurry selfies are a thing of the past. 


Another thing that the Vivo APEX introduced is its half-screen, in-display fingerprint scanning technology. There’s no need for a specific home button to tap because the whole bottom half of the screen can scan your fingerprint anywhere you touch. 

Both of these innovations come with Vivo’s design of the bezel-less, full-screen smartphone of the future. By ditching the notches meant for the front camera and the home button, Vivo is able to maximize the screen size to almost 98% screen-to-body ratio for a more immersive experience. With powerful innovations like these, we need to keep an eye out for Vivo as they change the game in designing the phones of the future. 

Vivo holds the Guinness World Record for the thinnest smartphone. 

Much earlier than the technological advancements of its recent flagship phones, Vivo has already been gaining recognition for its design achievements since its younger years. One of which is its thin smartphone designs, which earned the brand a Guinness World Record. 


With the release of the Vivo X5 Max in 2014, the razor-sharp phone broke the World Record for the thinnest smartphone, previously held by the OPPO R5. Measuring at just 4.75 mm, the X5 Max seems to be an impossible design, but it does not suffer from loss of functionality. It still managed to carry a 13MP rear camera and a 3.5mm headphone jack. Even after 5 years of release, only a  few come close to the efficiently slim design of the Vivo X5 Max. 

Vivo has its very own official Pantone color. 

If you’re a hardcore Vivo fan, you would have caught its subtle but effective rebranding last 2019. Vivo’s new visual identity redesigned the logo to spell out the brand name with simplified lines and sharper angles to reflect the brand’s forward-looking spirit. 


The rebranding also brought a new bespoke blue for Vivo, known as Pantone 2386, which was a more saturated and soothing shade of blue. The previous color was the Pantone 2925C, a brighter aquamarine blue. This change was the result of Vivo’s study of consumers’ visual habits to show which color shades do they respond to more on their displays. The Pantone 2386 blue is also the perfect color to express Vivo’s creative and youthful character.

Vivo goes big on advertising, like sponsoring the FIFA World Cup and appearing in Captain America: Civil War.

There’s a reason why Vivo has risen from a small name to its current global popularity, and that’s because of its multimillion-dollar advertising ventures. One of its most successful strategies of expanding to the worldwide market is its product placements in Hollywood blockbuster films.


The Vivo V3 and V3 Max were both used by Captain America and Iron Man in Captain America: Civil War. Other Vivo phones also had appearances in The Martian and Mission Impossible 5. 


Vivo also has its eyes on big, crowd-bringing sports leagues and events. Vivo was able to bag a six-year deal to be the exclusive smartphone sponsor for the FIFA World Cup, only the biggest sporting event in the whole world. That means more than 3.2 billion people saw Vivo’s name during the 2018 World Cup, and possibly more on 2022. 

Vivo is a major sponsor of the NBA in China and the Philippines. 

Speaking of big sports events, Vivo has secured a multi-year partnership with NBA in the Philippines and China, two of the league’s biggest markets outside of the US. This includes Vivo’s active participation in different NBA events, like the NBA China Games, the NBA Playoffs Bracket Challenge, and NBA Fan Day. In fact, Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry is an official endorser of Vivo here in the Philippines.


However, in 2019 Vivo has since severed its ties with sponsoring NBA in China after a tweet from an NBA executive supporting the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, which had angered many in China.  

iQOO is Vivo’s sub-brand for gaming smartphones

In the worldwide race for 5G connectivity, many have their eyes toward China to lead the pack. And if we take a closer look, Vivo is dominating the Chinese 5G market, with more than 50% market share, far above Samsung’s 29%. One key reason is Vivo’s new sub-brand called iQOO, dedicated to gaming for the mid-range market. 


Only launched in 2019, iQOO was founded to focus on high performance and 5G connectivity, perfect for the new generation of gaming phones. The iQOO 3, for example, was one of the first brands to carry the Snapdragon 865 processor, made more stylish with a 1080p OLED display and a 4,400mAh battery. 

Relatively new, there’s still a lot we don’t know about iQOO, but we should definitely pay attention to the 5G innovation and gaming aspect as we’re sure to see from this Vivo sub-brand. 

Do you have a Vivo phone? What other interesting facts do you know about the Vivo brand? Share us your thoughts in the comments below.

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