So far, the front-facing camera has been all about megapixels and special effects – more megapixels, special stickers, beauty effects and filters of all sorts. The Vivo NEX, however, revolutionizes the whole selfie process by doing something far more fundamental: changing the functioning of the selfie camera. At a time when most players are just trying to talk about high megapixel counts and all sorts of effects (including AI), Vivo has stuck to doing something far more basic – coming out with a selfie camera that just works with minimum fuss and stays out of sight unless needed. The importance of the camera being tucked away unless needed is extremely important, as it meets not just a functional need but also a design aesthetic. When you look at the display of the NEX, you see the display, not a camera, an earpiece and navigation buttons and/or fingerprint scanners. It is the picture or text you want to see, with no obstructions. The same philosophy is extended to the selfie camera. At 8.0-megapixels, it might not seem to boast as many megapixels as others but comes with a large f/2.0 aperture and as our review revealed, reproduces colors accurately and captures a lot of detail. There are bells and whistles too – there is a beauty mode, panorama, videos and a stack of AR stickers too. But what REALLY makes the camera special is that it stays out of sight until needed. And when needed, it slides out. You would not even know it existed if you did not see it moving out. It does so silently on a highly sophisticated micro-stepping motor, and yet is out in little more than an instant. Contrary to fears in some quarters, it is very solidly built too – it does not wobble one bit and you would need to press hard to push it back physically (why would you need to, though – the camera pops up only when you get into selfie mode). It is a delectable, incredibly elegant solution. And it works across all apps – just hit the front-facing camera icon, and you will see the selfie module sliding out. More importantly, it slides right back not just when you return to a normal camera view but also if you switch to another application. It is a classic example of how a feature should work – always present but appearing only when really needed.

The fact that the selfie camera pops up only when you are in selfie mode also makes the device stalker proof. If you see a stranger pointing a Vivo NEX at you and no selfie camera jutting out from the top, you can be sure they are shooting without permission – the “I am just taking a selfie” excuse does not work. The selfie camera on the Vivo NEX revolutionizes selfies as we know them. By using a camera that appears only when you need to use it. And when it does come up, it does not come up with a whole array of sensors or other cameras (as in some others) but just pops up to take your selfie. And then retreats. Elegantly. Efficiently. It just works.