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vivo Y12 and vivo Y17 – worker's phones
4.4Overall Score
Name: vivo Y12 and vivo Y17
Price (RRP): $249/329
Manufacturer: vivo

Forgive me for calling the vivo Y12 and vivo Y17 worker’s phones – but that is what they are. For want of a better comparison – they are the base model Hyundai.

And that is not disparaging in any way – good, solid reliable, and perhaps a tad dull describes the Hyundai and equally the vivo Y12 and vivo Y17.

I don’t want to go into the vivo Y12 and vivo Y17 heritage apart to say that vivo is part of the BBK group that owns OPPO, realme and OnePlus. You can read more here but suffice to say that the group is making significant inroads due to, as Donald Trump famously put it, ”My way, or the Huawei”.

vivo Y12 and vivo Y17

We are doing a review of these two as a pair because they are very similar and priced with different options to meet the $249/329 price points – a mere $80 difference. Not that their bigger brother the vivo S1 at $399 is all that more costly either.

In fact, we have put a comparison table at the end and what it shows it a good, better, best situation – optioning the Hyundai up with a bit more horsepower or a fancy screen.

Australian website here

Two things stand out – triple 13MP rear camera and 5000mAh battery.

The rear camera is the same – good quality – certainly a step above social media quality that you expect at this price. The Y17 has a slight post-processing edge due to a slightly faster processor and more ram.

Screen 1544 x 720

Both are identical and are very good for the price. Here we don’t measure nits, brightness, colour gamut – you rate it subjectively, and I think it is great.

Both have fingerprint sensors on the rear, and 2D face unlock. The latter is reliable but slow in daylight.


  • Y12 – MT6762  3GB LPDDR3-933Mhz/64GB eMMC/microSD (47GB free)
  • Y17 – MT6765  4GB LPDDR3-933Mhz/128GB eMMC/microSD (103GB free)

CPU throttling

Neither had any indication of throttling. But it became obvious that the Y17 has more horsepower – 101,935GIPs to Y12 at 81,119GIPs. Again, use the car analogy – slightly bigger engine.

Geekbench 5 (single/multi-core)

Y12 158/814
Y17 167/1013

Neither is a powerhouse or gaming SoC and compare to the entry-level Qualcomm SD4XX or SD6XX series. Instead, they focus on camera post-processing, have EIS, depth of field algorithms (but the smartphones have depth cameras as well) and support face unlock. They encode H.264 and decode up to H.265.

RAM and storage are slower to meet the price point.

Summary: Fine for everyday use as a phone and camera.

Battery – 5000mAh

Over two weeks we charged and flogged these, and they still had battery life to burn.