This is how the pop-up selfie camera works on the Vivo NEX
Vivo may not be that well-known here in the U.S., but on June 12, the company unveiled what's easily one of the most interesting phones we've seen in 2018. The Vivo NEX is the closest we've gotten so far to a truly "bezel-less" smartphone, and to achieve this, Vivo did something awfully unique with the front-facing camera.
Instead of slapping it on the front above the screen or putting it in a notch, Vivo hides it inside the NEX's body. When you want to use it, the lens physically pops out from the top. When you're done taking selfies, the camera retracts once more and is completely hidden.
It's great party trick, but what's this process actually look like from inside the phone? IHS Tech Intelligence on Twitter recently shared a GIF of what goes on, and as you can see below, it's pretty damn cool.
All those moving parts might look like something waiting to break at a moment's notice, but as Vivo explained when the NEX was announced, the system that it's using is rated to move the front-facing camera up to 50,000 times and lift up to 500-grams of weight.
The NEX is the first phone to implement something along these lines, and it's a feature I hope we see in more products down the road. It may not be the perfect solution to creating a bezel-free phone, but at least in my opinion, it's the best one we've had yet.
Vivo NEX hands-on preview: One step closer to a bezel-less future
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Joe Maring was a Senior Editor for Android Central between 2017 and 2021. You can reach him on Twitter at @JoeMaring1.