Staying true to its roots, BLU’s latest offering just in time for the holidays is a budget-friendly option that boasts many of the trends in smartphones nowadays. With a price tag of $149.99 normally (currently $129.99 on Amazon as of this writing), the BLU VIVO XL4 might be for users who have an extremely limited budget, but still crave all of those trendy features.

Even though it’s flaunting a metal body, it doesn’t embody the same sturdy feel we find in other metal cladded smartphones. You could say that it has a “cheap” feel to it, especially when smudges seem to remain on the surface even after a good wipe down. Sure, we do appreciate the metal construction, but it lacks the substantial feel we get from other devices. Of course, the price point may have something to do with the inferior metal used here.

Beyond that, the BLU VIVO XL4 manages to bring many premium features we get in high-end smartphones. For example, it features a 6.2-inch 720 x 1520 edge-to-edge LCD display (notch included), a rear planted fingerprint sensor, and even a dual-camera system that breaks down to a 13MP and 2MP combo for portrait effects. Supplementing all of this, we also get a 4000 mAh battery, an octa-core Mediatek Helio P22 processor, 3GB of RAM, and a microSD card slot.

Out of the box, it seems to perform decently enough running some apps, but then again, we’re not that confident about it being a gaming-ready smartphone. For the trivial stuff, sure, it’ll suffice in playing those games, but don’t bet on it handling top-caliber titles. It’s running BLU’s skin on top of Android 8.1 Oreo, something that we hope will get treated to software updates to bring it up to Android Pie. BLU’s track record hasn’t been the best in this department, but they did pledge to bring another recent device, the BLU VIV XI+, up to Android Pie. However, there’s no mention if the VIVO XL4 will be given the same treatment at some point.

Regardless, it’s a budget smartphone for users who don’t want to spend a fortune on a device. Its $149.99 cost is certainly forgiving in comparison to the $1000+ priced smartphones that are in circulation, but just don’t expect this phone to reach the same level of performance as some of those notable devices in the space.

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