Huawei’s sub-brand Honor was dishing out some great phones lately. The Honor 8 Guru (Review) which started earlier this season went head-to-head with all the OnePlus 5 (Review) stealing its thunder to some degree. We had been impressed with all the specs and features it offered for the price. With the industry slowly pivoting towards 18:9 displays, Honor has made this movement in the kind of the Honor 9i. The display isn’t the only interesting thing about this brand new phone. While the specifications appear great on paper, do they translate into a fantastic real-world experience? We have got the answer.
Honor 9i design
If you were enticed by phones with enormous displays and thin bezels, the Honor 9i will pique your interest. It packs a massive 5.9-inch display with slim boundaries all around. Do not allow the display size set you off, since the 18:9 aspect ratio implies that the phone overall is approximately the exact same size as most present 5.5-inch phones. The big display means that the metallic earpiece, detectors, and front cameras are pushed right to the top border. The fingerprint scanner is in the back and you receive a clean entrance face.
Pick the phone up, and the curved sides and borders feel comfortable in your hand. The Honor 9i feels solid too, due to its alloy unibody. While the black finish on the review unit looks magnificent, it is a fingerprint magnet. The phone is also a little slippery if you’re not careful when holding it. The double camera module onto the back protrudes by a few millimeters but includes a metallic rim surrounding it, which ought to help prevent scratches. We discovered that we had to extend our fingers a little to get to the fingerprint scanner and that a slightly lower positioning could have been improved.
The Honor 9i includes a Micro-USB interface for charging and data moves, with a 3.5millimeter headphone jack and the loudspeaker on either side.
The first thing to catch your attention about the Honor 9i will be its big display. Viewing angles are great but we’d have liked a little more vividness in the colors. It is possible to alter the color temperature but we could not find a means to improve contrast. The display is bright enough indoors however you might battle with it when outdoors. There is absolutely no mention of any type of protective glass, but you receive a plastic scrape prevention film pre-installed.
Honor has used double camera setups on both sides. The primary back and front cameras possess 16-megapixel camera along with 13-megapixel detectors respectively, and both are paired with 2-megapixel secondary detectors which are utilized to catch depth information and also to allow portrait style. You obtain a single LED flash in the back along with a gentle selfie flash on the front.
This is a dual-SIM device with just two Nano-SIM slots, but you can swap the next SIM to get a microSD card of up to 128GB. Honor has also packaged in a 3340mAh battery which is a little bigger than ordinary.
Honor has employed its tried and tested custom interface named EMUI on the Honor 9i. Huawei utilizes its own visual style, and it has rearranged several options in the Settings program, but it will not take much time to become accustomed to. There are gestures which simplify taking screenshots and launching programs. Honor calls for these knuckle gestures, and they operate by knocking on the monitor. It is possible to double-knock to have a screenshot or perform a two-knuckle tap to begin display recording. In addition you have the option to launch programs and input split-screen manner by tracing letters onto the monitor. We discovered a number of them quite useful during our review period.
Even the FullView display isn’t very convenient for one-handed usage, and also the top corners are difficult to reach. Honor has also integrated a single-hand manner that shrinks the display down to one corner of this display. You will need to swipe throughout the navigation buttons to empower it. One other issue with all the 18:9 display is that most of programs are not prepared for it however. While you may run these programs with a black bar in the bottom, Honor also gives you the option to scale them to fit the display. You obtain a simple instant to allow this or you are able to certainly do it in the display settings.
The Honor 9i includes a few custom programs including HiCare – a service support program; HiGame – a gaming program store; and Hi Honor and Honor Community which are Internet shortcuts. EMUI provides support for topics which gives you the ability to alter the appearance of the device.
The performance of the Honor 9i is in precisely the exact same range as that of different devices at this price point. The phone doesn’t heat up when running day-to-day tasks however, it will get warm after gaming for a while. We could not find a way to conduct the match letterboxed to 16:9 and needed to get used to it.
We also detected a higher speed of battery drain when gaming so that you might want to keep your eye on the fee level. Whenever you aren’t running processor-intensive jobs the phone handles power quite nicely. In our HD video loop evaluation, the phone lasted for 2 hours and 54 minutes which isn’t good compared to other smartphones. It’s possible to use the power saver mode which aggressively melts down background processes and cuts off background syncing, however there is not any support for rapid charging, which is disappointing.
The biggest feature for your Honor 9i is its own cameras. Launch the camera program and you receive a simple interface with all the photo/ video selector on one side and quick toggles on the opposite. You get controls to your flash, aperture style, moving picture style, and portrait style. Moving pictures are similar to live photos on iOS, in which a brief clip is recorded together with a still frame. You are able to swipe right in the default display to get the different shooting modes. Aside from HDR, panorama, and video, you receive professional manners for the two photos and videos, slow-mo, filters, effects and a couple of others. In addition you have the option to obtain more ways if you wish to.
The default auto mode for photos is great enough and sets up the cameras nicely. The 16-megapixel primary back camera captures adequate quantity of detail in landscapes and macros. The secondary 2-megapixel camera will help distinguish the topic and background to some degree in portrait along with wide aperture manners, however it is largely software doing the blurring which is evident in a couple of shots. Selfies possess the bokeh impact also, and we discovered that the front cameras did a slightly better job in contrast to the back ones. You get beautification style too, which smoothens skin.
Low-light camera performance is typical. The Honor 9i handles to maintain noise under control but oversharpens photos causing them to miss out on detail. Low-light selfies turn out better thanks to its diffused selfie flash. The Honor 9i can capture video at 1080p, both in front and in the back. You might even utilize beautification when recording video with the front camera, but then the output is restricted to 720p.
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We can observe that producers are moving towards the 18:9 aspect ratio and this attribute isn’t restricted to expensive flagships anymore. With the Honor 9i, buyers have one more option to get a cheap yet futuristic-looking phone.
The Honor 9i strikes a balance between features and cost. You obtain a fingerprint scanner which has been missing on the LG Q6 (Review) along with a 1080p display in contrast to the 720p panel to your Vivo V7+ (Review). The chip is good enough for many people’s daily grinds, as well as the software is simple to use. But this phone still had a couple of improvements when it comes to the cameras and battery life performance.
If you prioritise appears over performance afterward the Honor 9i does offer more bang for the dollar compared to other smartphones. On the flip side, if you would like a stable all-rounder instead, the Xiaomi Mi A1 (Review) along with the Moto G5S Plus (Review) are great alternatives.