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Honor X9b Review: The Hummer Of Smartphones

Here’s our full review of the Honor X9b, the latest lower mid-range handset from Honor in India.


  • Design & Build Quality
  • Display
  • Battery Backup
  • Performance in daily use


  • Poor haptics
  • Tinny speaker
  • Below average camera performance
  • Software still needs some tweaks
  • Charging time is slower than competitors

Honor has just come up with a new smartphone in India called the Honor X9b. Positioned in the mid-range segment for Rs 25,999, the Honor X9b aims to offer a blend of durable build quality, premium looks, and a smooth experience that’s unmatchable by its competitors. After our initial impressions of the device, we put the Honor X9b to the test and found out whether it could stand strong against its competition or not.

Design & Display

The Honor X9b, as we previously mentioned in our first impressions, is built solidly and doesn’t compromise on design in any aspect. It feels as premium as a smartphone can in this segment. It is slim and durable, and the design is unique in some ways. We have seen smartphones in the past with a circular camera module at the center of the rear panel, but this one stands out.

Honor x9b cameras

With Honor X9b, the treatment given to the camera module is different, with two golden rings in the black shade and the whole module being gold in the orange shade. The device also doesn’t feel heavy in the hand at all. Despite being light and slim, Honor packed the device with a 5800mAh cell, which is very impressive.

There’s a single speaker at the bottom, which is a bummer, as it could have been a stereo setup. Moreover, the speaker’s sound quality is strictly average as it has a lot of echo with no bass at all. In fact, the stereo speakers on the Moto G24 Power (which cost Rs 8,999) we tested a couple of weeks ago had better quality and was louder. The on the Honor X9b are decent, similar to the Honor 90.

As for the display, this is what Honor boasts about the most amongst the other features of the handset. This is a 6.78-inch panel, which is actually one of the best we have seen in this price range. It gets bright enough outdoors while also reproducing contrasty images. The colours pop while the smoothness with 120Hz is appreciable. The in-display fingerprint sensor works without any issues as such. It would have been better if it was placed a little higher for comfortable accessibility, but you’d get used to it quickly.

Honor X9b display First imoression

Viewing angles also look impressive, and Honor claims that this is an anti-drop display with SGS 5-star Whole-device Drop Resistance Certification. Of course, we had to put it to the test, and Honor X9b passed with flying colours. Even when dropping it on the screen, it didn’t get a single scratch, let alone any cracks. The curves on the sides can sometimes be a little bothersome with reflections as the curvature is slightly higher but most of the time, it looks perfectly fine.

Performance & Software

With the Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 at the helm of the smartphone, you cannot expect the Honor X9b to be the best at everything. However, it is quite impressive with daily usage scenarios, such as scrolling through social media, calling, browsing the web, etc. We didn’t notice any lags or the device getting hot during any circumstances. However, if you try to game heavily on it, it’ll start to slow down soon enough.

When we tested the Honor 90, we had a few complaints with the software where Magic OS 7.1 didn’t implement some of the basic notification features. Unfortunately, the same is the case with Magic OS 7.2 as well. It still doesn’t offer the ability to hide notification content on the lock screen.

However, the super aggressive battery management has been corrected, which earlier prevented the device from sending timely notifications from apps. Volume controls are still a mess, where you have to tap on the settings icon below the bar to adjust separate volumes for media, calls, etc. There’s not a lot of bloatware apart from Honor’s own apps, Netflix, WPS Office and Booking.com. These apps can all be uninstalled, except for Honor’s apps, which can be disabled.

The user interface also seems to have a lot of iOS-inspired elements, such as the quick settings style, volume bar, etc. The animations are very well handled, and as a fact, they look similar to iOS, too. Animations in Magic OS 7.2 are non-linear, along with being fluid.

But once again, the device disappoints in a couple of more aspects, such as no monet theming system, which can grab the colours from your wallpaper and apply them to the system elements accordingly. It tried to make up for it by providing customisation options such as custom icons, a number of Always-on display styles, etc. Also, the device runs on Android 13 and not 14, compared to the competitors, who ship their devices with Android 14 out of the box.

Security-wise, it comes with the January 2024 security patch. The connectivity performance of the handset also remains optimum.

Read More: Honor Choice Earbuds X5 Review

Battery backup

The Honor X9b packs a 5800mAh battery with 35W fast wired charging. The handset doesn’t ship with a charger in the box but offers a USB-A to USB-C cable. Thanks to its large battery capacity and decent optimisation, the Honor X9b can easily last for a day or even two, depending on your usage. During my use, I had around 35% left at the end of the day with more than 6 hours of screen-on time, which is quite impressive. I could even get it close to the 2-day mark with moderate use.

The charging time is decent but not the best, as it takes 1.5 hours from 10 to 100%. We charged the device with a 65W GaN charger, which could charge the device at full 35W speeds.


The Honor X9b gets a triple camera system, including a 108MP f/1.75 primary lens, a 5MP ultra-wide f/2.2 sensor and a 2MP f/2.4 macro camera. The device is equipped with a 16MP f/2.45 selfie camera on the front.

The primary camera shoots photos that have an ample amount of detailing with sharpness and exposure levels on point. Even when you zoom in, you can notice the smaller details inside a photo. The colours, however, are towards the natural side and look a little faded in some areas.

The ultra-wide angle shots were a total disappointment. The colour shift over shots from the primary sensor was considerably high, with oversharpening, poor dynamic range and low detailing. The exposure levels were also not under control, and the overall look of the photo was sub-par when compared with the competition.

Selfies looked decent in terms of sharpness and detailing, but if you are in front of a bright background, it would often blow it out. Once again, the colours looked quite faded.

Night shots had decent colours, but the detailing and sharpness were completely off, even with on. Coming to photos shot in artificial lighting, the colours were again different from natural.

As for low light photos, these shots are barely usable. These photos are noisy and are too soft. Once again, the device struggles to handle colours while the shutter lag also increases in such lighting conditions.

Honor X9b

Honor X9b
  • ChipsetSnapdragon 6 Gen 1
  • RAM (GB)8
  • Storage256
  • Display6.78-inch, 1200 x 2652 pixels
  • Front Camera16MP
  • Primary Camera108MP + 5MP + 2MP
  • Battery5800mAh
  • Operating SystemAndroid 13


Design & Build Quality
Software & Performance
Battery Backup


The Honor X9b is comparable to the Hummer in the automotive world. It’s built solid for rough use, lasts long and has the premium looks but it’s not the all-rounder. Similar to the Hummer, it’s not the best in its class in terms of performance or for cameras as you get better options in the same price range.

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The Honor X9b is comparable to the Hummer in the automotive world. It’s built solid for rough use, lasts long and has the premium looks but it’s not the all-rounder. Similar to the Hummer, it’s not the best in its class in terms of performance or for cameras as you get better options in the same price range.Honor X9b Review: The Hummer Of Smartphones