Huawei’s sub-brand Honor has added a new member to its portfolio with the introduction of Honor 8 Lite. The Lite version of the much-popular Honor 8 comes with a price tag of Rs 17,999 and has a lot to offer if we look at the specifications. But will it enough to make a long-lasting impact on the consumers?Let’s find out.
It surely gives a premium look…
At a time when the majority of the players in the smartphone industry are opting for a metal body, Honor has gone for a glass body, which surely stands out of the crowd. The phone gives a very premium feel and is also pretty slim with 7.6mm thickness and light weighing just 147 grams.Quickly going through the physical overview, the side bezels on this one are quite thin and the navigation buttons are on-screen. Just above the display, you will find the front-facing camera along with an earpiece and a bunch of usual sensors including the ambient-light sensor. On the right, you get the volume controls along with the power on/off button, while the left house a hybrid dual SIM slot. At the top, there is a headphone jack, while at the base you will get a micro-USB port flanked between two speaker grills of which only one act as your primary speaker while the other becomes your primary microphone.
Flipping the device to the back, we get the primary camera along with LED flash and just beneath it is where the fingerprint sensor is placed which can do a lot more than just unlocking your device. One can swipe up and down to close and notification panel, touch and hold to pick up calls, click photos, swipe left or right to scroll photos in full-screen mode. Besides, the fingerprint is quite fast to unlock the device.
Overall, the smartphone does feel premium in hands and is certainly lightweight and compact enough to use. On the downside of having a glass back, the phone is a fingerprint magnet and smudges game is pretty Strong with this one. The display on the front sometimes gets too much smudgy that one can feel it while using the smartphone and to be honest, it takes away that cream over the beautiful display which Honor 8 Lite packs. As a precaution, it is advisable to use a cover and Huawei does give a hardcover bundled with the device inside the box.
…and packs some interesting internals
When it comes to specifications, the smartphone has some interesting specs sheet to offer. To start with, the device features a 5.2 inch Full HD 2.5D curved glass display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. It is powered by Huawei’s in-house(2.1 GHz + 1.7 GHz) Octa-Core HiSilicon Kirin 655 processor, along with ARM Mali-T830 MP2 GPU. The smartphone comes with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage, which can be further expanded up to 128GB via microSD card.
The Honor 8 Lite runs on Android 7.0 Nougat operating system which is wrapped under EMUI 5.0 Lite. The device is juiced by with a 3000mAh Li-Polymer non-removable battery and support connectivity options including Dual SIM, 4G VoLTE, Wifi-802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth 4.1 and a microUSB port.
Has a decent camera performance…
On the camera front, the smartphone has 12-megapixel rear camera with LED flash coupled with 1.25 um Pixel Size Sensor, and PDAF. For the front, there is an 8-megapixel selfie camera with 77-degree wide angle lens, f/2.0 aperture.
The camera UI is pretty simple to use. If you swipe left you get different modes including Pro Photos, Video, Pro Video, HDR, light painting, and more. Talking about the performance of the camera, the device gives a good result under broad daylight as photo came out to be well-detailed and colours were true to its source. Photos clicked in the HDR mode came out to crisp and shutter speed was pretty fast as well. However, all was not good with this camera. When it comes to taking macro shots, the camera was not able to focus properly on the subject, which resulted in a blurry object and if you ask us, it kinds of spoils the mood.
Under low light conditions, the phone is able to take some good photos, but detailing goes for a toss and you will find graininess and noises in almost all the photos. The HDR mode during low light conditions fills some light, which is a good thing, but still, grains were quite visible. Another plus point, we have here is it handles glares quite effectively, which is a good thing.
Bearing that, just everything is right about it
During our testing period, we were quite happy with the performance of the smartphone. Starting with the display department, the 5.2-inch Full HD display offers a vibrant and punchy colours coupled with some good viewing angles. Outdoor visibility is good if not exceptional and we liked the fact that auto brightness was quick to adjust to the environment, though there were times when the auto brightness was a bit too harsh for our liking. All in all, the display on the Honor 8 Lite will not disappoint you.
Coming to software department, Honor 8 Lite runs on Android 7.0 Nougat with Huawei’s new EMUI 5.0 on top. The EMUI 5.0 is now lighter and faster as compared to previous versions. We liked the fact that the company has the option to choose between standard layout and an App drawer, which is a good move. Navigating between the apps and screens in a delight and it is quite smooth as well. One can also change the navigation keys according to their wish. The UI comes loaded with some India-centric feature including a Hindu Calendar, which showcases all the panchangs and dashas.
There is also some smart assistance features including floating dock, motion control, one-handed UI, voice control and more. The new UI also brings a new mode called – ‘Privacy Space’ that switches access using a revamped fingerprint technology. Moreover, it also combines cloud-based dynamic and static antivirus with a local antivirus and scans hyperlinks in SMS on a real-time basis for effective security. Apart from this, there is better battery management and one can also optimise the battery by going to the Setting option. On the other hand, there are certain bugs as well. For example, when you put the device in aeroplane mode and switch it normal mode, the Bluetooth would switch-on by itself, but, we expect Huawei to be prompt with updates so bot digging much here.
Coming to the device’s performance, the device does not disappoint when it comes to aggressive usage over long periods. It handles almost all the daily tasks whether be it browsing the web, streaming music, WhatsApp and more quite effectively. Multi-tasking on the Honor 8 Lite is a breeze, thanks to the 4GB RAM along with the new and lighter EMUI 5.0 On the gaming front, Honor 8 Lite is able to handle casual games and high-end games without breaking a sweat and we did not face any major overheating issue during our review although the device has a glass panel at the back.
In terms of battery, the 3000mAh battery lasted a full day with still some percentage of battery left. However, it took some time to get fully charged so we don’t get any fast charging here. However, when we stretch our usage, it gave close to 7 hours of backup which might bother some.
Other than this, the call connectivity was good and we faced no major problem during our testing period. While taking a call, when you press the volume button, it gives a boost to voice you are hearing, which can come in handy if you are outdoors in a crowded place. On the other hand, the speaker performance is not at par. When you churn out the volume to the maximum, the speakers tends to give up and it is not able to handle bass and mids that effectively.