HomeReviewsHuawei Nova 3 First Impressions: Is it beauty with brains?

Huawei Nova 3 First Impressions: Is it beauty with brains?

The Nova 3 comes loaded with impressive design along with some flagship-level specifications. However, does this beauty comes with beastly performance? That is too early to say, but we got the chance to spent some time with the device and here is our first impressions.

Huawei has today introduced Nova series in the Indian market and first the smartphone in this is Nova 3. The smartphone comes with a price tag of Rs 34,999 and it will be exclusively available on Amazon India starting from August 23.

With this, Huawei has introduced its second smartphone that comes with quad-camera setup, with the first being from its sub-brand Honor, the Honor 9i. The Nova 3 comes loaded with impressive design along with some flagship-level specifications. However, does this beauty deliver performance? That is too early to say, but we got the chance to spent some time with the device and here is our first impressions.

Design and Display

Huawei Nova 3

Huawei is known for making smartphones that do look attractive and this one is no exception. The Nova 3 comes with a glass body that speaks premium quality. We got the Twilight colour variant for the review and it certainly looks different as compared to other devices available in the market. There is a perfect blend of Blue and Purple hues that gives a pretty dope look to the device. However, being a glass body means that it is extremely fragile and prone to smudges. But thankfully, the company is giving a silicone cover to solve the latter issue.

The front comes with a fullscreen display, and yes there is a notch at the top that houses an earpiece flanked between two front-facing cameras. The phone features minimal bezels around its edges and the navigation buttons are on-screen. The right houses volume controls and power on/off button, while the left houses dual-SIM slot. The base comes with 3.5mm audio jack along with USB Type-C port and a speaker grille, while the top is bare.

Huawei Nova 3

The back panel comes with vertically-aligned dual rear cameras along with LED flash situated at the top-left corner, while there is a fingerprint sensor at the top-centre position. That said, the phone looks similar to other Huawei and Honor devices that were launched recently in India, however, still it manages to give some premium design.

Coming to display, the Huawei Nova 3 features a 6.3-inch Full HD+ display with a screen resolution of 2340 x 1080 pixels along with an aspect ratio of 19:5:9 and 85 per cent NTSC colour gamut. The display looks promising. It is quite bright. The colour looks beautiful and the contrast ratio is at par with the rest of the competition. We will talk more about this in our upcoming review.

Hardware and Software

Huawei Nova 3

On the hardware front, the Huawei Nova 3 comes loaded with flagship-level specifications. The handset is fueled by an HiSilicon Kirin 970 octa-core processor that clocks at 2.36 GHz processor with Mali-G72 MP12 GPU. The smartphone has 6GB of RAM and internal storage of 128GB storage, which is expandable via a microSD card slot. The specs look loaded and it would be interesting to see whether it gives a flagship-level performance for this price point or not. The Kirin 970 is expected to deliver decent performance, but it seems to lag behind its Qualcomm counterpart, the Snapdragon 845 SoC, which offers much better performance. So, wait for our review to find out about the performance.

On the software front, the Nova 3 features an Android 8.1.0 Oreo operating system out of the box with MUI 8.2 on top. The user interface from Huawei does come with some interesting customisation options. You have the option to choose between iPhone-like swiping on the home screen or an app drawer. We will be discussing more the user interface in our detailed report. So, stay tuned with us for the in-depth review of the Huawei Nova 3.


Huawei Nova 3

The major highlight of the device is the quad-camera setup. The Huawei Nova 3 comes with dual rear cameras of a 16-megapixel sensor with LED flash, f/1.8 aperture, PDAF and 24-megapixel sensor with f/1.8 aperture. For the front also, it has dual cameras of 24-megapixel with f/2.0 aperture and 2-megapixel sensors.

The camera UI is pretty simple and easy to use. We liked that the fact the Pro mode does give you some beneficial options like aperture, metering, white balance and more, making it easier to play with different settings. The photo came out to good, when the condition is ideal, though it is too early to comment on the camera performance as we haven’t tested it in our light conditions.

Battery and Connectivity

Huawei Nova 3

On the battery front, the Huawei Nova 3 features a 3750mAh battery with quick charging. On the connectivity front, it supports Hybrid dual SIM slot (nano-SIM + nano SIM/microSD), Wi-Fi 802.11ac (2.4GHz/5GHz), Bluetooth 4.2 LE, Dual 4G VoLTE, GPS, and a USB Type-C port.


The Huawei Nova 3, on paper, is a fully loaded device in terms of specs and features. The Twilight colour gives a premium look. The phone is equipped with quad-camera setup, which looks promising but needs to tested. As for the competition is concerned, the phone will face a stiff competition with the likes of Asus Zenfone 5Z, OnePlus 6 and more.

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