When I first stumbled upon the Honor 8X, I knew from that moment that the device was going to be a big deal. While this is coming quite late from us at BrumPost, our ordered units had some delays which caused the delays to the scheduled review we’re supposed to have conducted on the device. But that said, let’s dive into the device in full detail.
Honor, a sub-brand of Huawei is really doing a lot this year 2018 and while the year is going to end, their products are seemingly going to be evergreen throughout next year. Considering the design and look of the Honor 8X as an example, this design can go on for 2 years while it’s still going to look very great as though it was a new product.
The Honor 8X comes with a large screen while it is still tucked well within a small body making it fit right well into the palms of your hand. The device also has a glossy glass body with metal lining by the side in the sandwich form. The device also comes with 3 cameras, the new Kirin 710 SoC, and a 64 GB ROM space. But all these are just what we would expect from most devices but considering the price tag, one might think Honor is doing a bonanza when they launched the device in the first place.
But let’s take the device details one after the other. It’s worth noting that despite its long-list of features, it still has some lags which might not really be a deal-breaker to avid fans but could be to those considering switching from the likes of Samsung or LG.
THE DESIGN OF THE HONOR 8X
This is a smartphone with a design trend that can go on for 2 years
The Honor 8X has a 6.5 inch IPS LCD screen with a notch of course. While the notch isn’t a big deal considering the fact that you can hide it away from the settings area or just love it by force, I personally don’t think anything is wrong with notches, after all, it sort of makes devices look modern since it’s almost all Android smartphones that now has notches.
Made of glass and aluminum finish, the honor 8X looks and feels very premium when held. The design of the Honor 8X is distinct from its sister or rival, the Huawei Y9 2019 which has a plastic finish and feels lighter.
The glossy back definitely attracts fingerprints and you might not want that which is why Honor had included a transparent cover that holds the back and sides of the device making the grips even firmer while the device is secured from fingers all over it.
The Honor 8X really looked and feels like an $800 smartphone despite the fact that it’s way cheaper than that ($299). The device’s build quality is what will attract you when you first see it. Black also has a separate color adding up to its beauty. The Blue and Purple gradient color which shift when tilted around is one thing that is now trending on Huawei product lines as it can be well noticed on flagships like the Mate 20 and Huawei Nova.
From the top of the device, it’s clean and has a mouthpiece port which is very tiny. The left side of the device is where the microSD card and the sim cards tray live. Note that all of this is tucked within one tray meaning you can place your both sim cards as well as your 400GB memory card right inside the single tray which is a really genius move by Huawei. Most entry-level smartphone makers are prone to splitting this or simply making the second sim card position on the tray the house of the memory card so you’ll have to decide whether to use double sim cards or single with an SD Card.
The other side of the device is where the volume button and power button are placed. The bottom houses the single speaker of the smartphone as well as its 3.5MM headphone jack and Micro USB port.
This is a turn off for me considering the fact that modern smartphones or should I say smartphones made in 2018 mostly come with USB Type-C especially from a reputable brand like Honor (Huawei’s sub brand). Also, there isn’t fast charging which is really disappointing. The glass back too doesn’t support wireless charging. But well, the device is an affordable smartphone with extreme premium look and feel but doesn’t necessarily have to be entirely premium considering it’s $299 price tag.
When comparing the design of the Honor 8X with Huawei Nova 3i which is a bit more expensive for example, they both feature the same premium look just that the latter has quad AI cameras and a wider notch on the front display. But the Honor 8X really did well to make a device that looks so beautiful which at least is a great selling point.
One other thing that wowed me is the bottom chin which is extremely thin. The device boasts of 91% screen to body ratio which isn’t very common on Android smartphones.
Even the high end Mate 20 Pro has a big chin although Huawei placed the fingerprint scanner there which isn’t a really beautiful move especially considering the fact that most Android users are used to touching their fingerprint scanner using their index finger which is more easy.
Another big surprise as far as the big chin is concerned is the Google Pixel 3 XL which has a really big jaw though there houses the device’s speaker but that might not be really necessary…it’s just a smartphone.
But the Honor 8X really feels like the iPhone XS Max which also has a 6.5 Inch display. Overall, the design is really wonderful and well engineered. This is a smartphone with a design trend that can go on for 2 years without losing out on beauty or fading away in looks.
THE CAMERA OF THE HONOR 8X
The Honor 8X boasts of 3 AI enabled cameras which are really great even in low light. Surprisingly, the device offers a 20 MegaPixel primary lens with an f/1.8 aperture with a 2 MegaPixel Secondary camera lens. The front facing camera is 16 MegaPixel which is really amazing for selfies and all that.
When I was going over the camera specifications of the device, I realised that it doesn’t support the Huawei QMoji AR feature which isn’t really cool with me.
QMoji is the alternative of Animoji found on Apple’s iPhone X and so forth. The QMoji app lets you create a 3D animated emoji of yourself which you can send to your friends. It’s all fund galore. This feature is available on the Huawei Nova 3i but surprisingly not on the Honor. It’s not even present in any of Honor device even the Honor Play.
While that isn’t a deal breaker, the Honor 8X camera still has some really cool AI lens features. The portrait mode camera as well as the bokeh effect is an outstanding thing I noticed on the device. The bokeh though still a bit defective for example, it blurs out your hair when the lighting isn’t entirely great. Unlike the Huawei Y9 2019 which has a dual AI Camera lens on the front, I guess the reason for this might be the absence of the secondary camera on the front.
While we can’t compare the camera capabilities of the Honor 8X with those on Pixel 3 XL or Galaxy Note 9 or even the iPhone XS Max, the Honor 8X’s camera still performed well even in low light.
Videos recorded with the devices are great and skin tone is fantastic. One turn off about the video is that it can’t record 4K resolution and it doesn’t have an Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) which is very present on the Honor Play rival.
Considering the fact that devices such as the Redmi 3 pro comes with nearly the same price tag range while still offering some little bit more of features might make you deviate away from this smartphone.
I love Huawei products and I think they’re really wonderful, they shouldn’t at least be spreading out features across their product lines.
What I meant is that the Honor Play for example has features which are necessary but they are absent on Honor 8X while there are some on Homor 8X which aren’t present on Nova 3i. It’s like they remove this feature and add it to that device.
But anyway, if you still won’t mind the camera’s video shaking any time you’re recording and you’re moving around, then the camera shouldn’t be a problem.
It also has a slow motion capability which can help you record videos in 480 Pixels to grab details and replay those. The slow motion is great but compared to Galaxy Note 9 which has an OIS and brightened Super AMOLED display and costs $1000, you should expect that.
HONOR 8X BATTERY AND PERFORMANCE
This was the tricky part of the device during my tour with it the Honor 8X. The device’s battery is really great and consistent. With a full charge in the morning, I got to work and after logging in for the day and then checking my schedules, I then took the device and headed out.
I took several pictures and then I recorded passersby. At noon, I was already in the 60% range considering the fact that I never let the phone rest. At some point I was feeling the warmth when I was listening to music and playing PUBG at the same time.
While the warmth isn’t threatening, the battery was fine. The smoothness of the game while running other things on the background was really great. Considering the fact that the device uses the Huawei’s HiSilicon Kirin 710 SoC which is a little lower than the Qualcomm Snapdragon 680 found on the Xiaomi Pocofone F1.
Although the number of applications and software I downloaded during my run weren’t that much about 6 of them, so a full avid user that spends all his time on the device might have a separate experience. Also, I’m an heavy user and if you’re corporate person who doesn’t spend much time on smartphones, then you won’t know when last you charged the device.
Aside this, the Honor 8X still comes powered with a great 3750 mAh Li-Po battery. Unlike it’s counterpart the Huawei Y9 2019 which has a whooping 4000 mAh battery capability.
Activities such as streaming videos on YouTube or SoundCloud were smooth and the internet connectivity was great. The Honor 8X though not as powerful as the Honor Play with a bigger RAM (6GB) and a more powerful SoC (Kirin 980), there were of course some little unnoticeable lags though.
For example, after installing an application from Google Play store, launching the application took a little bit of time though not significant but that wasn’t the case with my Huawei Mate 20X.
While the Honor 8X are of two versions namely the version with 4 GB RAM and 64 GB ROM and the second with a 6 GB RAM and 128 GB ROM. the performances on the variant are of course different while the one with a bigger storage performed better and smoother than the lower one. (I got the lower one).
Overall, swiping between applications are playing games were all great. I also enjoyed the experience while running large applications such as Facebook or Microsoft Office Suit. Although I couldn’t download my entire list of applications, But the little I got all performed well and smooth.
THE HONOR 8X EXPERIENCE
The device was smooth and it felt really premium. With that said, the latter is specifically made for gaming while the Honor 8X is a good personal smartphone. Although I had problems using the large screen because of reaching the top of the device to tap on buttons or use the notification area, the device offers a smart screen layout which divides the screen by swiping from the home button to whichever side you want and the screen gets reduced to a quarter. Although I love large displays considering the large 7.21 inch of my current smartphone.
At some point I felt the chin might be of use. Although this is very common in most Android phones. But if you’re switching from devices such as the Honor 8 or some old device with bezels, then switching to a full screen phone might take you some learning curves and it would be best to use your two hands if you’re trying to reach to the top of the display when used.
Although there isn’t a white version of the phone, sometimes, people miss the Honor 8X with an iPhone XS Max whenever they see it from afar. Most people who saw it with me loved it and the layout is very amazing.
My overall experience with the Honor 8X as very fantastic and it’s a device I would recommend to anyone who seeks to get a really powerful android smartphone that comes at an affordable price.
HONOR 8X VERSUS: Should you buy?
The Honor 8X is a really amazing Android smartphone with an amazing design specs. While the Honor 8X is a clear contender against smartphones such as the Honor Play, Huawei Nova 3i or Y9 2019, the Honor 8X too has it’s own powerful and exclusive features that makes it way better than others listed.
If you want a device with a great look and feel which still doesn’t compromise features and performances, then the Honor 8X is for you. The Honor 8X camera unlike Huawei Nova 3i focuses more attentions on the rear camera which offers a more powerful camera lens and aperture something which the Huawei Y9 2019 really lacks.
The Huawei Nova 3i for example boasts of a nice 24 MegaPixel front facing primary lens with a 2 Megapixel supporting secondary lens but the Homor 8X only has a 16 Megapixel front facing camera. The Honor Play is unique on it’s own with a more better camera display though still a single 16 Megapixel camera.
So my point is if you want front facing camera more, then you might consider the Huawei Nova 3i which also offers the Huawei’s QMoji and other AR capabilities. While there isn’t any visible differences in terms of performances as far as the Huawei Y9 2019 or the Huawei Nova 3i are concerned, beauty, camera and screen size might be the distinct which might help you decide which one you’d love to purchase.
HONOR PLAY: An amazing Android smartphone within the affordable range which offers a powerful gaming capabilities and powerful CPU.
HUAWEI NOVA 3I: An affordable Android smartphone from Huawei with powerful Quad AI cameras and beautiful glass design with nearly bezel-less notched 6.3 inch display
HUAWEI Y9 2019: A massive 6.5 inch Android smartphone with a very premium look and a nice Quad AI cameras