The flagship Honor 30/30 Pro + models have not yet reached us, which, however, does not prevent the brand from offering other new products. Today, let’s take a look at the Honor 9A smartphone with Huawei mobile services. It belongs to the segment of low-cost phones, but it has several notable features that can make the Honor 9A a budget bestseller. Let’s talk about all the advantages and disadvantages of new items.
Display, design and battery. All that pleasantly surprised
A smartphone looks more expensive than its price. We had Honor 9A in shimmering blue and icy green. In human language, it is respectively green and bright turquoise, both with fashionable overflows. So the first one is quite standard, including for other Honor models. But bright turquoise (aka “icy green”) is very unexpected and very pleasing to the eyes.
It does not shimmer as much as “flickering blue”, showing an airy pixel rainbow only from a certain angle of view. In general, this coloring looks fresh and not worn out. Alas, in the photographs, the main apparatus was mainly Honor 9A of a different, brighter color. She is not bad, but more familiar.
Fingerprints remain on such a surface, but they are almost invisible. Since the smartphone is equipped with a huge battery, you cannot call it skinny and light. But the protrusion with the cameras practically does not bulge out – the thickness of this block, towering above the back panel, is about a millimeter.
Speaking of battery. The capacity of 5000 mAh was enough for two and a half days of hard tests of the smartphone. In the calm mode of normal daily use, the Honor 9A will confidently show three days of operation without recharging.
In general, the screen here is standard: 6.3 inches, with a resolution of 720 × 1600 pixels, is made using IPS technology. A good impression is due to the fact that we expected something less quality from the phone at this price. And we got a display that is practically no different from the same Honor 20. Yes, the resolution is lower, but you can’t see it so easily.
In addition, the screen was almost not affected by the cutout under the front camera – it is small here, teardrop-shaped. The budget essence of the device is issued only by a too thick “lip” under the display. In smartphones, they learned to get rid of it more expensive by making indented symmetrical top and bottom. But in the “budget” so far everything is the old fashioned way.
MicroUSB again! Disadvantages of Honor 9A
Honor and Huawei seem to be the last brands that stubbornly stick the obsolete microUSB port into their budget models. And we are surprised at this every time. It is hoped that someday their stocks will run out and we will stop kicking manufacturers for it.
Functionally, the use of microUSB compared to USB Type-C does not affect the operation of the smartphone. However, this is a small, but still noticeable issue of user convenience. In addition, not least because of microUSB under the display you have to observe a wide indent.
If Honor had put Kirin 710 in its smartphone, there would have been no questions about the new product in terms of performance. On the other hand, then the phone would probably cost more.
Be that as it may, the model received a Mediatek MT6762 Helio P22 chip. This is a rather old 8-core processor, the first smartphones on which were released back in 2018. The chip is focused on budget devices, and this is obvious.
The good sides of Helio P22 include the fact that it is quite cold (at least in the case of Honor 9A) and does not differ in strong power consumption. All this is offset by the fact that the processor is frankly slow. Even in interface animations, jerks are often noticeable. You can’t count on serious mobile gaming – in the best case, “heavy” games will go at the minimum settings.
Helio P22 – not horror, horror. This is the usual budget decision with all that it implies. In the case of Honor 9A, the appearance of the smartphone and its screen give hope that we will get more hardware than it should for this price. But no, they just put a chip that fully corresponds to the class of the phone.
Here we list what cannot be attributed to either advantages or disadvantages. However, we cannot ignore such things.
In the theory of cameras, three, except for the front, but in fact – one and a half. We explain. The two-megapixel scene depth sensor can be considered a camera purely formally. In fact, it seems that they are now putting it on all budget smartphones, if only it would be possible to tell about a large number of photo sensors in advertising. A wide-angle 5-megapixel camera is a little more useful – this is exactly that “half”. Perhaps someone will find use for it, but certainly not at dusk, and in the afternoon you will have to somehow justify the “soapiness” of the pictures.
But the main 13-megapixel sensor is very good! True, sometimes you will have to try for good photos. So, the smartphone does not have a night mode, but you can get a good shot – just don’t be too lazy to experiment. In the selection above there is a picture taken at night. Yes, it’s better not to bring it closer, then, taking into account the cost of the device, we get excellent night photography. At the same time, it should be borne in mind that a decent shot was obtained from the tenth time.
In daylight, there are no such difficulties, everything is so good. Not the flagship, of course, but Instagram will be pleased. The main thing is not to rely on digital zoom.
Everything is standard here. There is a very fast and accurate fingerprint sensor on the rear panel. You can also use the front camera to unlock the face. This method is quite accurate, even in absolute darkness, but slow. We chose the good old fingerprinting.
ay by phone
Recently, we had news that Honor and Huawei smartphones brought an analogue of Apple Pay and Samsung Pay. It’s about the Pay Wallet app. There you can store not only payment cards, but also discount ones. For example, my card “Vitalyura” was added with a bang.
Honor 9A is one of the few budget devices with an NFC chip. So, they can pay for purchases. However, in the first months, “Wallet Pay” only works with Belarusbank cards. It turned out to be problematic to find such a phone during the test, so we did not manage to directly test contactless payment. In theory, there should not be any fundamental differences from Apple Pay and Samsung Pay. In this case, we get the third strongest player in the mobile payment segment. It’s great!
So if you have a Belarusbank card or you are ready to wait a couple of months, you will get the same convenient feature as the owners of Apple and Samsung smartphones.
Given the price and capacious battery, the Honor 9A looms the only serious competitor – Xiaomi Redmi 8. The choice between them is ambiguous.
The two phones have similar dimensions, displays, autonomy, price, performance and Wi-Fi at 2.4 GHz. Of the technical aspects on the side of Redmi 8 are fast charging, USB Type-C and an additional gigabyte of RAM. At the same time, Honor 9A looks more expensive than its rival, it has a more current version of Bluetooth (5.0), less thickness and width with a slightly larger screen, as well as the possibility of NFC-payment in stores. What is more important in this case is for the buyer to decide.
The Honor 9A smartphone was pleasantly surprised by the “longevity” and mint cover design. In addition, the main camera shoots well (the main thing is not to be marketing about three photomodules), there is a large nice display and the ability to pay by phone via NFC. At the same time, it’s definitely time to get rid of the microUSB connector. The Helio P22 processor naturally fits into the price concept of the Honor 9A, but, despite this, I still want something more productive.
Even taking into account the shortcomings, the Honor 9A remains almost the only smartphone in its price category, which, in addition to a capacious battery, has enough other “goodies”. He would have USB Type-C and some Kirin 710, and there would be an unconditional top.