Huawei’s sub-brand Honor has become a popular name in the smartphone market. The honor 8 and honor 8 pro received wide applause for being great all-rounders. Honor’s most recent release, the Honor 9i also claims to be an excellent phone for the price range it is in. Let’s take a look at what it has to offer and decide for ourselves.
The screen is the part of the phone which users interact with most. The 9i comes with a 5.9-inch display with an 18:9 aspect ratio. This means you get a bigger screen for a smaller size which is always good. It has a Full HD+ 2160x1080p resolution which makes it an excellent display for day-to-day tasks like social media usage, media consumption etc. There is an option to change the color temperatures which helps when reading or using the phone in general late at night. The screen is bright enough when used indoors but you may struggle with it just a bit when out under direct sunlight.
The Honor 9i feels like a flagship smartphone because of the build. The phone has a unibody metal design and only 7.5 mm thin. On the back, the LED flash, dual cameras, and the fingerprint scanners are arranged neatly in a vertical line. Because of the taller display, we found that reaching the fingerprint scanner could be a little easier if it was placed further down. The phone has a micro-USB port for charging and data transfer operations. It also has a 3.5 mm headphone jack and a loudspeaker on either side.
Honor 9i is the first phone in India to sport dual cameras on the rear as well as the front. On the back, there is a 16MP + 2MP setup with the capability to shoot 4K video. The 16MP is used to take pictures while the 2MP camera adds depth to the pictures. In daylight, the rear camera takes great pictures. The Bokeh effect is a great feature and works really well. It also has other features like pro mode, portrait mode, and a wide aperture mode. The rear camera takes great photos overall. We found that the pictures have good color reproduction and noticeable details. However, the noise reduction could be better.
On the front, there is 13MP + 2MP setup with an LED flash for low light pictures. The front camera also sports bokeh mode which is quite good. The beauty mode is a great addition but sometimes it softens photos a little too much and even wheatish skin complexions come out lighter.
The video recording could be better on the 9i. We shot videos and found them to be shaky.
The Honor 9i has a Kirin 659 chipset which is a fast enough processor. The RAM on 9i is 4 GB. For day-to-day tasks, the processor is sufficient and almost never lags. However, the phone when used for gaming may lag a bit. It’s not too bad, but if you have used a better phone and have downgraded to 9i, you will notice it. The phone also gets slightly warm when gaming and using a camera but it won’t obstruct use.
The hardware is by no means insufficient and is very decent for daily use. The cell reception was excellent too and it supports all carriers’ 4G network.
The audio is also quite good with two loudspeakers and is loud enough. On using earphones, the user can access equalizer settings and Huawei’s sound effects are enabled too. You also have a 3D sound feature which when enabled gives great sound. It does, however, cancel out equalizer settings.
The phone boasts a 3400 mAh battery which is quite sufficient for a day’s usage leaving you with some juice at the end of the day. Gaming does have an unusually high battery drain. The battery life is great and can be increased by using the built-in battery saving modes which cut off background processes. Sadly, the phone does not support fast charging.
To sum it up:
Honor focuses on building all-rounder phones and the 9i just goes to prove that. The 18:9 aspect ratio and a great build is a bonus. The great battery is also another achievement. The Honor 9i is among the best phones in its budget. It does offer great value for money and if you want a great camera and a stylish phone, Honor 9i should be in your pocket.