Huawei Honor 9 Hands On: Grey Is Beautiful!

by Joel 2

Huawei Honor 8 turned out to be a successful upper mid-range smartphone for the brand and it was important for its next generation model, the Honor 9 to continue its success. Considering this, the new model has retained the basic design and features of the Honor 8 and added a few extra elements to make it a bit special.

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For example, in the design department, the Honor 9 comes with a 3D curved back made out of glass. The frame is made out of metal to keep the phone sturdy. One of the highlights of the Honor 8 was the reflective back and the same continues in the new generation model.

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The curved glass is not the only change at the back. The Honor 9 makes subtle changes in the arrangement of the dual tone LED flash as well as laser focus, as now they are stacked one above the other. Also, the fingerprint sensor is moved to the front, integrated into the home button just like the Huawei P10. Despite these changes, the basic form factor of the phone remains the same and you’ll easily recognize that the phone is from the Honor family by just looking at its design.

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The phone comes in multiple color options, including black, amber gold and the popular sea blue. However, the brand has added a new color option for the Honor 9 this year — Seagull Gray and it looks beautiful. As you can see in the Honor 9 hands on images, we have got the Seagull Gray model with us.

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The display is vibrant and the touch is responsive. The bezels on the sides are thin and even the black borders (which we all hate) are super thin, thereby not interfering with your display experience.  You can actually check out the quality of the display in our Honor 9 hands on video added below.

The phone has similar dimensions as the Honor 8 — 147.3 x 70.9 x 7.5 mm and it still is lightweight at 155 grams. The curved back helps in the ergonomics and the 5.15-inch compact display ensures that it’ll be easy to use the phone one handed.

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The EMUI 5.1 based on Android 7 running on the Honor 9 is snappy, without any lag. The fluid experience is also due to the powerful Kirin 960 that powers the phone along with 6GB of RAM inside. There are two storage options for the 6GB variant, 64GB and 128GB. There’s another 4GB RAM model with 64GB of storage. Storage on the phone shouldn’t be an issue since it comes with hybrid SIM card slot that uses SIM2 as MicroSD card slot whenever needed.

The sound quality of the phone is also supposed to be excellent as the Hi-Fi chip is said to be tuned by Rainer Maillard. The quality was good but we haven’t tested out the sound output in detail, so we’ll reserve our judgement for our detailed review.

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The speakers, USB Type-C, and the headphone jack are all located at the bottom of the phone. You can take a look at the Mi 6 for comparison, lying on top on the Honor 9.

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As for the dual cameras, the Huawei Honor 9 comes with the same setup as the Huawei P10 — 12MP main RGB camera along with a 20MP monochrome sensor. However, the Honor model lacks the Leica branding. But you get a lot of features in the camera department like moving picture mode (similar to live photos on iPhone) and portrait mode (for bokeh effect on portraits). There’s also hybrid zoom (as clearly mentioned at the back of the phone) for clear, lossless zoom.

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Other features of the phone include NFC, IR port on top, and 3200mAh battery.Honor 9 hands on (7)

The phone starts at 2299 Yuan ($338) for the 4GB model and 2699 Yuan ($397) for the 6GB + 64GB model in China. You can get it for an extra premium price at several resellers online.

So, what do you think about the phone’s design?

Meanwhile, check out some bonus Huawei Honor 9 vs Xiaomi Mi 6 photos below.

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