Huawei, the Chinese technology brand that seems to be taking a foothold in the smartphone market, builds phones that sit at all spectrums of price points. On the high end of the spectrum, Huawei offers the cutting-edge, top-of-the-line $700 P9 with a pressure sensitive touchscreen and Leica-certified lenses. On the other end of the spectrum sits the $180 Honor 5X, while devoid of all the fancy features of the P9, certainly fits within the bargain-priced device group. And now, Huawei’s new phone offering, the Honor 8, at $400 sits somewhere right in the middle.
The Honor 8 is the company’s newest offering, and it maintains a delicate balance between high-end, expensive devices and simple, cost-cutting smartphones. The Honor 8 delivers some very fancy features while maintaining a reasonable price point. The phone launched in China in early July of this year. Now, at an event in San Francisco, the company announced it will be releasing in the United States on August 17 for the palatable price of $400
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Huawei’s Honor 8 boasts some impressive specifications and features
The hardware powering the Huawei Honor 8 is something to be reckoned with, especially at such a reasonable price. The phone packs an octa-core Kirin 950 processor with four 2.3 GHz Cortex-A72 chips. These powerful beasts are complemented by four low-power, 1.8 GHz Cortex A53 co-processors, which will take on the load of lighter tasks. Additionally, the phone comes with 4GB of RAM.
This impressive processing setup is accompanied by a 5.2-inch 1920×1080-pixel IPS LCD screen. Adding to these impressive specifications is the presence of 64GB of internal storage, complemented by a Micro SD slot, allowing users to increase the amount of storage as they see fit. The phone also contains a “3D” fingerprint sensor that supports what Huawei’s has dubbed “Smart Key” gestures. For example, tapping the sensor twice in quick succession launches the camera application, and and tapping once while viewing a photo allows the user to move on to the next photo.
The Honor 8 also boasts support for dual-band Wi-Fi, LTE, as well as Bluetooth 4.2 Low Energy. Furthermore, the phone has the usual accelerometer, compass, proximity senson, and gyroscope.
The phone keeps all these features going with a 3,000mAh Lithium-Polymer better that lasts “more than a day,” according to Huawei. They claim that the phone can get about 20 hours of use playing continuous music, or up to 11 hours of video on a single charge. On top of that, the phone supports quick charging which would bring a dead battery up to half-full in about 30 minutes.
To top all of these features out is the fact that the phone runs on top of Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow, allowing Huawei’s Emotion User Interface to run along smoothly. The Honor 8 will obviously receive regular patched that correspond with Google’s monthly Android security updates.
Dual cameras the highlight of the Honor 8
The highlight of the phone’s features, however, are certainly the cameras. Boasting two cameras, the phone has quite an impressive set of lenses. The front-facing camera is an 8-megapixel, f/2.2 aperture lens, while the rear camera is the same as the company’s flagship P9. This means it’s a dual-sensor, 12-megapixel camera with an f/2.2 aperture. According to Huawei, the camera is able to combine the color data from the camera’s RGB sensor and the brightness from a secondary monochrome sensor, which allows it to capture incredible quality photos in low light levels. Additionally, the monochrome sensor can be used on its own, allowing users to take high-quality black-and-white photos.
Furthermore, the Honor 8 features Huawei’s “Hybrid Focus” technology, a feature which utilizes laser depth data and phase detection to focus on subjects, then a wide-aperture mode allows users to create depth-of-field effects. If this camera produces results as good as the P9’s, then it will be one of the most advanced smartphone cameras, period.
Honor 8 releases at a palatable price point
Right now, the Honor 8 is only available in China and the United States. In the States, users can buy the 32GB version of the phone for $400. The 64GB variant runs at $450. As of the time of writing, pre-orders are set to run from August 17 until September 3, and with a pre-order comes a $50 gift card with the company. You can currently pick up the phone through Amazon, Best Buy, Newegg, and B&H.
Full Specifications for the Huawei Honor 8
- 5.2-inch display with a 1920×1080 pixel resolution (423ppi)
- Octa-core Huawei-made HiSilicon Kirin 950 processor
- Two 12-megapixel rear cameras with flash
- 8-megapixel front camera with flash
- 32GB (or 64GB) of internal storage with 4GB of RAM
- MicroSD card slot up to 256GB of additional space
- 3,000mAh battery with quick charging
- USB-C charger port
- Android 6.0 with Emotion 4.1 UI
- IR Blaster, NFC, USB-C, 3.5mm headphone jack