Huawei has unveiled the successor to Honor 5X in the ongoing technology show- CES 2017 in Las Vegas. Dubbed as Honor 6X, the smartphone was first unveiled in China in October 2016 and will be available in two variants, one with 3GB of RAM+32GB of storage, and the other packing 4GB of RAM paired with 64GB of storage.
Huawei plans to unveil the smartphone by the end of January in the Indian market and we expect it to be priced around R. 14,000 for the 3GB RAM variant. We got the chance to test the smartphone beforehand and here's our first impressions of the Honor 6X.
Pleasing Design but nothing Exceptional
Crafted out of metal, Honor 6X resembles most of the budget smartphones these days that flaunts a glossy White colored front paired with Gold, Silver or Dark Grey rear panels. Honestly, this design is getting outdated and I expect smartphone makers to try something new.
Nevertheless, what sets apart the handset from the lot is the nicely fitted dual-lens camera setup at the rear, which is the USP of the smartphone.
A fingerprint sensor that also works as shutter button to click pictures, brings down the notification tray and also allows you to scroll the pictures in gallery, sits at the bottom of the camera setup. And not to forget the dual-tone LED flash light that is placed adjacent to camera setup.
Honor 6X feels quite sturdy in hands and the slightly curved metal back with rounded corners makes the smartphone ergonomic. The right side of the handset has the volume rockers and power button, and the hybrid SIM card slot sits at the left side.
A 3.5mm headphone jack along with a microphone is placed on top and the microUSB charging port rests at the bottom. Two speaker grills are also provided on either side of the charging port, however only one of them, the one on the right is functional. The left one is just put to add symmetry to the design.
Despite the 5.5-inch display, I found the smartphone quite compact and fit for one-hand operation.
Overall, the design is pleasing to eyes and practical in everyday usage, but nothing exceptional.
Bright and Vivid 5.5-inch Full HD Display
The smartphone sports a 5.5-inch full-HD IPS display with 2.5D curved glass protection. I am quite pleased with the 1080p screen and it's probably one of the best displays around on a smartphone in under Rs. 15,000.
The text, images, icons and everything else look crisp and sharp. The good viewing angles and decent brightness level make it easy to use the smartphone under direct sunlight.
The capable 12MP + 2MP Dual-Lens Camera Setup
With Honor 6X, Huawei wants to make the dual-lens camera technology accessible in the budget price-point. The smartphone ships with a dual-lens camera setup at the rear side, featuring a 12MP primary sensor along with a 2MP secondary camera.
The secondary camera is provided to achieve the depth of field and background blur feature, which it handles quite well. I managed to get some really amazing shots with the dual-lens camera setup, which is hard to believe have come from a smartphone of this price-point.
But it is worth mentioning that the results are not always satisfactory because camera's software does all the magic here, which is not very consistent.
The camera app has all the required modes and filters to please the shutterbugs. There is Pro camera, pro video, slow motion, HDR, time-lapse, background blur, various filters and some others to let you tweak with the images you capture.
While I am quite pleased with the camera performance delivered by Honor 6X, I will reserve my final verdict till the time I also test the recently launched Coolpad Cool 1 Dual, which also offers a dual-lens camera setup featuring a 13MP+13MP rear camera, even good in numbers compared to Honor 6X.
Coming on to the front, Honor 6X has an 8MP front camera, which gets the job done. You can get some really good selfies with the wide-angled front camera that also offers beautification modes.
Huawei's Kirin 655 CPU with 3GB/4GB RAM
Honor 6X comes with the company's in-house Kirin 655 chipset, which is an octa-core CPU with four cores clocked at 1.2GHz and the remaining four clocked at 1.7GHz to handle intensive tasks. The processor is paired with 3GB and 4GB RAM to support multitasking.
The performance Honor 6X offers in everyday routines have made me wonder how far mobile phones have come in last two years. I played several games on the handset including- Contact Killer Sniper, Marvel Contest of Champions, Asphalt 8, Death Race, etc. and was stunned to see the lag free gaming performance on this budget handset.
There were no frame drops in game play and the handset managed to keep the heating effect in control, which is a plus point here as most of the smartphones priced in this category (and some even higher) heats up during strenuous tasks.
I got the unit with 4GB of RAM that easily handled multitasking without breaking a sweat.
Android 6.0.1 with Huawei EMUI 4.0
The Honor 6X runs Huawei's custom skin- EMUI 4.1, which is based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow. Like most of the Chinese handsets and company's previous smartphones, it's a single-layered skin sans an app drawer resulting in all the apps spreading over the home screens.
The user interface is snappy and I haven't noticed any lags or app crashes during my usage. The animations and stock icons look quite clean and polished. Besides, the level of detailing Huawei has put in stock applications such as calendar, clock, notes, etc. is appreciable.
There's a dedicated 'theme' store that offers several custom themes with icons, wallpapers, etc. to give your smartphone a whole new look.
Decent 3,340 mAh battery unit
Battery backup is one area where I think Huawei could have done better. The smartphone ships with a 3,340 mAh non-removable battery unit, which is good enough to last for a day but lacks behind smartphones such as Lenovo K6 Power, Xiaomi Redmi Note 3, etc. that ships with bigger 4,000 mAh battery units.
We used the smartphones for music playback, YouTube videos, occasional gaming, web browsing and other everyday tasks, and Honor 6X managed to last for a day which is good but not the best in the market in the respective price-point.
Connectivity and Storage
As far as the connectivity options are concerned, Honor 6X offers 4G VoLTE, Bluetooth 4.1, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, and GPS/ A-GPS. The smartphone has hybrid dual-SIM card slot, which can be used to expand the inbuilt storage to up to 128GB.
Honor 6X is one of those devices that redefine what budget smartphones are capable of. The handset features a capable dual-lens camera setup, a snappy chipset paired with ample RAM to give your old PC a complex, a crisp full HD screen and all the required connectivity and security features you would expect from a smartphone in 2017. Now it all comes down to its price-point.
If Huawei manages to price the handset under Rs. 14,000, then it will be dubbed as the most affordable smartphone with dual-lens camera setup, otherwise the recently launched Coolpad Cool 1 Dual will take the cake.
Stay tuned for the price of the smartphone on GIZBOT.