If you have loved the design on Honor 8, the Honor 8 Lite would please you as well. Honor 8 was priced high and it was not a choice for many who wanted value for money. But Honor realized this and have now introduced a toned down variant of the Honor 8. Honor 8 Lite still has the same design aesthetics of Honor 8, but it is cheaper and also less powerful. It is priced at around Rs 16500 and let us check out if the Honor 8 is worth buying.
The moment you see the Honor 8 Lite and hold it in your hand, you will feel happy. The glass front and back design is absolutely elegant and feels premium. The design is clean and we have to appreciate Honor for delivering such a good looking phone for price conscious buyers. Hold the phone in hand and turn the phone and you will notice that the design is seamless and smooth. The display gels with the body as the frame around the phone is also smooth. I have seen many phones in this price bracket, that have hard plastic gasket to hold the display and when you swipe on edge, you will feel the hard plastic. That is not the case with Honor 8 Lite. The display, plastic and metal frame are bound in such a way that the finger can smoothly slide from the 2.5D glass to the metal frame and you feel the smoothness. Same is the case with rear. Turning the phone in one hand is very easy due to this and the glass back lets you take selfie photo using rear camera with ease. One disadvantage with rear glass is that it gets scratched easily. The device we got for review is not fresh one and there are lot of scratches all over the back glass panel. It is slippery and fragile. You may end up using it with a case and tempered glass, which is highly advisable.
Black color is the best looking model. When compared with phones under 20k, this one stands tall and stands apart. The front side is dominated by the 5.2″ Full HD display. There are no capacitive navigation keys. Honor logo sits where the navigation keys are usualy placed. This phone has on-screen navigation keys only (yay!). The earpiece grill, front camera and usual set of sensors sit above the display. The glass on front as well as glass on back are curved (2.5D).
Going to back side, the rear camera and flash are placed in top left corner, fingerprint reader is placed in the center of top half and Honor logo and certification details are placed towards the bottom. A secondary microphone and 3.5mm headphone port are at the top. Primary microphone, speaker grill, USB port are at the bottom. Sad to see that this phone still does not have USB-C port. Volume rockers and power keys are on right side, sim card tray is on the left.
The 5.2″ 1080p display is perfect in size. Color reproduction is pretty good, so are the viewing angles. Thanks to EMUI 5.0 and Nougat, the colors pop up and you will feel that the phone is colorful and clean. From display settings page, you can pick particular color temperature, something that is not available on many phones in this price range. If you prefer your phone to have tint of particular color, you can do that. Day dream is available so you can have slideshow of images when the phone is charging. We have not faced any problem with display under direct sunlight. The outdoor visibility is very good when you enable ‘Increase readability under sunlight’ but do note that extended period of time under sunlight can drain the battery faster as the phone operates in maximum brightness mode. Thanks to the 2.5D curved glass, swiping from side feels smooth.
Hardware and Performance
There is 4GB of DDR3 RAM and 64GB of storage onboard. You can expand storage space further by using a microSD card. The downside here is that the slot is hybrid slot so you can either use a SIM card or a microSD card. The Kirin 655 chip is a very capable chip and it i9s evident when EMUI runs without any lag. The graphics processor is not among the best ones for midrangers. Game play was smooth but rendering is not good. The edges are jagged and frame drops are evident. When such games are played under medium graphics mode, the game play is smoother.
The rear fingerprint sensor unlocks the phone in just 0.3 second. You need not place your finger in a specific direction. I still prefer front side sensor as I do not have to lift the phone every time I want to unlock it. But given that bezels are getting thinner and thinner, it is hard to wish for front side scanner. Call quality is good and network latching was spot on.
Higher light sensitivity creates outstanding photo quality. Honor 8 Lite features a 12MP camera with 1.25μm pixels, PDAF fast focus with a speed of just 0.3 seconds, bringing a quicker, more accurate shooting experience. Honor 8 Lite’s BSI CMOS sensor enables you to capture decent shots even in low light conditions. The 8MP front camera with f/2.0, 77° wide angle lens, and on the Honor 8 Lite enables you to capture your most good selfies under all lighting conditions.
The quality of images would delight you. The color pop out, yet stay natural. The HDR mode is very effective and natural. The exposure is perfect and contrast levels are good. Focusing is fast and accurate. The flash is powerful. The images have a decent depth of focus. The images are sharp and have a good amount of detail. Front camera is pleasing as well. Brightness is a bit more and color saturation is slightly off the mark. But if you turn off the beauty mode, you get some decent selfies from the camera. The quality of videos is pleasant as well. Overall, the Honor 8 Lite is a champion in camera department.
The 3000mAh battery easily lasts through the day. The reason for this is Kirin 655 chip and lightweight EMUI 5.0 OS. When compared to previous versions, this version of EMUI (based on Android 7.0) is lightweight, slick and fluid. This translates into better battery life. You also get Ultra power saving mode that gives you ridiculous amount of battery life but you will be disconnected from application world.
Priced at INR 16,999, the Honor 8 Lite is worth the price tag, if you are able to protect the phone’s back panel. There is lot of competition in this price segment. Phones like Vivo V5 and Oppo are easily available offline. Asus Zenfone 3 had a major price cut and there is the capable all-rounder Nubia Z11 Mini S. For those who love pure Android experience, Moto G5 Plus is available. Where does Honor 8 Lite stand? For those who want a phone that fits perfectly in hand, looks gorgeous with great performance and battery life, Honor 8 Lite is for them. The best part is that the Honor 8 Lite looks unique and it does not look like iPhone or a Galaxy flagship. The Honor 8 Lite is a very good phone with clean and stunning looking design, capable processor, lightweight OS and more importantly, a very good battery life. But it is a very fragile and slippery mobile. If you drop it, the mobile’s front and back may get damaged severely. So if you are confident and careful, you can go for it.