Honor has been disrupting the mid-range smartphone market for some time and the company's latest handset Honor 20i is a successor to last year's mid-range Honor 10i, which comes with a stunning glass-finish in a gradient pattern that makes the handset elegant at the first look.
The handset is far lighter than its competitors like Redmi Note 7 or Realme 3 Pro and noticeably, it is the only phone priced below Rs.15K that is offering a storage capacity of 128 GB, besides a fast fingerprint sensor, dual VoLTE support and easy to handle.
In fact, the Honor 20i is a trimmed down version of the latest Honor 20 handset with some appealing features like triple camera setup, metal coating colour and an irresistible design that makes the device match any expensive phone available in the market.
Before we get to our review of the phone, let's take a look at the specifications:
Honor 20i Specifications at a glance:
- Display: 6.21-inch Full HD+ screen
- CPU: Kirin 710F/Octa-Core
- RAM: 4GB
- Storage: 128GB
- Camera: 24MP f/1.8 + 8MP and 120-degree wide lense
- Battery: 3400mAh
- OS: Android Pie, EMUI 9.0.1
- Add-ons: Fast face unlock, Fingerprint scanner, dual nano-SIM, dedicated microSD card slot, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0
As already said, the Honor 20i scores on looks and design with a sleek body that is light and easy to hold. The rear panel has a curved design giving it a unique gleam, made possible using 3D Photolithography technology. The beautiful gradient finish gives the device a stunning look that captures the attention of buyers instantly. The fast face unlock in the front and the fingerprint scanner on the rear make the device handy and comfortable, instantly unlocking the device for use.
The Honor 20i is powered by the 12nm-based Kirin 710 chipset with 4GB RAM. It runs on Android Pie with Magic UI. For most day-to-day tasks, communication, streaming and browsing, the 4GB RAM should suffice. With 128GB storage capacity, the phone is far above its peers in the market and ideal to keep all your favourite games and optimize app experience.
With an expandable storage capacity up to 512GB, you never run out of space. Turbo-charged graphics processing GPU Turbo 2.0 technology is good for gamers to experience a smooth and full-frame gaming experience.
It may be noted that the GPU Turbo 2.0 technology has topped popular mobile game adaptations such as Arena of Valor, Vainglory, Mobile Legends, PUBG Mobile, and Rules of Survival. However, speaker capacity is not as good as it is in other mid-range phones. Display under normal conditions is good but dims out under direct sunlight, hindering visibility.
Apart from gaming, for other tasks, especially when running more than two music apps at a time, the strain on the processor makes it lag at times. Otherwise, the Magic UI seems pretty good on the Honor 20i for multi-tasking in most other apps.
The AI triple camera setup has one 24MP primary camera with f/1.8 aperture that captures the world around effortlessly and another 8MP wide-angle camera to capture the scenic beauty with a 17mm ultra-wide-angle lens to capture a 120º wide-angle apt for landscape shots and full-body portraits. The third one is a 2MP depth sensor.
The main 24MP camera is able to capture detailed shots outdoors when there's bright light as seen above. The company said AI algorithms have been improved so much that no unnaturally oversaturated images will be made.
Somehow, the option to disable AI enhancements after clicking the image is not available in this device, perhaps removed.
The wide-angle camera option provides correction for edge distortion but images are soft when clicked indoors. In all, the Honor 20i can shoot fair and detailed images with a wide dynamic range provided there is proper lighting.
In night mode, the picture loses details.
Its front camera has a 32MP to take selfies in any light with the AI backlight imaging and screen ring light filling technology. This should make selfie-loving users happy, especially when they are taking them outdoors.
In portrait mode, Beautify is turned on by default as this is becoming common in all the latest devices across all brands.
As for the battery, the phone comes with a 3,400mAh capacity, limiting its usage to less than a full day. It takes about 10 minutes for a 15% charge and the full charging takes one hour and fifteen minutes. Usually, the battery lasts for the entire day and for us, it gave a screen on time of around 4 hours.
The battery depletes faster with gaming, especially when one uses it for PUBG. Since the device comes with a 10W charger in the box (no fast charging), this may put Honor 20i at a disadvantage compared to other rivals who have bigger batteries, or fast charging or both.
With a rounded corner design - the length of the screen diagonal measures 15.77cm, the Honor 20i comes with a rear panel fitted with glass using the 3D photolithography technology, making it a dynamic prism-shaped color gradient with a gleaming effect at the back, shining whenever you move it.
The Honor 20i sports a 6.21-inch Full HD+ (2340x1080) display with a dewdrop notch rather than a punch-hole and an over 90% of screen-to-body ratio, good for viewing and gaming experience. Touch response and display will remain its major attributes.
The Honor 20i was first launched in China with a starting price of CNY 1,599 (approx Rs 16,600). Its India pricing at Rs.14,999 is still lower but the phone may face stiff competition from the mid-range alternative phones from Xiaomi, Realme, and Vivo. If you're looking to buy a mid-ranger, it makes a perfect sense to buy Honor 20i.