Like a deja vu all over again, we loved the Huawei P9 lite and it’s back for more. Except this time, it’s the Huawei Honor 7 Lite – though the differences are pretty slim.
The P9 lite borrows the sharp edges and straight lines from the flagship P9 while the Honor 7 Lite is curvier. The difference is only skin deep here, as both phones share a pretty capable interior.
But hold on a minute. Some of you may know this models as the Honor 5c – and you’d almost be right, it’s just that the Honor 5c doesn’t have a fingerprint reader on the back, while the Honor 7 Lite does. Other than that, they are like identical twins. With that in mind, this review covers both phones (we have the Honor 7 Lite on hand).
Huawei Honor 7 Lite (5c) key features
- Aircraft-grade aluminum frame
- 5.2″ 1080p IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen, 423ppi
- HiSilicon Kirin 650 chipset: octa-core CPU (4xCortex-A53 @ 2.0GHz + 4xCortex-A53 @ 1.7Hz), Mali-T830 MP2 GPU 2GB of RAM; 16GB of built-in storage
- Android 6.0 Marshmallow, Huawei EMUI v4.1 launcher;
- 13MP camera, f/2.0 aperture, manual controls; [email protected] video recording
- 8MP front camera, f/2.0 aperture; 1080p video recording
- Hybrid DualSIM/microSD card slot (up to 256GB)
- Cat. 4 LTE (150/50Mbps) with dual antenna; dual-band Wi-Fi b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot, Wi-Fi Direct; Bluetooth 4.1 LE; NFC; GPS/GLONASS/Beidou; microUSB 2.0
- Optional fingerprint reader (Honor 7 Lite only)
- 3,000mAh Li-Ion battery
- Europe gets the Honor 5c, which doesn’t have a fingerprint reader
- Non-removable battery; no fast charging either
- Only 16GB of inbuilt storage (half of it used up by the OS); you lose SIM2 if you use a microSD card
- No scratch-resistant glass
Compared to P9 lite
- Honor 7 Lite (5c) is slightly cheaper (~50)
- All P9 lite models have a fingerprint reader
- P9 lite has a 3GB RAM option (but 2GB by default)
- Honor 7 Lite (5c) is slightly thicker (8.3mm vs. 7.5mm)
- P9 lite has Cat. 6 LTE (300/50Mbps)
Huawei almost treats Honor as a separate brand. In some markets, the Huawei brand is consolidated with Honor. In others, Honor tries to get a fresh start on its own.
Either way, the Huawei Honor 7 Lite (5c) is slightly more affordable than the P9 lite and yet you get almost exactly the same hardware. Are you paying more for P9’s flagship brand name? Not quite, the P9 lite is actually slightly above the Honor 7 Lite (5c). Slightly.
The Honor 7 Lite has all the rocking features that made the P9 lite such an excellent midranger. It has the same 5.2″ 1080p screen, the same 16nm Kirin 650 chipset backed by a big 3,000mAh battery, and the same 13MP + 8MP camera setup too.
The back is made of aircraft aluminum but is styled differently. We’ll run our in-depth tests to verify that the screen and other components indeed live up to the P9 lite standard.
Note that we’re reviewing the Honor 7 Lite. The Honor 5c is a nearly identical device with the exception of the fingerprint reader. This review is for both phones.