Huawei isn’t a really massive title within the Indian smartphone house. So far, the Google Nexus 6P (Review) and the Huawei P9 (Review) have been probably the most recognisable merchandise from this firm, however we’ve seen little else over time. Now, that is likely to be about to alter. The firm seems to be instrumental in driving the growth of Android globally and for 2018, it’s specializing in expanding its presence in India.
Huawei’s sub-brand Honor has been in a position to make a minor dent within the Indian smartphone market, going by a current report from Counterpoint Research, so it solely is sensible for Huawei to try to get as a lot of its merchandise right here as potential so as to bolster its place. The 12 months began off with the corporate launching its flagship choices, the P20 Pro (Review) and P20 Lite (Review), and now for the primary time, we have now its Nova sequence within the nation too. The Nova 3 and Nova 3i have launched at very aggressive worth factors, each that includes 4 digital camera sensors and synthetic intelligence (AI) capabilities.
We’ll be testing the Nova 3 at the moment, which is priced at Rs. 34,999 and takes on the OnePlus 6 (Review) head-on. The latter has confirmed to be a formidable providing, so we’re going to search out out whether or not the Nova 3’s AI chops swing issues in its favour.
Huawei Nova 3 design
This 12 months, most new smartphones appear to be sticking to a set design mantra – preserve the display borders skinny, throw in a taller show, and add a notch. The Nova 3 checks all these bins, which you would possibly or won’t like. Apart from the design, the brand new Iris Purple color choice is bound to seize eyeballs. The higher portion of the cellphone’s rear is blue, and it progressively fades into purple on the decrease half, which supplies it a surprising look. The Twilight color model of the P20 Pro had an identical impact, however sadly, that choice didn’t make it to India. There’s a black model of the Nova 3 too, in case that is too out-there for you.
The construct high quality of the Huawei Nova 3 is excellent and the steel body on the perimeters is extensive sufficient to supply good grip, however the glass again is extremely slippery and picks up smudges very simply. The buttons on the correct have good tactile suggestions and the ability button is textured so it’s straightforward to inform it other than the amount rocker. There’s a hybrid dual-SIM tray on the left, which might accommodate a microSD card rather than a second SIM. Dual 4G VoLTE can be supported. At the underside, you get a headphone socket, USB Type-C port (USB 2.zero pace) and the speaker grille.
The Iris Purple color seems completely gorgeous
The 6.3-inch IPS show produces vivid colors and the full-HD+ (2340×1080) decision ensures a excessive sufficient pixel density of 409ppi for easy color gradients in footage and sharp textual content. Brightness can be good, and the Nova 3 is kind of legible beneath daylight. However, the show lacks Gorilla Glass or any type of scratch safety, which isn’t one thing we anticipated from a cellphone at this worth. Our unit didn’t choose up any scratches throughout our check interval, however you would possibly wish to use a display protector to be on the safer aspect.
The borders across the show and the notch make this cellphone resemble the iPhone X quite a bit, and this is without doubt one of the few Android telephones with a comparatively slim chin on the backside. The notch homes two cameras, an earpiece, a notification LED, and an infrared emitter. The latter fires up when utilizing face recognition in low gentle.
Huawei has stored the fingerprint sensor too, which is in the back of the cellphone. The glass again held up effectively in opposition to scratches and scuffs throughout the one week we used this cellphone, however the end on the perimeters of the digital camera bump started to point out indicators of scuffing. The Nova 3 ships with a fast charger, Type-C cable, headset, TPU case, and SIM eject software. The high quality of the equipment is sweet, so we have now no complaints.
All the ports on the Huawei Nova 3 are positioned on the backside
Huawei Nova 3 specs, software program, and options
The Huawei Nova 3 is effectively outfitted to deal with multitasking and comparatively heavy utilization too. It is constructed across the firm’s personal top-end SoC, known as the Kirin 970. This octa-core chip has been used within the Huawei P20 Pro in addition to the Honor 10 (Review) and Honor View 10 (Review). Compared to the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, the Kirin 970 finds it robust to maintain up relating to uncooked CPU and GPU energy. The distinction is obvious in benchmarks, wherein Snapdragon 845-based telephones put up significantly greater scores. The Nova 3 returned 200,950 factors in AnTuTu and 31,354 factors in 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited. Meanwhile, the Snapragon 845-based ZenFone 5Z (Review) posted 2,71861 and 64,593 factors respectively in the identical assessments.
Huawei has launched the Nova 3 in India with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, and there aren’t any variants. Sadly, the Indian mannequin doesn’t get NFC. FM radio can be lacking, for many who care about it. There’s no wi-fi charging, and there’s no waterproof therapy both. You do get an excellent assortment of sensors, GPS, dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth four.2, and USB-OTG.
The Huawei Nova 3 runs on EMUI eight.2, which is predicated on Android eight.1 Oreo
If you favor customized Android skins to inventory Android, then Huawei’s EMUI is without doubt one of the higher ones on the market. Now at model eight.2, it’s based mostly on Android eight.1 Oreo and our unit had the current July 1 safety patch. The interface feels slick and fluid, which is sweet. There are loads of beauty adjustments that you may make with the ‘Theme’ app. Other components such because the navigation pane, app structure, and many others, might be customised. The notch might be ‘hidden’ too. You can join Huawei’s cloud service, which is free and allows you to again up contacts, messages, and name logs.
There are loads of preinstalled apps, from fundamental side-scroller video games to apps like Truecaller and Camera 360. Thankfully, you’ll be able to uninstall all of them if wanted. The Nova 3 additionally boasts of a visible search characteristic, powered by Amazon Assistant. You can entry this by way of the digital camera app by tapping the ‘eye’ icon within the viewfinder, after which it scans no matter you level it at and reveals you a similar or related gadgets on Amazon. It opens the Amazon app when you have it put in, or if not, it simply takes you to Amazon’s Web web page. This additionally works whenever you contact any picture with two fingers within the Gallery app or in Chrome. The accuracy price wasn’t very excessive in our expertise, however there are moments when it labored effectively.
You can use Amazon Assistant to go looking and purchase merchandise
The setup course of for face recognition is just like the way it’s achieved on the iPhone X (Review). We initially discovered it frustratingly inconsistent, however after an OTA replace, the accuracy and pace of authentication improved. The infrared sensor aids the entrance digital camera in low gentle. There’s a voice management characteristic that permits you to ask the cellphone to put calls, however we solely started working about as soon as in 5 tries. We’re unsure why anybody would hassle with this when Google Assistant is current.
Huawei Nova 3 efficiency, cameras, and battery life
The Kirin 970 is likely to be a bit outdated now however it’s nonetheless able to dealing with the fundamentals effectively. Multitasking is easy, apps in cut up display mode work effectively, and 3D video games are dealt with decently. In PUBG and Asphalt 8, gameplay had slight hints of stutter with the settings cranked up all the way in which, so we needed to drop the standard ranges for extra constant body charges. Surprisingly, we didn’t discover this occurring an excessive amount of in Asphalt 9: Legends on the ‘High Quality’ preset.
Huawei claims that the brand new Nova 3 and 3i characteristic the company’s GPU Turbo know-how, which is a low-level software program enhancement designed to spice up graphics efficiency in video games. Our check unit didn’t have this characteristic once we first acquired it, however an OTA replace (v8.2.zero.105) enabled it. A Huawei India consultant instructed Gadgets 360 that GPU Turbo is designed to enhance particular elements of sure video games. For India, the primary supported titles embody PUBG and Mobile Legends, with extra to comply with quickly.
Luckily, we had been enjoying PUBG earlier than the replace, and we had seen intermittent jitter and texture pop-ins on the Ultra graphics preset. After the replace, the frequency of those points was significantly decrease, however we did not actually see any distinction in how the sport appeared.
The Huawei Nova 3 gives good app efficiency however hearts up rapidly
The one trait that we’ve seen about most Kirin SoCs, proper from the times of the Honor 8 (Review), is that they have a tendency to warmth up rapidly. The 970 isn’t any totally different. Besides enjoying video games and taking pictures movies, that are the standard causes of warmth, we seen the realm of the cellphone above the fingerprint sensor getting heat slightly rapidly at occasions, even with easy duties reminiscent of streaming video or downloading apps from the Play Store.
Whether you will have the notch hidden or not, apps usually don’t replenish the complete show, so there’s no subject with the notch obscuring content material. You do have the choice to power sure apps to make use of the complete display house if you wish to. The Nova 3 handles commonest media codecs effectively and 4K movies run simply wonderful too. The mono speaker doesn’t get too loud and sounds a bit tinny at full quantity. The bundled headset isn’t the in-ear kind which suggests it doesn’t dampen ambient noise, and when utilizing it outside, we needed to max out the amount to listen to audio clearly. Bass is weak, even after tweaking the Histen sound results within the Settings app.
The 16-megapixel main rear sensor will get PDAF and a f/1.eight aperture lens, however there’s no optical stabilisation (OIS). Just just like the P20 Pro, the Nova 3 has the power to recognise objects and scenes and can mechanically improve colors and set the publicity accordingly. This didn’t all the time work in our favour because the AI program had an inclination to oversaturate colors like greens, which makes scenes look unnatural at occasions. Thankfully, Huawei has now added an choice within the gallery that permits you to flip off AI enhancement for those who don’t prefer it.
In daylight, panorama pictures have good element and colors, and the digital camera app is ready to detect quite a few scenes and objects effectively. The post-processing algorithms although are too aggressive with sharpening, which regularly finally ends up distorting edges round objects. Macros prove effectively too, however once more, the over-sharpening could make finer particulars in close-ups, reminiscent of flowers, seem blurry. At evening, autofocus is a bit sluggish, and because of the lack of OIS, you might want to be further regular, or photos find yourself having slight movement blur.
There’s a second 24-megapixel monochrome sensor with an f/1.eight aperture lens as effectively, which captures detailed black-and-white pictures. Focusing isn’t as fast as with the principle sensor even beneath good gentle, and this sensor can be used for gauging depth for portrait pictures. In portrait mode, you’ll be able to change the kind of lighting (identical to on the iPhone X), add beautification, and tweak the depth impact. The outcomes are respectable with good edge detection. You can use Aperture mode if you wish to regulate the extent of bokeh.
The Nova 3 has a 24-megapixel selfie digital camera together with a 2-megapixel sensor for depth information. The AI characteristic works for selfies too, and portrait mode is as soon as once more dealt with decently. One cool characteristic that’s unique to the selfie digital camera is the HDR Pro toggle. This prevents vibrant backgrounds from wanting overexposed, and it really works very well. The entrance digital camera additionally shoots 1080p video at 60fps. The cinematic portrait mode permits you to shoot stills with a 21:9 facet ratio however with out AI enhancements.
The cellphone can shoot as much as 4K decision video at 30fps (restricted to 10 minutes per clip) however you don’t get any type of stabilisation, even at decrease resolutions reminiscent of 1080p. The lack of digital stabilisation signifies that movies find yourself shaky for those who’re transferring about. Huawei tells Gadgets 360 that it’s engaged on including this characteristic by way of a software program replace quickly. Video high quality is sweet throughout the day however is fairly common in low gentle. The digital camera additionally has some hassle locking focus whenever you transfer about, forcing you to tap-to-focus once in a while. You may also shoot brief bursts of 480fps slow-motion video, however the high quality is kind of common.
The AR Lens taking pictures mode permits you to mess around with totally different props on your face and the background. Huawei additionally has its personal model of Apple’s Animoji, known as 3D Qmoji. You can select from six totally different characters however you’ll be able to’t create a Qmoji of your self. It works effectively, however and not using a dot projector, it’s nowhere close to as correct as Apple’s implementation.
The 3750mAh battery within the Nova 3 holds up fairly effectively, even with in depth gaming and use of the digital camera. With reasonable utilization, which principally concerned chat apps, music streaming and lightweight gaming, we have been in a position to get practically a full time out of a single cost. Shooting at 4K and enjoying heavy video games reminiscent of Asphalt 9 will clearly make a much bigger dent within the battery, however even then, it is best to be capable of get by way of a complete workday with ease.
The Nova 3 helps quick charging however it’s not quick sufficient. It takes roughly an hour to cost the battery midway, after which one other hour to succeed in 100 %. On the opposite hand, competing applied sciences like Dash Charge and Quick Charge 3.zero provide a lot quicker charging. To save energy, Huawei permits you to change the display decision from Full-HD+ to HD+. This might be achieved manually or you’ll be able to set it to computerized, though with the latter, it’s onerous to inform when and if the decision is definitely altering.
It’s good to see Huawei lastly bringing extra of its merchandise to India, and the Nova 3 is certainly a really fascinating choice. However, along with competitors from different manufacturers, the Nova 3 has to deal with some sibling rivalry first. The Honor 10 (Review) and Honor View 10 (Review) provide very related options because the Nova 3, and are additionally priced a bit under Rs. 35,000. Of these three, the Nova 3 does really feel like your best option although it’s costlier, because it has a extra fashionable design and powerful battery life.
However, with telephones just like the OnePlus 6 (Review) and Asus ZenFone 5Z (Review) round, the Nova 3 doesn’t fairly measure up, which is unlucky. If options like NFC, video stabilisation, and good gaming efficiency matter, you then’d be happier with both of the opposite two. The Huawei Nova 3 is a superbly crafted smartphone with an excellent show and a succesful entrance digital camera, however falls a bit brief in delivering the knockout punch that’s wanted to take down the competitors.
Can Huawei Nova 3 beat OnePlus 6 in India? We mentioned this on Orbital, our weekly know-how podcast, which you’ll subscribe to by way of Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or simply hit the play button under.
Adapted From: Gadgets360