Every cycle Huawei launches a viable competition to reigning OnePlus flagship, and its first 6T challenger this year will be the Honor View 20. The new debutant is quite a package – It’s the first phone in India with an in-display selfie camera or punch-hole display, It employs the mighty 7nm Kirin 980 octa-core chipset, a big camera sensor, has a flashy laser etched finish, and it still retains an audio jack. (Honor View 20 Review हिंदी में पढ़िए)

So, we were naturally quite excited to test if the circular notch or the punch hole is an improvement over the regular broad or droplet notch, and to see if Huawei finally has a complete mid-range phone. So, let’s dive deeper and share our experience in our Honor View 20 review.

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Honor View 20 Price and Specifications

Model Honor View 20
Display 6.4 inches, 1080 x 2310 pixels, 19:5:9 aspect ratio
Processor 2.6 GHz, Octa Core, HiSilicon Kirin 980 Processor
RAM + Internal Storage 6/8GB + 128/256GB internal storage
Expandable Memory Not supported
Software Android 8.1 (Oreo) with EMUI skin
Selfie Camera 4.5mm 25 MP  (f / 2.0 aperture)
Rear Camera 48 MP Camera with autofocus (f/1.8 aperture) + TOF stereo deep
Battery 4000 mAh, Li-ion Battery
SIM Dual Card Dual Standby Single Pass
Connectivity GPRS 4G VoLTE (Supports Reliance Jio), Wifi, with wifi-hotspot
Bluetooth v5.0 and USB Type-C (v2.0)
Sensors Light sensor, Proximity sensor, Accelerometer, Compass
Colors Sapphire Blue, Midnight Black, and Phantom Blue
Honor View 20 Price in India Rs. 37,999( 6GB+128GB Internal)/ Rs. 45,999 (8GB+ 256GB Internal)

What’s in Honor View 20 Box?

  • Handset
  • Transparent protective case cover
  • Pre-installed screen protector
  • Fast charging adaptor and USB Type-C cable
  • Sim ejector tool and documentation

Honor View 20 Review: Design and Build

Most phones we have been testing for the last few months were more or less similar from the front. Which is why the punch-hole camera on the View 20 strikes as something novel, at least for now.

We kind of like it too. The display looks more seamless, bezels are narrow, you get relatively more useable status bar area, and for anyone who is still averse to notch, it should be easier to ignore that little unobtrusive hole in the corner – a win-win situation for everyone.

To spice things up on the rear, Huawei uses a laser etched coating that gleams in a V- pattern when light falls at it from an angle. This looks cool but is understandably a bit flashy to suit everyone’s taste. The case cover bundled in the box is of reasonable quality, and it would be great if Huawei could also offer some customized options just as OnePlus does.

The audio jack and IR blaster are present up top. At the bottom, there is a USB Type-C port, and a mono speaker. The fingerprint sensor on the rear and the power and volume keys on the right edge are all easily accessible.

Honor View 20 Review: Display Quality

Huawei still reserves AMOLED screens for its high-end flagships (Mate-series and Magic), and the Honor View 20 gets a 6.4-inch IPS LCD panel. Huawei is using a good quality panel here, but default color calibration needs some adjustment. The color temperature is cool by default, but you can easily change that from display settings. Things are much better once you switch to the ‘normal’ profile – as we have also observed on other Honor or Huawei phones.

Colors are punchy and contrast is pretty high. Outdoor visibility is fine, but not stellar. You get an option to hide the camera cut-out, but we felt perfectly at home with the punch hole as is.

Honor View 20 Review: Performance and Software

Honor View 20 is powered by Huawei’s latest 7nm Kirin 980 chipset, which, at the time of writing, is currently the most powerful smartphone chipsets in India. There is ample RAM (6GB) even on the base variant, and going by the Androbench score, Huawei is probably using UFS 2.1 storage (128GB). Then there is GPU 2.0 that can boost performance in select gaming titles (PUBG being one of them).

Needless to say, you won’t face any issues with day-to-day usage. The gaming experience was fabulous too.

Also Read: 10 Best OnePlus 6T Alternatives You Can Buy In India

The Android Pie-based software on the Honor View 20 is Magic UI. In case you are wondering how Magic UI is different than EMUI, it’s not. This is more of UI rebranding than a redesign.

As EMUI, the Magic UI is rich in features and has a tonne of handy customization options. That is, if you don’t like it, there’s a lot you can do about it. On the Honor View 20, we found the software to be more stable than on affordable Huawei phones. Honor View 20 supports HD streaming on Netflix and Amazon Prime.

The IR blaster on View 20 works very well. And so do Face Unlock and Fingerprint reader. Honor View 20 has dual VoLTE support and call quality was excellent in our area.

Honor View 20 Review: Camera performance

Huawei’s View 20 is a camera-centric phone. On the rear, you get a 48MP primary sensor and a 3D ToF sensor. As against a regular RGB depth sensor, the 3D ToF sensor maps surroundings using IR laser, but what it essentially does is depth sensing. Its other application is a body ‘shaping’ toggle accessible under portrait mode alongside beautify, but that’s more of a gimmick.

By default, the camera outputs 12MP shots but you can very well opt for the full 48MP resolution. You’ll still get the best results with 12MP shots.

Images we clicked in daylight turned out really good.

Lowlight shots are pretty good too, but the software tends to overexpose and oversharpen, at times resulting in an unnatural cast.

Does the View 20 camera perform better than OnePlus 6T? Well, we are yet to test them side by side, but the two should be close.

There are numerous shooting modes on the phone, and the three we used very often were HDR, Night Mode, and the Pro mode. The Night Mode shoots and combines images at different exposures and can smartly negate handshake, thus resulting in crisp night shots.

Perhaps the 3D ToF sensor does make a difference since the portrait mode on the View 20 is definitely better than any other Honor phone we have tested in the last year.

Portrait mode indoors

The 25MP selfie camera can shoot detailed selfies. The video recording turned out to be just average.

Honor View 20 Review: Battery and Audio

The View 20 has a 4000mAh battery and 22.5W SuperCharge that charge it up to 59% in just 30 minutes. This makes it profoundly convenient and even faster than OnePlus’s warp charge.

The audio output via Headphones and via mono speakers at the bottom is excellent, which makes Honor View 20 well suited for audiophiles.

Also Read: Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 vs Snapdragon 845 – What’s Different?

Honor View 20 Review: Verdict, Pros, and Cons

The Honor View 20 turned out to be an impressive offering and is perhaps the closed OnePlus 6T competitor. The new circular notch makes it distinct, the Kirin 980 is impressively powerful, the camera performance is one of the bests in its class, and it retains the audio jack.

The EMUI Magic UI might not count as a strong point, but it runs well on the View 20 and there isn’t much reason to detest it anymore.

On the downside, there is no expandable storage, the laser etched finish is a bit flashy, and an AMOLED panel would have been more like it – but these are minor peeve points and don’t bog down the overall experience.

Pros

  • Trendy design
  • Excellent performance
  • Long lasting battery and fast charging
  • Camera performance

Cons

  • No MicroSD card slot
  • No AMOLED display

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