A smartphone for all seasons

Jinoy Jose P | Updated on August 30, 2018 Published on August 29, 2018

Huawei’s Nova3 blends great display with a seamless performance and strong hardware

You can love Huawei or hate it; but you can’t ignore the world’s second largest smartphone company and its products for their sheer spread and style. Huawei Nova3, the latest from the Chinese electronics behemoth, comes with a shining list of specs that can warm the cockles of every gadget enthusiast’s heart.

The 6.3-inch phone has a width of 73.7 mm and height of 157 mm. The display is wide and long enough, and the phone weighs as much as most flagships do. And this is a strong phone. You may merrily ignore all the talk about the Nova3 not having Gorilla Glass and being fragile. Full disclosure: The phone fell thrice from my pocket (with the Huawei-supplied back cover on) and it survived without any scratches or dents.

The Nova3 comes in four colours: Iris Purple, Airy Blue, Black Red and Primrose Gold, as Huawei has named them. The IPS display is crisp and blemishless, and supports a resolution of FHD+ 2340 x 1080 with an impressive 409 PPI (pixel density). The Nova3 renders colours diligently and without much glaring or snaps even when you run 4K content on it. The edges are well carved out and angle views are uncompromising, allowing you full view of the content even from the most difficult angle. The fingerprint sensor is placed on the back and can be easily accessed.

The Nova3 runs on Android 8.1 and is powered by Huawei’s resident processor, the Kirin 970, which enables ultra-fast processing, superior artificial intelligence capabilities, HD effects and high battery life. The review unit has a 6 GB RAM and an internal storage of 128 GB. Undoubtedly, Kirin 970’s prowess is in display while you’re multitasking with the phone, or while playing heavy games. The phone didn’t hang even once while we used it. All the sensors work just fine.

The phone boasts a four-camera squadron — the rear has a 24 MP (mono) plus 16 MP (colour) duo with f/1.8 aperture. The rear camera unit supports autofocus (deep focus, phase focus, contrast focus). The AI-powered camera allows for shooting images in SLR quality RAW format, which can come quite handy for professional photographers. The PRO mode is also impressive as it lets users fiddle with several options for better images. The AI does a good job at the outset, but if you are a savvy shooter, you may rely on the PRO mode for crisp and rich images. AI is more for the dilettante.

The front camera has a 24 MP (colour) + 2 MP (colour) unit, which supports f/2.0 aperture and fixed focal length. The selfie dashboard has several options, but those are meant mostly for the very young users. Among the fancy features, the 3D Qmoji looks cute and worth trying if you have a lot of time at hand. This basically means animating your favourite emoji with your facial expressions, movements and voice.

The Nova3’s video playback is as promised in the promotional literature, and audio faculties are above average but not great in comparison with its peers such as, yes, the OnePlus 6. The 3,750 mAh battery gets tired at the end of the day but lasts long enough thanks to efficient power management from the Kirin 970 processor. The phone has a Type C charging slot.

The Nova3 supports Amazon’s Assistant, which helps you shop by long-pressing on a photo of something you want to buy. Another interesting feature is the face-unlock facility. This is super efficient and works hassle-free even in low-light conditions. It worked well even inside a movie hall.

Now, the only grievance we have about the phone is the fact that in India, Huawei is selling an unlocked version of it, which hampers certain apps from offering optimal performance courtesy potential vulnerabilities. Netflix, for instance, won’t support its app on Nova3. But for the fan, that’s not a major exception as most apps seem to be in sync with the system.

If you want a power-packed phone with bigger and better display that can double up as an entertainer and business phone, Huawei Nova3 is recommended for you. It ticks most demands.

Price: ₹34,999

Pros: Superb display, strong body, seamless performance, SLR-quality camera performance

Cons: Audio lacks depth, slippery body, battery drains faster during high usage

Published on August 29, 2018

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