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Honor 8X first impressions: Premium looks, AI cameras come to mid-range segment

Everything you need to know about the new Honor 8X.
Everything you need to know about the new Honor 8X. (Honor)

Honor 8X launched in India with dual AI cameras and mid-range specifications. Let’s take a closer look at the new Honor phone.

Trust Honor to give you good looking phones, be it a premium Honor 10 or budget Honor 9N. Its latest Honor 8X is no exception either. Sporting a glass-metal-glass body, Honor 8X is a new mid-range smartphone which takes on Xiaomi's Redmi Note 5, Note 5 Pro and Realme 2 Pro.

Looks, however, is not the only highlight of the new Honor phone. The smartphone comes with Artificial Intelligence-driven dual-cameras, something that has remained exclusive to upper tier of mid-range segment and premium phones. Honor 8X doesn't look inferior in terms of specifications either - Kirin 710 processor and up to 6GB of RAM. Honor 8X will be available at a starting price of 14,999 from October 24.

We spent some time with Honor's latest smartphone ahead of the launch. Here are our first impressions.

As implied earlier, Honor 8X is indeed a good looking phone sporting a glass back panel. The rear is a 2.5D double texture aurora glass body with grating effect. The left hand side has dual camera lenses, flash, "AI Camera" and Honor branding. There's a fingerprint sensor at the top center.

You will have to squint to notice the double texture. In my opinion, it looks a bit odd as well. Honor 8X, just like most of the glass back phones, is a fingerprint magnet and prone to smudges.

Volume and power buttons located on the right edge are well within the reach. The left edge houses the full slot for dual SIM and microSD. While the top is barren, the base is home to microUSB port, speaker grille and 3.5mm headphone jack. The phone feels light and comfortable to hold.

But there's more to design. Honor 8X is a large-screen phone. Sporting a 6.5-inch display on the front, it has a notch on the top and ultra slim bezel at the base. The phone offers a whopping 91% screen-to-body ratio and an aspect ratio of 19.5:9. While we liked the implementation of edge-to-edge screen on a mid-range phone, the display quality at full HD+ resolution is not going win your hearts.

It felt little underwhelming during our brief usage. It's slightly reflective and quite difficult to use under the sunlight. Though there are software-based built-in features (colour temperature, mode, and blue light filter) to change the display tone. We mostly used the default Vivid mode.

Honor comes with 2.5D double texture aurora glass body with grating effect.
Honor comes with 2.5D double texture aurora glass body with grating effect. (Honor)

Now let's talk about the highlight of the phone, AI dual-cameras. Honor 8X sports 20-megapixel and 2-megapixel rear cameras with f/1.8 aperture. The phone uses machine learning algorithms to optimise the settings for different situations. The front-facing 16-megapixel camera takes satisfactory selfies. Here are a few photos taken from Honor 8X in different modes.

A comparison between non AI (top) and AI (bottom) modes
A comparison between non AI (top) and AI (bottom) modes (HT Photo)
Notice the bumped up contrast ratio after switching on the AI mode.
Notice the bumped up contrast ratio after switching on the AI mode. (HT Photo)

Honor 8X looks like a promising phone. With Kirin 710 processor and up to 6GB of RAM, Honor 8X takes on Xiaomi Redmi Note 5, the most popular mid-range smartphone. We will find out more about the performance and overall experience in our detailed review. Until then stay tuned. 

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