Huawei Nova 8i review: bittersweet user experience
“It may not be a cell phone for the different user profiles, but whoever manages to tailor it will, of course, feel that their investment will have been worth it”
Quality screen and good size
Featured fast charge
The AppGallery still does not give a good experience
After testing the Nova 8, it’s time to get your first impressions of the Huawei Nova 8i, a cell phone that has reduced specifications compared to its “older brother”, but does not disappoint. The following review presents both your highlights and where you can improve.
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For starters, the Nova 8i retains its sleek, modern design. On its back, in addition to a finish that gives the sensation of being metallic, stands out the circular module that houses the rear optics composed of a 64 MP main sensor, 8 MP ultra-wide angle, 2 MP macro and a depth sensor of 2 MP.
On the right side there are the volume and power buttons (the latter integrates the sensor that allows the unit to be unlocked by means of the fingerprint), while on the upper part the Jack 3.5mm headphone jack. The audio channel is on the bottom, as is the USB-C charging port and the slot for the mobile data card.
Already in the hands, the cell phone feels comfortable and without the fear that it will slip easily. The curved edges on its rear also add to that feel. The firm includes a transparent casing for those who want to give the phone extra protection against accidental drops (also add some simple headphones).
The display of the Nova 8i has really narrow borders, which makes the still image or video stretch almost the entire front space. It is only interrupted by the notch that houses the camera for selfies 16 MP, which is located in the upper left and is not as small as in others smartphones.
As for the resolution of the 6.67-inch screen, it is Full HD + (2,376 x 1,080 pixels), which translates into graphics with a good display of colors and an acceptable level of contrast, both in still images and in video.
Huawei does not specify its refresh rate nor is there any parameter in the configuration to modify it, so it may be only 60 Hz, that is, the mobile updates its image about 60 times in a second.
For greater eye protection, the firm indicates that it incorporated the enhanced Eye Comfort function, capable of filtering out harmful blue lights and minimizing yellow discoloration.
When watching a series, people can expect a satisfactory experience, for which it is also necessary that they have an internet connection that allows them to reproduce contained in streaming without interruptions. Despite the fact that the Nova 8i only integrates one audio channel, the sound is powerful and clear.
Performance and autonomy
The “younger brother” of the Nova 8 considers a 4,300 mAh battery that, in moderate use, could deliver a range of up to two days. Its fast charge is 66 watts, so the power source goes from 15 to 100 percent of its capacity in about 40 minutes, according to the tests carried out.
It is still interesting that Huawei maintains its SuperCharge function in its mid-range devices, which also means that the same charger can be used both in laptops and in some compatible cell phones of the firm.
With the Snapdragon 662 processor – also seen in computers like the new Motorola Defy and the Poco M3— and 6 GB RAM, the Nova 8i promises to answer the different demands when it comes to applications. These run quickly, regardless of whether they are for productivity or entertainment.
The internal storage is not small either: there are 128 GB, enough to download the preferred content and the one that is generated through the cameras of the smartphone.
Whoever writes these lines still does not find a completely satisfactory experience in Huawei cell phones. For example, downloading your favorite applications, if they are available, implies doing it not from the official Huawei store, AppGallery, but from an external manager such as APKPure.
The fact that the manufacturer cannot access Google Mobile Services and that platforms such as Netflix, Facebook, Instagram or Uber are not yet found directly, means that people will have certain complications to have a phone to suit them, with the apps they want and not the ones they can download.
A clear example to summarize this situation. Once HBO Max is downloaded from APKPure – running it from the Nova 8i’s mobile browser is a nightmare – when you want to open it, the following message is displayed: “HBO Max will not run without Google Play services, which are not compatible with your device ”. The same goes for Uber.
Is it a lot of dependence on Google and the lack of interest of developers to make their applications compatible with Huawei’s services? Maybe yes.
Neither the Nova 8i nor all the recent phones that integrate Huawei’s EMUI layer are cell phones that lack quality, however, they are still not enough to offer that intuitive experience to which Google’s mobile operating system may have already accustomed them: Android.
Screen, fast charging and performance are some of the most attractive specifications in the Nova 8i, in addition to its price: 8,500 pesos for the Mexican market (around $ 413 dollars for a better reference).
It may not be a smartphone for the different user profiles, especially due to the fact that it has to do with the availability of the apps, again. Whoever manages to tailor it will, of course, feel that their investment will have been worth it.