Review : Honor Play

Display  

The Honor Play has a 6.3-inch notched IPS LCD display with 2340×1080 pixels. The notch itself is smaller compared to the iPhone X.

Colors on the screen is looking good with vivid colors and it has the “eye comfort” feature as well. Essentially, it’s a blue light filter technology.

You can also change the screen’s resolution like what we’ve seen in Samsung Galaxy smartphones However, being a 1080p display, the Honor Play can only toggle between 720p and 1080p. There’s also an option to have the software to automatically switch between 1080p and 720p to maximize battery life.

Another neat feature that it has is the smart rotate. The auto rotation follows the orientation of my face. Has a bit of a delay but works pretty well.

Camera

Despite being a “gaming phone”, the Honor Play does come with some of the AI camera features as found in other Honor/Huawei smartphones. Here is the list of camera specs on the Honor Play:

 Dual rear-facing cameras

16MP main camera with f/2.2 lens; PDAF 2MP secondary camera as depth sensor

Selfie camera

16MP with f/2.0 lens

The cameras are also the main differentiation between it’s similarly-specced brothers – the Honor 10 and Honor View 10.

Comparing the cameras of these 3 smartphones on paper, it seems like the Honor Play has the worst rear-facing cameras.

 

Performance & Gaming

The Honor Play comes packed with HiSilicon Kirin 970 SoC that made its first debut on the Huawei Mate 10 since late November 2017.

Here is the full list of specs of the Honor Play.

  • 3-inch IPS LCD display with 2340×1080 pixels in resolution
  • HiSilicon Kirin 970 chipset
  • Octa-core processor with 4×2.4GHz Cortex-A73 + 4×1.8GHz Cortex-A53
  • Mali-G72 MP12 with 12 GPU cores
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64GB storage
  • 3,750mAh battery

Battery & Charger

With the 3,750mAh battery in the Honor Play, we expect longer battery life in our test. And there’s no surprise either.

In our battery test, the Honor Play’s battery life is pretty much in line with the Huawei P20 that has a 3,400mAh battery

Also, since the Honor Play does have a switch to change to 720p, we tried that as well and we got about 1.5 hours of extra battery life. But how about the charger?

The Honor Play does have some compromises – particularly the charger.

Instead of having some fancy fast charging like the P20, the Honor Play only comes with Huawei Quick Charge charger – which can output 5V 2A or 9V 2A.

In our charging test, we compared the Huawei Quick Charge’s 9V 2A with another standard 5V 2A charger. The Huawei Quick Charge is not the best of what Huawei/Honor has in their arsenal, but it’s still faster than the commonly-found 5V 2A charger. Wrapping up the Honor Play review

Honestly speaking, the Honor Play is not really a special smartphone, per se. It’s more of a rebrand of their existing Honor 10 (and Honor View10 for that matter) with some tweaks, presumably to target towards the upcoming “gaming smartphone” market and hence the name.

The Honor Play is, honestly, a great gaming smartphone in terms of raw performance for its price. The camera on the Honor Play just isn’t my cup of tea, with its camera algorithms oversaturating the pictures and also losing details with over-brightening of shadows.

And there’s a blue tint to the patch of green grass too. While we think that the Honor Play is a great gaming smartphone for its price of only RS 19,999. It’s not really got for any other thing. If you do more than just gaming on your smartphone, perhaps consider the Honor 10, the ASUS ZenFone 5z, or the upcoming ROG Phone. Or even the Mi A2.  

REVIEW OVERVIEW

Design: 8

Software: 7

Connectivity and ports: 8

Screen: 8

Specifications: 8

Camera: 5

Battery and charger: 7

Value: 8

 SUMMARY

The Honor Play is an honestly good smartphone, but it might be confusing for the users since it’s pretty similar to the Honor 10 and Honor View10. The Honor Play is obviously advertised as a gaming smartphone but lacks of any gaming-specific smartphone features. Despite everything negative, the Honor Play gets a Bronze silver. It does get its job done as a pure gaming phone.