Honor 20 and 20 Pro hands-on review

GSMArena team, 21 May 2019.

Introduction

For the first time, Honor departs from its usual flagship releasing scheme by launching not one but two devices at once. And as per tradition in the Android world, it's a Pro and non-Pro version. Unlike most OEMs, Honor decided to make the size of both handsets identical, with the Pro taking an edge over the vanilla Honor 20 with better under-the-hood features. In this hands-on review, we will be looking at both.

Honor 20 Pro Hands On review

And as it turns out, the Honor 20 Pro is the first in the industry in more than one way. Design-wise, the phone comes with a unique back glass design that Honor likes to call Dynamic Holographic glass back. It consists of several layers achieving that 3D depth effect when viewed from an angle. It does look pretty cool in person and it's a step up from the gradient color designs gaining popularity lately.

Honor 20 Pro

  • Body: 154.6 x 79.97 x 8.44 mm, 182 grams, glass front and back, metal side frame.
  • Screen: 6.26" All-view IPS LCD, 1080 x 2340px resolution; ~412 ppi.
  • Chipset: HiSilicon Kirin 980 CPU; (2x2.6 GHz Cortex-A76 & 2x1.92 GHz Cortex-A76 & 4x1.8 GHz Cortex-A55); Mali-G76 MP10.
  • Memory: 8GB RAM, 256GB built-in storage.
  • OS: Magic 2.1 UI based on Android 9.0 Pie.
  • Rear camera: Main: 48MP, f/1.4, PDAF, EIS, OIS, AIS; Ultra-wide: 16MP, f/2.2, 117 FOV, no AF; Telephoto: 8MP, f/2.4, OIS, 3x optical lossless, 5x hybrid; Macro: 2MP, f/2.4, 4cm fixed focus; LED flash; Laser autofocus; 2160p@30 video recording with all cameras except for the macro.
  • Front camera: 32MP, f/2.0; 1080p@30fps video recording.
  • Battery: 4,000 mAh, 22.5W SuperCharge fast charging.
  • Misc: IR blaster, side-mounted fingerprint reader, punch-hole camera design, Vitual 9.1 Surround Sound (with headphones only), Dynamic Holographic back design coming in Phantom Blue and Phantom Black.
Honor 20 Pro Hands On review

In addition to the ever-changing holographic glass back, the Honor 20 Pro incorporates the industry's first camera with f/1.4 aperture. Moreover, the lens is coupled with a large 48MP stabilized Sony IMX586 sensor capable of taking great nighttime shots.

Honor 20 Hands On  review

Honor 20

  • Body: 154.25 x 73.97 x 7.87 mm, 174 grams, glass front and back, metal side frame.
  • Screen: 6.26" All-view IPS LCD, 1080 x 2340px resolution; ~412 ppi.
  • Chipset: HiSilicon Kirin 980 CPU; (2x2.6 GHz Cortex-A76 & 2x1.92 GHz Cortex-A76 & 4x1.8 GHz Cortex-A55); Mali-G76 MP10.
  • Memory: 6GB RAM, 128GB built-in storage.
  • OS: Magic 2.1 UI based on Android 9.0 Pie.
  • Rear camera: Main: 48MP, f/1.8, PDAF, EIS, AIS; Ultra-wide: 16MP, f/2.2, 117 FOV, no AF; Macro: 2MP, f/2.4, 4cm fixed focus; 2MP depth sensor; LED flash; 2160p@30 video recording with all cameras except for the macro.
  • Front camera: 32MP, f/2.0; 1080p@30fps video recording.
  • Battery: 3,750 mAh, 22.5W SuperCharge fast charging.
  • Misc: IR blaster, side-mounted fingerprint reader, punch-hole camera design, Vitual 9.1 Surround Sound (with headphones only), Dynamic Holographic back design coming in Midnight Black, Sapphire Blue and Icelandic White.

The standard Honor 20, on the other hand, misses on some of the features. Although very minor, some differences could be very impactful to the overall user experience. For instance, the main sensor is still 48MP but with a narrower aperture - f/1.8 and lacks OIS. The telephoto camera is not on the menu as well and is missing the laser autofocus system. The minor difference in battery capacity (4,000 vs 3,750 mAh) will probably go unnoticed.

This is Honor's first European flagship launch and it's betting big on its top-shelf duo. Before, China was the first one to get Honor's latest and greatest and the Honor View series are historically better equipped. This year, Honor is doing things the other way around so let's see if it will pay off.