Honor 7 Lite (5c) review: Lite and dark

GSMArena team, 26 July 2016.

Display

The Honor 7 Lite (5c) has a 5.2" IPS LCD screen of 1080p resolution. On paper, it's the same as the P9 lite screen. It turns out, however, that this is not the case.

The screen offers decent image quality, but it's let down by contrast - it's much lower than that of the P9 lite's screen. It gets even poorer when you view the screen at an angle too.

Huawei Honor 7 Lite (5c) review

The Honor 7 screen offers average brightness, somewhat below the P9 lite. However, its black levels are higher, which has a negative impact on contrast and you can really see black backgrounds in apps glow in the dark.

Display test 100% brightness
Black, cd/m2 White, cd/m2 Contrast ratio
Huawei Honor 7 Lite (5c) 0.57 418 733
Huawei P9 Lite 0.42 497 1192
Lenovo Vibe K5 Plus 0.44 441 998
Xiaomi Mi 4S 0.49 475 975
Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) 0.00 421
Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016) max auto 0.00 601
LG Nexus 5X 0.30 455 1542
Huawei Honor 7 0.32 450 1398
HTC One A9 - 366
Huawei P8 0.38 584 1516
Sony Xperia M5 0.63 527 839

The sunlight legibility takes a small hit compared to the Huawei P9 lite, but it's not as big as the difference in contrast suggests. It tops last year's Huawei P8 (both the flagship and the lite version) and some of the competition, matching most others in its price bracket.

Sunlight contrast ratio

  • Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+
    4.615
  • Samsung Galaxy S7 edge
    4.439
  • OnePlus 3
    4.424
  • Samsung Galaxy S7
    4.376
  • HTC One A9
    4.274
  • Samsung Galaxy A3
    4.241
  • Samsung Galaxy S6 edge
    4.124
  • Samsung Galaxy Note5
    4.09
  • Huawei Nexus 6P
    4.019
  • Vivo Xplay5 Elite
    3.983
  • OnePlus X
    3.983
  • Oppo R7s
    3.964
  • Huawei P9 Plus
    3.956
  • Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016)
    3.918
  • Samsung Galaxy A5
    3.895
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 outdoor
    3.879
  • Samsung Galaxy J2 outdoor
    3.873
  • Samsung Galaxy A8
    3.859
  • Apple iPhone 6
    3.838
  • Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016)
    3.817
  • Motorola Moto X (2014)
    3.816
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 (2016) outdoor mode
    3.802
  • Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016)
    3.789
  • Apple iPhone 6s
    3.783
  • Meizu Pro 5
    3.781
  • Microsoft Lumia 650
    3.772
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 (2016)
    3.756
  • Oppo F1 Plus
    3.709
  • Vivo X5Pro
    3.706
  • Apple iPhone SE
    3.681
  • Samsung Galaxy A7
    3.679
  • Meizu PRO 6
    3.659
  • BlackBerry Priv
    3.645
  • Apple iPhone 6s Plus
    3.53
  • Samsung Galaxy J3 (2016) outdoor mode
    3.523
  • Samsung Galaxy J3 (2016)
    3.523
  • Acer Jade Primo
    3.521
  • Microsoft Lumia 950
    3.512
  • Oppo R7 Plus
    3.499
  • Samsung Galaxy J7
    3.422
  • Meizu MX5
    3.416
  • Oppo R7
    3.32
  • Samsung Galaxy J2
    3.235
  • Sony Xperia X Performance
    3.234
  • Motorola Moto X Play
    3.222
  • Huawei P9
    3.195
  • Lenovo Vibe Shot
    3.113
  • Motorola Moto X Force
    3.105
  • LG Nexus 5X
    3.092
  • Huawei Mate S
    3.073
  • Microsoft Lumia 640 XL
    3.065
  • Apple iPhone 6 Plus
    3.023
  • Sony Xperia X
    2.989
  • Samsung Galaxy Note
    2.97
  • Huawei Mate 8
    2.949
  • Sony Xperia XA Ultra
    2.906
  • LG G5
    2.905
  • HTC One S
    2.901
  • Sony Xperia Z5
    2.876
  • Microsoft Lumia 550
    2.851
  • Sony Xperia Z5 compact
    2.784
  • LG V10
    2.744
  • Xiaomi Redmi 3
    2.735
  • Sony Xperia M5
    2.69
  • Huawei P9 Lite
    2.679
  • Vivo V3Max
    2.659
  • Xiaomi Mi 4i
    2.641
  • Sony Xperia XA
    2.609
  • Xiaomi Mi 4c
    2.574
  • LeEco Le Max 2
    2.567
  • Microsoft Lumia 640
    2.563
  • Lenovo Moto G4
    2.544
  • Oppo F1
    2.528
  • Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
    2.525
  • Huawei Honor 7 Lite (5c)
    2.506
  • Sony Xperia M4 Aqua
    2.503
  • Motorola Moto G
    2.477
  • Lenovo Vibe K5 Plus
    2.473
  • Huawei G8
    2.471
  • Sony Xperia Z
    2.462
  • Huawei Honor 7
    2.406
  • Sony Xperia E5
    2.386
  • ZUK Z1 by Lenovo
    2.382
  • HTC 10
    2.378
  • Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016)
    2.378
  • HTC One E9+
    2.305
  • Alcatel One Touch Hero
    2.272
  • Lenovo Vibe K4 Note
    2.254
  • Sony Xperia C5 Ultra
    2.253
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 (MediaTek)
    2.249
  • Sony Xperia C4 Dual
    2.235
  • Motorola Moto G (2014)
    2.233
  • LG Nexus 5
    2.228
  • Huawei P8
    2.196
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 2
    2.166
  • OnePlus Two
    2.165
  • HTC One X
    2.158
  • LG Aka
    2.145
  • Archos 50 Diamond
    2.134
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note
    2.119
  • Acer Liquid X2
    2.084
  • Huawei P8lite
    2.078
  • Moto G 3rd gen max manual
    2.026
  • Xiaomi Mi Max
    1.996
  • Sony Xperia E4g
    1.972
  • OnePlus One
    1.961
  • Meizu m3 note
    1.923
  • BlackBerry Leap
    1.892
  • Meizu m2 note
    1.892
  • HTC Butterfly
    1.873
  • ZTE Nubia Z9 mini
    1.759
  • Sony Xperia U
    1.758
  • Asus Zenfone Selfie
    1.68
  • Motorola Moto E (2nd Gen)
    1.675
  • ZTE Nubia Z9
    1.659
  • Motorola Moto E
    1.545
  • Sony Xperia M
    1.473
  • Xiaomi Redmi 2
    1.311
  • Sony Xperia C
    1.283
  • Meizu MX
    1.221
  • Sony Xperia E
    1.215

On the plus side, the color rendering is surprisingly good. The default color mode has the white balance a little too cool, but it offers an average deltaE of 6.7 and a maximum of 12.9. These are better than the defaults on the P9 lite.

The screen can do better when you switch it to Warm mode. The average falls to 5.3 and the maximum to 9.6, comparable to the Xiaomi Redmi 4s and Lenovo Vibe K5 Plus.

This is a very good result for the price. You have a fine-grained manual setting too, so you can get a color balance that looks best to you (in case Warm doesn't quite cut it).

Connectivity

The Huawei Honor 7 Lite (5c) is a dual-SIM phone with LTE connectivity. It's Cat. 4 (150Mbps down, 50Mbps up) instead of Cat. 6, but that won't make much of a difference on most carriers.

The phone gets solid reception thanks to its dual antenna system. It automatically switches between the two to reliably hold on to signal.

Local connectivity includes Wi-Fi b/g/n, without 5GHz or ac support. We don't miss ac as much as the 5GHz as apartment buildings often have a congested 2.4GHz band, which can lead to poor connectivity.

Huawei Honor 7 Lite (5c) review

Bluetooth 4.1 with Low Energy and NFC are also on board, there's even an FM radio.

There's a microUSB 2.0 port, but that's only for charging and data transfers to a computer. USB OTG is not supported and neither is wired TV out.

Battery

The Honor 7 Lite (5c) has a 3,000mAh battery, great for a 5" screen. Better still, its Kirin 650 chipset is built on an efficient 16nm process, just like flagship chipsets so its power efficiency should be great.

And indeed, an Endurance rating of 75 hours is great at such an affordable price point. It drops a few hours if you use two SIMs, but you can still get up to three days between charges with moderate usage.

Talk time has improved compared to the Huawei P9 lite (the Honor 7 Lite has a different modem), though the other two ratings have taken a hit. We guess that it's the different screen to blame for losing two hours of web browsing and one of video playback. Even so it remains competitive against midrange 5-inchers, including ones in a higher price bracket.

Huawei Honor 7 Lite (5c) review

The battery testing procedure is described in detail in case you're interested in the nitty-gritties. You can also check out our complete battery test table, where you can see how all of the smartphones we've tested will compare under your own typical use.

Battery Manager is part of the Phone Manager and includes a selection of three power plans with a varying degree of limiting certain phone features. From here you can also control which apps can remain active after you send the phone to sleep and an estimate of how long the phone is expected to last in each mode.

The most frugal Ultra power saving mode essentially turns the Honor 7 Lite into a feature phone (but more than doubles the expected battery life).

Battery manager - Honor 7 Lite review Battery manager - Honor 7 Lite review Battery manager - Honor 7 Lite review Battery manager - Honor 7 Lite review
Battery manager