Let’s be honest, there’s typically little be excited about when a new Honor smartphone is unveiled. The story is typically the same, a low-end or mid-range device at a decent price point, but there’s usually a compromise or two that you’ll have to live with. With the Honor View 20, the story is a bit different.
What you’re looking at here is a true flagship smartphone with all the bells and whistles. It has more power than most devices from 2018, enough RAM to satisfy the heaviest multitaskers, a jaw-dropping design, respectable cameras and an unmistakable hole cut out of its display for its front-facing camera instead of those pesky notches that were pushed on us last year. And the best part of all of that is the price. In most markets, this phone is roughly the same price as the OnePlus 6T.
But we know that most of you are most interested in that hole in the View 20’s display since the hole-punch looks like it will be replacing the notch in 2019. The hole punch cutout for the front-facing camera is looking to solve the same problem as the notch did, finding a way to maximize screen to body ratio while still keeping the front-facing camera. To do this, Honor has cut a 4.5mm hole into the LCD panel which translates into a 91.8% screen-to-body ratio.
As you might imagine, the notification icons at the top are pushed over to make room for the camera cutout, but that’s really the extent of the obtrusion. The hole essentially disappears below your thumb when playing games in full-screen mode and it’s barely noticeable when watching video. In the software, honor is taking the same approach has most manufacturers have with the notch, allowing you to black-out the notification bar so that the hole essentially disappear.
I’m not sure yet if the hole-punch in the display is any better than the water-drop notch of the OnePlus 6T, but it is more aesthetically pleasing and its placement is slightly better.
The phone’s unique design features aren’t just limited to the hole in the display. Flipping the View 20 over to the back reveals an impressive glass finish. Using nano-optical lithography, the Honor View 20 has a one of a kind chevron pattern which shifts with the light. We’ve seen similar color shifting glass backed smartphones before from HTC, but the View 20 definitely takes things to the next level.
The 2.5D glass on the front and back of the phone seamlessly fade into the metal frame of the device which gives the View 20 a premium feel, unlike many phones offered at the same price point.
On paper, the Honor View 20 is just as good as most 2018 flagship devices that sell in the $850 to $1,000 range, but it’s honestly the OnePlus 6T competitor that we’ve been so desperately waiting for since the View 20 and the latest device from OnePlus can basically be purchased for the same price.