This is the Honor 70, one of the newest phones from Honor for this year. At a price of around 549 EUR, it’s got its crosshairs set on other “affordable flagship” phones like the Google Pixel 7, Samsung Galaxy S21 FE, and the iPhone 14 to name a few. While it does come with some rather interesting approaches to hardware as well as tried-and-tested custom Android software, is it enough to warrant the asking price? Let’s take a look.
Design and Display
For the past few years, Honor’s been carving out a name for itself since stepping out from under Huawei’s shadow, and the Honor 70 (while striving to be different) does retain some familiar design traits from the latter company. In terms of looks, the phone comes with a sleek outer design which is made out of glass and plastic, but manages to look rather premium, especially with the curved display. There’s a matte gradient design at the back, which looks really nice when light hits it at just the right angle.
The egdes of the phone are made of plastic and while they do have a somewhat metallic finish, they are plain polycarbonate through and through. With that said, there are some considerations to be made about the design of the phone, one of them being the curved display which is certainly an acquired taste. The same can be said for the camera bumps on the rear panel, which are enormous.
The Honor 70 features a 6.67 inch AMOLED screen with a 120 Hertz refresh rate, with a 1080 by 2400 pixel resolution. It’s a very vibrant display, and is fast and responsive. It also comes with an optical fingerprint scanner, which works rather nicely. It also comes with face unlock which is a nice back-up option in case you’re not able to scan your fingerprint for whatever reason.
A couple of things to take note of however is that there is no IP68 rating on this phone, and there’s no Gorilla Glass protection for the screen, which is a bit disappointing given its price. You’ll have to invest in a case and screen protector for the phone if you wish to keep it looking new in the long run.
Internal Specs, Software and Usage
Inside the phone is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 778+ SoC, partnered with 256 GB of internal storage and 8 GB of RAM. In terms of raw performance, the chipset is going to be great for most games – I was able to run Grid AutoSport on this phone for example, and it was able to handle the game nicely without any lags or app crashes.
If you’re planning on using this phone for a lot of gaming, then it is going to be able to handle a ton of games from the Google Play Store. One observation I did make is that it doesn’t really get too hot while gaming, which makes it ideal for prolonged gaming sessions. Even for basic day-to-day tasks, the Honor 70 will be a solid performer – overall, if you’re a moderate or casual user, then it’s going to be a very zippy experience for you.
Now, it does come with Android 12 coupled with a layer of Magic UI, which is Honor’s custom Android skin. If you have used a Huawei phone before with EMUI, then Magic UI is going to be very similar, with a lot of the same features. While I do get that Honor wants to create a name for itself and separate its branding from Huawei, it should be noted that you’ll see a lot of similarities between Magic UI and EMUI.
If you are after a phone with a stock Android experience, then this might not be the phone to go with as there are a lot of extra apps that come pre-installed with the smartphone, although thankfully a lot of them can be removed from the get-go. On the other hand however, you do get some customizability with Magic UI – everything from your icons, your theme packs and wallpapers and such will be free to tinker with, and if you’re someone who’s into customizing their smartphone, or maybe you’ve used a lot of and Huawei phones before, then this will be familiar in terms of overall usage.
Camera and Battery
As for cameras, the phone comes with a 54MP main camera, 50MP ultrawide lens, 2MP depth sensor, and a 32MP front-facing camera. I found the cameras on the Honor 70 to be generally impressive, and I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of photos that I was able to get on this phone. We actually have a full-on camera review on our YouTube channel which you can check out for more detailed samples.
In general, shots on the main sensor look pretty good albeit with some saturation to them. Portrait shots on the selfie camera look good, with decent edge detection and background blur. The same can be said for night mode which gives satisfying results, and you’ll get a decent amount of detail and exposure in nighttime shots. With that said however, camera performance will be a very subjective matter, but overall I think it’s safe to say that you’ll get decent photos from the cameras on the Honor 70.
The phone can record a maximum of 4K resolution videos at 30 frames per second, which isn’t too bad although we’d have preferred a 60fps option. One thing to note is that sometimes colors in clips tend to look washed out, especially if you are shooting in less than ideal lighting scenarios. On the other hand though, video stabilization is decent, and for casual mobile photography (or videography) the phone should be enough for most needs.
Now as for battery, there’s a 4800 mAh unit inside the Honor 70 and it’ll be able to last you a day of moderate use thanks to the large capacity. Of course, factors like data usage, gaming, and the constant use of a high display brightness and the 120Hz refresh rate is bound to affect battery longevity on the phone. Thankfully though, it does come with 66W fast charging and according to Honor, it can charge up to 60% in around 20 minutes.
As we mentioned earlier, it is priced at around 549 euros for the base model, set to take on other base-model flagship phones at the same price. Now, there is some concern at this price point, especially the build quality that lacks IP68 protection and Gorilla Glass coating, features which are present in a lot of its rivals.
But if you’re really after one of the best mid-rangers that Honor has to offer, then the Honor 70 is a solid choice, given the overall performance that it can deliver on a day-to-day basis. A good-looking design, zippy performance, and capable cameras definitely round up the strengths of this handset.
Honor 70 Rating: star_fullstar_fullstar_fullstar_fullstar_empty (4 / 5)
- Attractive Design
- Capable Chipset
- Generally Good Cameras
- Large Battery with Fast-charging Support
- Durability Outclassed by Rivals