Our Opinion

The Huawei Nova 3i is a significantly better phone than the Huawei Honor 9N (4GB RAM, 128GB), and is also slightly better value for money. What should you buy? Go for the Huawei Nova 3i!

Huawei Honor 9N (4GB RAM, 128GB)  Huawei Nova 3i 
Huawei Honor 9N Huawei Nova 3i
Buy Now Buy Buy
Excellence Score
38.4
54.4
Value for Money Score
70.8
71.1
Price ₹ 16,596 onwards ₹ 20,990 onwards
Launch Date (India) Jul, 2018 Aug, 2018
Expected Launch Date N/A N/A
Smartphone OS Android 8.1 OreoLow likelihood of getting updated to next Android version Android 8.1 OreoExpected update to next Android version
Touchscreen Yes (Capacitive) Yes (Capacitive)
Screen Size 5.84 inches 6.3 inches
Screen Resolution 1080x2280 pixels (~ 432 pixels per inch) 1080x2340 pixels (~ 409 pixels per inch)
Tall Aspect Ratio / Minimal Bezels Yes Yes
Scratch Resistant Display Yes Yes
Display Features IPS LCD, FullView Display, 2.5D Curved Glass IPS LCD, FullView Display
Full Physical QWERTY Keypad
Processor 2.36 GHz 2.2 GHz
Processor Type Octa Core Octa Core
Processor Name HiSilicon Kirin 659Ranked #47 in Mobile Processor Benchmarks Hisilicon Kirin 710Ranked #15 in Mobile Processor Benchmarks
GPU Mali-T830 MP2 Mali-G51 MP4, GPU Turbo
RAM 4 GB 4 GB
3G Yes Yes
4G Yes Yes
VoLTE Yes Yes
WiFi Yes Yes
GPS Yes Yes
Bluetooth Yes Yes
Connecting Port USB USB
Primary Camera 13MP + 2MP 16MP + 2MP
Camera Auto-Focus Yes Yes
Camera Flash Yes Yes
HD Video Recording Yes (Full HD) Yes (Full HD)
Other Camera Features PDAF, HDR, Panorama 16MP: F/2.2 Aperture, PDAF, Geo-tagging, Touch Focus, Face detection, HDR, Panorama
Secondary Camera 16.0MP 24MP + 2MP
Secondary Camera Features 2.0µm Pixel Size N/A
Internal Memory 128 GB 128 GB
Expandable Memory Slot up to 256 GB up to 256 GB
Contacts Storage Unlimited Unlimited
SMS Storage Unlimited Unlimited
Music Player Yes Yes
FM Radio Yes Yes
Dual SIM GSM+GSM (Hybrid SIM slot) GSM+GSM (Hybrid SIM slot)
Thickness 7.7 mm 7.6 mm
Weight 152 gm 169 gm
Audio Output 3.5mm jack 3.5mm jack
Water Resistant
Battery Capacity 3000 mAh 3340 mAh
Battery Standby N/A N/A
Battery Standby (3G) N/A N/A
Battery Talktime N/A N/A
Battery Talktime (3G) N/A N/A
Fast Charging
Other Battery Parameters N/A N/A
Fingerprint sensor Yes Yes
Other Features Noise Filtration Noise Filtration
2-minute Review [Positives]
  • Beautiful, premium, glass-based design - arguably the best-looking smartphone in its price range - takes a lot of cues from its expensive brethren (like the Honor 10) in its design which basically means that you are getting a modern looking smartphone for quite an affordable price
  • The build quality is great too - the smartphone feels solid in hand and is very well build - the glass on glass construction gives it a premium vibe
  • Compact size - the smartphone is perfect for one-handed use and is neither too small nor too large - anyone who appreciates ergonomics will like this phone
  • Very good collection of colors, so you can pick to your taste (something not common in the budget price bracket)
  • Excellent display - a 5.84-inch IPS LCD panel which has a resolution of 1080 x 2280 pixels and a modern 19:9 aspect ratio (with minimal bezels) which means that you are getting more vertical space which is good for things like reading and social media apps - overall it is one of the best IPS panels in this price bracket - the colors are on point and the display features very good viewing angles - it also gets fairly bright and sunlight visibility is no problem here
  • Huawei’s EMUI skin, though somewhat bloated, brings a tons of customizability, features, and theming capabilities which is not found on stock Android (it also uses lots of vibrant colors in its iconography which depending on your preferences you might like or not)
  • Decent set of dual rear cameras - the phone is able to capture good pictures in bright light conditions - with ample details, low noise, and good dynamic range - even the portrait shots are above average with the background blur not feeling artificial
  • Decent selfie camera too, in good lighting conditions
  • Good call quality with effective noise cancellation
  • The speaker gets fairly loud (however, it is very easy to muffle with your fingers, so you have to be careful while using the phone in landscape mode)
  • Good (though not exceptional) battery life - with moderate use, you will end up 20% battery left in the tank, at the end of the day
  • Dual-SIM with dual-4G standby support
  • Exquisite design - looks pretty much similar to the flagship Huawei Nova 3 from every angle, sticking to the premium design recipe which consists of using a combination of metal and glass - the Nova 3i features a metal frame, which is essentially sandwiched between the glass coating at the front and the back - they also blend very well around edges, accentuating the seamless design
  • For security, there is both a fingerprint sensor and face unlock
  • The fingerprint sensor is easy to setup and works pretty fast as well - besides security, the fingerprint sensor can be further used as a capacitive button for taking pictures, scroll down the notifications drawer, scroll through pictures in the gallery, pick up calls and even turn off alarms
  • Face Unlock work reasonably well too
  • Good, modern, tall 6.3 inch display with a notch - overall, the screen looks sharp and can also get pretty bright - it also holds up pretty well with viewing angles
  • Huawei's EMUI interface is fairly decent, and allows a lot of customization and features like one-handed operation, and motion control (it does have plenty of bloat though in the form of both Huawei and third-party apps and games, only some of which can be uninstalled)
  • Additionally, the security settings also include App lock, where you can lock an app and get access through fingerprint authentication or face ID
  • Good, mid-range performance backed by the capable Kirin 710, which is similar in performance to the Snapdragon 636 - day-to-day tasks are handled with ease, and games mostly run fine too, except the most demanding ones
  • Also supports the much-hyped GPU Turbo technology, which should improve battery consumption while gaming, for supported games
  • The biggest USP of the phone is the set of very good cameras - 2 in the rear and 2 in the front - arguably among the best in this price bracket - they are able to take good shots and portraits in most lighting conditions, with some additional help from Huawei's AI engine which works behind the scene to optimize the pictures
  • Good battery life, backed by a 3340mAh battery - will comfortably last the work day and then some
  • On the whole, Huawei hasn’t sacrificed a lot with the Nova 3i, when compared to its flagship the Nova 3 - the only significant downgrade is in terms of performance - and unless you are into heavy gaming, its not a difference that you will notice - all in all, for most users, the Nova 3i will be a very good choice in this price bracket, and will compete well with best of the competition, with the very good cameras being its main trump card - if you do want to prioritise the performance over the camera however, then its similar prized sibling Honor Play is worth looking at - and if you want the best of all worlds (camera + performance + battery), then the new champion in this price segment, the Poco F1 is definitely worth considering, as long as you can grab one in the flash sales
2-minute Review [Negatives]
  • One of the main issues with the phone is in terms of performance - day-to-day experience is ok but not always butter smooth - there are the odd stutters, and launching apps takes a tad bit longer than they should - a lot of this might also have to do with EMUI not being optimised, apart from the aging chipset
  • No fast charging support - takes about 2.5 hours to charge fully
  • On the whole, the Honor 9N, while it looks gorgeous, is let down a bit by its performance - if you want good all-round devices you should look at the likes of Redmi Note 5 Pro, or ZenFone Max Pro instead - both these phones bring faster processors, better cameras, and larger batteries
  • No fast charging support - takes a little over two hours to charge completely
  • Supports the old microUSB standard instead of the modern USB-C standard
Expert Reviews
  1. If you want a sleek phone with a great display, the Honor 9N makes for a good buy
    gadgets.ndtv.com in-depth Read Review »
  2. One of the most beautiful and stylish phones in this range
    fonearena.com in-depth Read Review »
  3. Brings the Honor 10’s elegant design to a sub 15K price point, but the corners that have had to be cut are obvious
    digit.in in-depth Read Review »
  4. Worth it, if you’re looking for a smart-looking phone
    bgr.in in-depth Read Review »
  5. A good smartphone...most people who are planning to buy one will not regret their decision
    indianexpress.com in-depth Read Review »
  6. Easily your go-to phone in 2018....checks all the necessary boxes for a youth-friendly phone
    ibtimes.co.in in-depth Read Review »
  7. A gorgeous looking smartphone, which comes with the glass body and a premium looking display....However, in terms of performance, rear camera and battery, Asus and Xiaomi have an upper hand
    themobileindian.com in-depth Read Review »
  8. Worth its price if you're looking for a good-looking device with a commendable camera...but fails to match up to the competition in some other respects
    firstpost.com in-depth Read Review »
  9. A beautiful piece of design and hardware...but held back by its performance
    beebom.com in-depth Read Review »
  10. economictimes.indiatimes.com in-depth Read Review »
  11. hindustantimes.com in-depth Read Review »
  12. stuff.tv in-depth Read Review »
  13. business-standard.com in-depth Read Review »
  14. deccanchronicle.com in-depth Read Review »
  15. indiatoday.in in-depth Read Review »
  16. thequint.com hands-on Read Review »
  1. Xiaomi has priced the Poco F1 quite aggressively, making the Nova 3i and all other phones at this price look less appealing
    gadgets.ndtv.com in-depth Read Review »
  2. Almost a flagship smartphone
    bgr.in in-depth Read Review »
  3. A premium-looking budget smartphone with little to no complaints
    ibtimes.co.in in-depth Read Review »
  4. If you want a device that offers a great balance between everything on your device, along with a major focus on the cameras, the Nova 3i is one of your best bets
    beebom.com in-depth Read Review »
  5. techradar.com in-depth Read Review »
  6. fonearena.com in-depth Read Review »
  7. economictimes.indiatimes.com in-depth Read Review »
  8. gadgetsnow.com in-depth Read Review »
  9. deccanchronicle.com in-depth Read Review »
  10. themobileindian.com hands-on Read Review »
  11. indiatoday.in hands-on Read Review »
User Reviews
  1. Flipkart4.4 5,984+ reviews »
  2. Amazon4.7 8+ reviews »
  1. Amazon4.0 1,116+ reviews »
Official Website Official Website » Official Website »
Unofficial specs? N/A N/A
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