Honor may still be at the mercy of Huawei’s ongoing issues with Google and a certain Tango’d US President, but it hasn’t stopped them pushing out two new tempting smartphones, including the flagship 5G Honor View 30 Pro and a global release for the Honor 9X Pro.
Buy one and you’ll be using Huawei’s App Gallery as opposed to the Google Play Store for your apps, and while it’s getting better by the day, there’s no denying it remains a stunted experience.
Away from phones, we’re about to get Honor laptops here for the first time, some noise cancelling true wireless buds, and the Honor MagicWatch 2 has been treated to new straps and a software upgrade. Here’s all you need to know.
Flagship 5G: Honor View 30 Pro
Honor’s first ever 5G phone is also its new flagship. The View 30 Pro gets a 6.57in fullHD+ display offering 400 pixels-per-inch, and a screen-to-body ratio of over 91%.
Innards include Huawei’s top ranking Kirin 990 processor, 8GB of RAM and either 128GB or 256GB of storage. A triple camera setup comprises a 40MP primary Sony sensor backed up by a 3x lossless zoom telephoto lens and 109-degree equivalent super ultra-wide lense.
A 4,100mAh battery with 40W wireless charging and 27W wireless charging is designed to last all day. Soon to be available in Ocean Blue, Midnight Black, Icelandic Frost and Sunrise orange, expect to pay around £600.
Going global: Honor 9X Pro
Available in China since last year, a global version of the 9X Pro finally reaches these shores with a £249 price tag.
The 6.59in FullView LCD device is virtually edge-to-edge with a 92% screen-to-body ratio thanks in part to the 16MP front-facing pop-up camera leaving the display entirely notch-free.
Running a Kirin 810 AI chip, you get 6GB of RAM and 256GB of storage expandable to 512GB with a microSD card.
The rear triple camera is made up of a 48MP main shooter, alongside telephoto and super ultra-wide lenses. Elsewhere there’s a 4,000mAh battery, and a side-mounted fingerprint sensor.
It’s available in Midnight Black and Phantom Purple with a fancy, X-shaped 3D gradient glass back that’s virtually holographic.
Laptop debut: Honor MagicBook
The MagicBook 14 and 15 are Honor’s first laptops to be sold globally.
Both affordable and both running Windows 10 (because the trade ban doesn’t extend to Microsoft), the notebooks are made from aluminium and come in very smart looking Space Gray or Mystic Silver finishes.
Each laptop is powered by an AMD Ryzen 5 3500U processor with Radeon Vega 8 integrated graphics. That comes with 8GB of RAM and either a 256GB or 512GB SSD.
Ports comprise USB Type-C, 2x USB Type-A, HDMI, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. A fingerprint sensor is integrated into the power button and there’s a right tidy pop-up webcam nestled in the middle of the F keys.
The 14 and 15 obviously denote screen size, and both are Full HD 16:9 displays. The 14in weighs 1.38kg and the 15in 1.53kg. Honor is claiming up to 10 hours use on a single charge. Dropping towards the end of March, expect to pay from €599.
True wireless: Magic Earbuds
Some true wireless earphones have been thrown into the mix too. The Magic Earbuds are fitness focused and have active noise cancellation (ANC).
Yes, they look like Apple AirPods Pro with elongated stems and in-ear seals for sound isolation. No they’re not as expensive at €129.
Each bud houses a 10mm driver, three on-board mics for noise cancelling, and a capacitive touch sensor for the controls.
Battery life is easily the Earbuds weakest area, however, with 3.5 hours playtime increasing to just 13 with the charging case. Pick between standard white or something called Robin Egg Blue (turquoise to the rest of us) when they arrive in April.
Straps for cash: Honor MagicWatch 2 upgrades
The Honor MagicWatch 2 is now even more customisable thanks to a new line of EastFit Series straps, including the excellently named fluoroelastomer (an eco-friendly hypoallergenic material) and high-quality Italian leather.
There are six colors available for the fluoroelastomer, including Daylight Yellow, Olive Green, Reef Blue, Sky Blue, Lilac Purple, and Camellia Pink, and two colors, Wonderland Green and Wizard Purple, for the leather strap. All are available from April priced at €35 each.
In addition to the new straps, you'll find several limited edition designs thanks to a series of artist collaborations. Styles include Pop Art to avant-garde calligraphy from the likes of Jacky Tsai and Giovvanni Ozzola.
From the end of March, The MagicWatch 2 also gets an over-the-air software update that includes an enhanced SpO2 monitor to track the oxygen saturation levels in your bloodstream during a workout. A Female Cycle Tracker for women to track their periods and record symptoms has also been added.