Monday, 10 August 2015 16:07

Huawei’s P8 – first looks

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Huawei’s new P8, Android Smartphone is a serious attempt at a flagship class smartphone. It succeeds.

I am calling this a first looks article because I really have not had time to delve into all its depths and will do so over the coming week. The Australian web site is here.

I can say that first impressions are of a premium product, very iPhone inspired right down to the champagne gold, round edged, metal uni-body and back cover (black also available) – imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Then you notice the dual sim slots on one side accessed via a sim removal pin. This model actually has a dual sim variant (not reviewed) – these two slots are for a nano-sim in one and a micro-SD card in the in the other.

Next thing is the vivid and clear 5.2” IPS, 1920x1080, 424ppi, touch screen.

Android Lollipop boots and you can skip past the Google login and come up to a fairly lightly skinned Android user interface.

The P8 is the successor to the P7 I reviewed last August and shares a lot of those design queues too – just a little more rounded and refined. It compared favourably to the Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8 and at the time sold for A$549. This model sells for A$699 (damn the weak Australian dollar) so while its about 30% cheaper than an iPhone or Galaxy S6 it is pushing the price envelope.

My post script at the time was “I have been using the 5" Ascend P7 daily for about a week now. The most interesting thing is that I don’t miss my flagship, premium, Samsung Galaxy S5. That is not meant to disparage the S5 in any way - I developed a strong emotional attachment to it - it is an excellent handset. Sadly this illustrates that Android is Android and differences between fully featured phones is minimal. It matters little if it is a Samsung, LG, HTC, or now Huawei.”

Last week I reviewed another Asian brand – OPPO’s 5" flagship R7 at $449 and I don’t again mean to compare this and the Huawei but more and more the value is showing in the middle, not top end of the market. I have also developed a new paradigm – methodology for fairly reviewing the tsunami of smartphones available to Australians.

So until the formal review – make sure you look closely at the Huawei P8 and consider it strongly as a mid to high level Android smartphone in the flagship class.

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Ray Shaw

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Ray Shaw ray@im.com.au  has a passion for IT ever since building his first computer in 1980. He is a qualified journalist, hosted a consumer IT based radio program on ABC radio for 10 years, has developed world leading software for the events industry and is smart enough to no longer own a retail computer store!

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