Honor 9X global variant launches in India after a long wait, Honor Magic Watch 2 and Band 5i accompany
Huawei and sub-brand Honor have been badly hit due to the U.S. President Trump’s executive orders to bar companies (including Google) from transacting with the Chinese giant. The orders came in May 2019 and since then, there have been multiple extensions to the final date when these orders come into play, leading to a long period of confusion and frustration for company officials, fans, and especially Huawei and Honor users. After a long hiatus from what seems to be a speculative period for the company, Honor is bringing the Honor 9X – which was actually introduced last year – to India.
The Honor 9X was first unveiled alongside a more powerful Pro variant in July 2019, in China. The phone features an X-shaped holographic gradient on the back, a full notchless display, a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, and a pop-up selfie camera. Further, both the Honor 9X and the 9X Pro were powered by Huawei’s new 7nm silicon, the Kirin 810.
However, when Honor launched the phone in Europe in October 2019, there were certain trade-offs that had to be made. Since the executive orders prevented new Huawei and Honor devices from being certified for Android, the company had to choose older hardware to be able to retain GMS (Google Mobile Services). Therefore, there is only a single global version of Honor 9X; it comes with a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner, 12nm Kirin 710F chipset (same as Kirin 710) and the same is being launched in India today.
The Honor 9X which is being launched in India today is also fairly identical to the Huawei Y9 Prime (2019) in terms of design. The 6.59-inch Full HD+ IPS LCD display, 4,000mAh battery, USB Type-C, and the 16MP pop-up camera are some of the physical attributes both of the phones share besides the Kirin 710F SoC. When it comes to the rear cameras, the Honor 9X global features a 48MP primary camera, an 8MP wide-angle camera, and a 2MP depth sensor.
In terms of software, the Honor 9X runs EMUI 9.1 based on Android 9 Pie. The phone could receive EMUI 10 based on Android 10 but there’s no final date available yet.
Honor 9X India Specifications
|Dimensions and Weight||163.5 x 77.3 x 8.8 mm;
|Display||6.59″ FHD+ (2340x1080p) IPS-LCD;
|SoC||12nm HiSilicon Kirin 710F|
|RAM and Storage||4GB + 128GB;
Expandable up to 512GB through dedicated microSD card slot
|Rear Camera||48MP, f/1.8 + 8MP, f/2.4 120-degree ultra-wide + 2MP, f/2.4 depth sensor|
|Front Camera||16MP, f/2.2|
|Android Version||EMUI 9.1 based on Android 9 Pie|
Honor Magic Watch 2
Besides the Honor 9X smartphone, Honor is also launching the Magic Watch 2 in India. The watch is powered by the Kirin A1 chipset meant for power-efficiency and long-lasting battery life over high performance. It runs LiteOS which may not very convincing for smartwatch users and limits usability to just custom watchfaces. Among other features, the Honor Magic Watch 2 gets 15 fitness tracking modes, a stress meter, and extensive sleep tracking. There is no automatic workout detection or IP rating.
Honor Magic Watch 2 Specification
|Specification||46mm Honor Magic Watch 2||42mm Honor Magic Watch 2|
|Display||1.39-inch 454×454 AMOLED display||1.2-inch 390×390 AMOLED display|
|SOC||Kirin A1||Kirin A1|
|Battery||455 mAh||215 mAh|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth v5.1, Wi-Fi, dual-frequency GPS||Bluetooth v5.1, Wi-Fi, dual-frequency GPS|
|Health Features||Heart rate, sleep tracking, stress monitor, breathing guidance, 15 fitness modes||Heart rate, sleep tracking, stress monitor, breathing guidance, 15 fitness modes|
|Water Resistance||50 meters water-resistant, not IP-rated||50 meters water-resistant, not IP-rated|
Honor Band 5i
Another product that Honor brings to the fore today is the Honor Band 5i, which is a more affordable variant of the Honor Band 5. The Honor Band 5i features a 0.96-inch TFT display instead of an AMOLED with a lower resolution compared to the Honor Band 5. One of the ends of the Honor Band 5i comes with a male USB plug built-in so it can be directly plugged into a USB Type-A port for charging.
The Honor Band 5i features a 190mAh battery with a claimed standby time of 9 days. There’s no NFC support on the Band 5i and besides the optical heart rate sensor, it features a 3-axis accelerometer.
Honor Band 5 vs Band 5i Specification
|Specification||Honor Band 5||Honor Band 5i|
|Battery||100mAh, 15 days standby||91mAh, 9 days standby|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth v4.2||Bluetooth v4.2|
|Water Resistance||50 meters||50 meters|
Honor 9X, Magic Watch 2, Band 5i: Price & Availability
The Honor 9X will be available in two variants – 4GB/128GB and 6GB/128GB. The 4GB RAM variant will be priced at ₹13,999 (~$200) while the 6GB RAM variant will be available for ₹16,999 (~$240). These will be available in India via Flipkart starting January 19th, 2020.
The 42mm variant of the Honor Magic Watch 2 is priced starting at ₹11,999 (~$170) while the 46mm variant will be priced starting at ₹12,999 (~$185). The Honor Band 5i will be available for ₹1,999 (~$20). The Honor Magic Watch 2 and the Band 5i will be available via Amazon India starting January 19th, 2020.