Honor Magic 4 Pro review: All the makings of a great flagship phone
When Honor announced the Magic 4 Pro in February 2022, it came just six months after the supposed international launch of the Honor Magic 3. And, indeed, if you were to look at the two smartphones, you might not immediately spot the differences.
It’s been a confusing launch cycle, but one that perhaps stems from the company’s newfound ambitions. Honor appears very keen to be taken seriously – no sooner had the Magic 4 Pro been announced was it also joined by the Honor Magic 4 Ultimate, more or less replacing the Magic 3 Pro+ position.
As the company looks to forge a new life for itself away from Huawei, then, the Magic 4 Pro represents its first serious offering – and there’s a lot to consider. Let’s see how it compares to the other flagship phones on the market.
There’s a lot to love about the Honor Magic 4 Pro: it features a great design, it’s powerful and it has a great display – and a very impressive camera system rounds out the package.
However, it’s let down by the overall software experience. Honor seems to have undone some of the good work that Android 12 has worked towards and degrades the experience with aggressive background management.
While the phone runs smoothly enough, it’s the details that let it down – and, once you get past the bloatware, the frustrations really hit home when that video doorbell notification arrives 10 minutes after the caller has walked away. That, and limited future upgrade plans, mean that you need to think carefully if you’re planning on investing in this phone.
If you’ve generally been happy with Honor devices in the past – or you were once a fan of the experience that Huawei offered – then you may well find that this is a phone that serves you well. The hardware sings and that fast charging, especially if you invest in Honor’s SuperCharge wireless charger, will blow you away.
Ultimately, the Honor Magic 4 Pro is a phone of many positive experiences. You just have to decide if the concessions are worth it.
The Magic 4 Pro looks a lot like the Magic 3, defined by the huge camera on the rear. And, as we alluded to up top, some might be wondering what exactly has happened to the Honor Magic 3 has got to. Having been confirmed for an international launch back in October 2021, we’re still waiting – meaning all attention has turned to the Honor Magic 4 Pro, instead.
What the Magic 4 Pro gives Honor is a veritable flagship phone. Designed to be at the top of its game, with build quality that reflects this aim, it also has more than just a passing resemblance to the Huawei Mate 40 Pro. These companies may be separate, but the design of the phones hasn’t totally diverged just yet.
That’s a double-edged sword. If you were looking for something unique, then the Honor Magic 4 Pro isn’t quite it; conversely, if you’re looking to relive those Huawei vibes from a few years ago (were you a fan of the Huawei P30 Pro?), then the Honor Magic 4 Pro is about as close as you’ll get.
There’s an IP68 protection rating, and a curved glass front and back that ensures the large phone can fit in your hand. Honor is very much running from the flagship phone playbook here.
It looks great, too – especially when that rear Cyan colour shimmers in the sunshine. It’s a little slippery, as a big device, but there’s also a case in the box that will make it a little more grippy and provide a modicum of protection.