Before the year 2020 ended, Huawei sold its Honor to ensure the sub-brand’s survival. A year later, Honor successfully ventured past the lands it used to reign over, seeking greener pastures in an ethnically diverse continent — in hopes of making its mark in the consumer technology industry, but on a global scale.
Liberating from Huawei gave Honor the power to mend broken ties, especially in doing business with Western companies. The now-independent brand resumed partnerships with Google and Qualcomm, proceeding to deliver smartphones with the software and hardware that most people adore.
Marking the return of Google Mobile Services (GMS) to the smartphone maker is the Honor 50 lineup. Its latest promise is also equipped with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chipset. So, like any big comeback, I think the elephant in the room needs to be addressed.
Is it worth buying? Should you jump and try it? Is it any better than any other smartphone today? And will Honor ever find its footing once again?
The advent of Honor 50 piqued the curiosity of the GadgetMatch team. But the most electrified one is none other than yours truly. For two years, I’ve been wandering aimlessly — jumping from one smartphone to another in hopes of finding the comfort and love I’ve experienced with Huawei.
Losing GMS was a dealbreaker; my modern life depended on it. I’ve attempted to bridge the gap through Huawei’s solutions over the years, but it lost the very essence of having a smartphone. Which, for me, should be about making your life easier. Why would I tinker with a smartphone when it’s supposed to be smart enough to do its job without using my last three brain cells?
For that very reason, I ended up cradling and alternating between Samsung’s Galaxy smartphones — which I learned to love along the way. But of course, nothing beats the time I spent with all of my Huawei phones.
Honor’s comeback gave me hope that maybe, there’s always a second chance to everything in life. Ex-lovers and smartphones included.
The Honor 50 felt like your ex coming back around for a second chance. Except something has changed, inside and out. At first glance, the Honor 50 looks exactly like the Huawei P50. The way it was designed; curves flowing harmoniously. And one striking, horrifying arrangement: humongous lenses passing off like enlarged eyes of a housefly.
However, the details beg to differ. The Honor 50 comes in various colors: Frost Crystal, Emerald Green, Midnight Black, and Honor Code. Its color options are entirely different compared to the Huawei P50’s color lineup.
Originally, I wanted an Emerald Green. It looks expensive, classy, and apt for my premium taste. Twisted fate, I got the Frost Crystal. Shining, shimmering, splendid. Except there’s no Aladdin to ask me when did I last let my heart decide.
It looks dreamy with its diamond-like finish, sparkling from different angles. It’s perfect for anyone who has a flamboyant personality — something my colleagues describe me as making this an inevitable match.
While I do believe I have a bold personality, I’m not a fan of anything eye-catching. I highly surmise that all eyes should be on me or my face, not on any piece of tech I’ve been holding or wearing. I digress.
For the untrained eye, the Honor 50 and the Huawei P50 strike an uncanny resemblance. But being meticulous pays off. You’ll see there’s more to the Honor 50 than meets the eye. Also, a friendly reminder to use discernment whenever someone from the past comes back lest you’ll be burned by the same love twice.
The Honor 50’s lenses, when you peruse it up-close, show off its quad-camera system. The first lens on top houses the 108-megapixel main camera, while the second lens on the bottom packs its triple, smaller lenses. An 8-megapixel wide-angle camera, a 2-megapixel bokeh camera, and a 2-megapixel macro camera.
Having said that, one of the clamors around the Honor 50 is its low-megapixel count for its supporting lenses. I believe that cameras are one of the more important things to talk about, seeing how Honor has been carrying Huawei’s former glory in the camera department. So, don’t worry, bud. We’ll talk about it later on.
Honor gave me a familiar feeling when I held it in my hands. The iconic ‘Curved Waterfall’ gave a comfortable grip that looks and feels sexy when caressing your fingers and gliding your palms along its curves and edges.
Yet somehow, the curved screen disconcerts me. What with my experience going after flat screens and boxy smartphones of Galaxy’s Note and Flip line. Typing, scrolling, and swiping on a curved display do not work flawlessly like before.
I find my fingers and grip slipping through the curves, somehow making my heart skip a beat for fear of dropping the smartphone. Precisely the reason why I don’t use my Huawei Mate 20 Pro anymore, and why I refused to switch to the latest Mate smartphones.
Despite the changes in my preference, the curved display is still wonderful to look at. I actually enjoyed re-watching Call Me By Your Name and other familiar titles on HBO Go. The unit I had isn’t compatible with Netflix — barring me from enjoying the heartwarming Hometown Cha Cha Cha during the course of the review.
Nonetheless, the 75-degree curved 6.57-inch AMOLED screen is still a treat. It’s just isn’t my cup of tea anymore.
Like any exes, assuming they’ve evolved and learned their lessons, they bring something new to the table. The Honor 50 hops on the fast refresh rate trend, bringing 120Hz to its display along with a 300Hz touch sampling rate.
As with any 2021 smartphone, the Honor 50 intelligently adjusts the refresh rate depending on your usage, which helps with preserving the battery because frankly, we don’t need to be using 120Hz all the time.
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