Huawei Nova 2i review: Huawei's best flagship features have been successfully smuggled into the mid-tier

Huawei Nova 2i
  • Huawei Nova 2i
  • Huawei Nova 2i
  • Huawei Nova 2i
  • Expert Rating

    4.25 / 5

Pros

  • Fantastic design and build quality
  • A lot of phone for $500

Cons

  • Full-Vision display let down by low-quality
  • Camera sometimes inconsistent in low-light situations

Bottom Line

With the $499 price-tag in mind, there’s not a lot out there that can match the Huawei Nova 2i.

Would you buy this?

Performance

Like most of Huawei’s recent phones, the Nova 2i uses machine learning techniques to improve performance based on user behavior. However, like most Huawei recent phones, the Nova 2i doesn’t really do a great job of explaining or surfacing this feature. This isn't to say that I don't believe Huawei when they say it’s there. However, it’s a feature that remains frustratingly difficult to measure or quantify during everyday use. By nature, it mostly works behind the scenes and that makes its contributions difficult to gauge.

Nevertheless, I found little to complain about during my time with the Nova 2i. Apps loaded fast, multitasking was relatively robust and nothing really struck the wrong chord. Unfortunately, when it comes to the usual benchmarks, the Nova 2i’s Kirin chipset didn’t really hold its ground.

While it certainly came within spitting distance of the Qualcomm chipsets powering the Moto X4 and LG G6 at points, it rarely surpassed them. It fell particularly short of the mark when it came to gaming benchmarks like 3DMarks SlingShot test.

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