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Full Review

Huawei Honor 6 Plus Review

Compared to recent flagships like the Samsung Galaxy S6 and LG G4, the Honor 6 Plus (or 6+) might appear a bit lacking at first glance, with specs and features that leave it trailing ever so slightly behind them, but when you consider that it’s a good £200 cheaper at around £300 SIM free it suddenly looks a lot better.

This is a flagship which isn’t trying to directly compete with the big names, instead it’s seemingly aimed at the more price conscious, while getting as close to the market leaders in specs and features as possible. So just how well does Huawei's new phone fair? Read on to find out.

Design

The Honor 6 Plus won’t be winning any design awards, that’s for sure, but it’s far from ugly either. It has a slim 7.5mm thick rectangular build, which with a shiny plastic frame and a glass fibre back looks derivative of the Xperia line fused with an older iPhone model.

Honor 6 Plus Side Angle

The Honor 6 Plus is by no means an ugly phone, especially as that glass fibre back reveals subtle patterns when light shines on it and the aluminium frame adds extra style and a sprinkle of quality.

Honor 6+ Back

But the plastic frame certainly leaves it looking and feeling lower end than most flagships and there are other concerns too, as the glass back has a top layer of plastic which will become dull over time although it does protect it from scratches and cracks.

Screen

There’s a big and bold 5.5-inch 1080 x 1920 IPS LCD screen on the Huawei Honor 6+. That leaves it with a fairly crisp pixel density of 401 pixels per inch. It’s no match for the equally large but QHD LG G4 then, but it is a match for the iPhone 6 Plus, which given that it’s so much cheaper is rather impressive.

Contrast and colours are good too, as are viewing angles. There are undoubtedly better smartphone screens but you won’t be disappointed with this one and it wouldn’t look out of place on a far more expensive phone.

Power

Rather than a Snapdragon chip the Honor 6 Plus uses an octa-core HiSilicon Kirin 925 processor, with four cores clocked at 1.8GHz and the other four running at 1.3GHz. That’s a high end spec and while the Kirin 925 can’t typically match the performance of the Snapdragon 810 found in the likes of the HTC One M9 it’s not far off.

The Honor 6+ also has 3GB of RAM, which is the same as just about every other recent flagship phone. Its processor and RAM combined leave it as a seriously slick performer, outclassing most other £300 phones.

Camera

The Huawei Honor 6 Plus’s camera is one of its most interesting features, as it has dual 8 megapixel sensors on the back. Very few smartphones have two sensors for the same camera, but it’s not a totally unique idea, as the HTC One M8 does similar.

It allows you to refocus a shot after taking it on the Huawei Honor 6 Plus, giving you more editing options and control over how the photo comes out. Another thing it has in common with HTC’s snapper is large pixels, so while it’s only an 8 megapixel camera, which sounds low for a flagship, it can take in a lot of light for strong performance even in dark settings.

Huawei Honor 6+ Camera Shot

Shots taken on the Honor 6+ are pretty decent, but we've seen better contract and range on the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S6 and iPhone 6. However, thankfully it does have a HDR range mode which helps improves things.

Huawei Honor 6+ Selfie Camera

The front-facing camera is a bit of a highlight, as it has an 8 megapixel sensor. Just one this time, but with many smartphone makers equipping their selfie-snappers with 5 megapixel or lower sensors it means it’s more capable of taking detailed photos than much of the competition.

Interface

While the hardware of the Honor 6+ is generally quite impressive the software could use work. For one thing it runs Android 4.4, which is disappointingly dated when most new phones are now on Android 5.0. Even many low-end handsets are launching with the latest OS version, so it’s a shame, but hopefully Huawei will update the software soon.

Honor 6 Plus Software

That’s not the only issue we have though, as Huawei’s Emotion UI which it’s overlaid on top is not something we’re fans of, primarily because it doesn’t have an app drawer, which is just something you expect with Android. The lack of one arguably makes it more intuitive to first time users, as all the apps are just on your home screen, but it also makes it hard to keep your home screens tidy.

Features

Beyond its innovative camera the main feature of the Honor 6+ is that it has two SIM card slots. That’s not so unusual in some parts of the world, but here in the UK we rarely get phones with more than one SIM card slot.

It can be handy because it allows you to for example have a work SIM and a personal SIM in the same phone, or if you regularly travel between two different countries you can have SIM cards for each of them in at the same time.

It’s worth noting though that only one of the two slots supports 4G, so one of your SIM cards will be a bit more limited.

Battery Life, Memory and Connectivity

There’s a 3600 mAh battery in the Honor 6+. That’s certainly on the large side, beating out other high end phones like the Samsung Galaxy S6 and LG G4. It translates into good battery life, with the handset stretching well into a second with moderate use.

Memory comes in at a choice of 16 or 32GB and then on top of that there’s a microSD card slot with support for cards of up to 128GB. For connectivity options you get Wi-Fi, 3G, 4G, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC and infrared.

Conclusion

The Honor 6+ is a top flight phone for the price. In fact with a slightly improved build it could justify being far more expensive.

Other than the appealingly low price its main standout features are its dual 8 megapixel camera sensors and its dual SIM card slot. If they’re things you want then the Huawei Honor 6+ is an easy sell, especially as it delivers in most other ways too, with a big and sharp screen, a hefty amount of power and solid battery life.

The design could be better but that’s forgivable at this price point, as is the slightly idiosyncratic interface. Were those two things improved this would be a five star phone, but even as things are it’s easily recommended

Specifications

Specifications

Dimensions : 150.5 x 75.7 x 7.5mm

Weight: 165g

Screen size: 5.5” (1080 x 1920)

Screen Resolution: 1080 x 1920 display resolution

Pixels Per Inch (PPI) : 401

Processor: Octa-core application processor

RAM: 3GB

On-board Memory: 16, 32GB (microSD card slot)

Camera: 8MP (rear) 1080p@30fps, (8 megapixel front-facing)

Operating system: Android 4.4.2

3G / 4G LTE: Yes / Yes

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