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Honor 7A Unboxing and First Impressions

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Honor disrupted the market with the sub PHP 25K Honor 10 and the sub PHP 8K Honor 9 Lite. But will the new Honor 7A do the same and make major waves? Let's see!
Pretty display

The highlight feature is the 8MP f/2.0 selfie camera with softlight LED flash that promises to take better selfies than the competition.

We did a selfie shootout with the OPPO A83 which you can read here.

It has a 5.7-inch HD+ display that is powered by a 1.4GHz 64-bit Snapdragon 430 octa-core processor with an Adreno 505.

Here is it!

Honor 7A Specs

Display: 5.7-inch 2.5D curved IPS screen w/ HD+ 1440 x 720 resolution at 282 ppi
CPU: 1.4GHz 64-bit Snapdragon 430 octa-core processor
GPU: Adreno 505
RAM: 2GB/32GB
ROM: 16GB/32GB expandable via microSD card slot up to 128GB (dedicated)
Main Camera: 13MP f/2.2 w/ PDAF and LED flash
Selfie Camera: 8MP f/2.0 w/ softlight LED flash
Battery: 3,000mAh
OS: Android 8.0 Oreo w/ EMUI 8.0
Connectivity: WiFi, 3G, LTE w/ VoLTE, Bluetooth 4.2, GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, dual SIM
Sensors: Accelerometer, light, proximity, sound
Others: Fingerprint sensor, face unlock, dual microphones, Colors: black, gold, blue
Dimensions: 152.4 x 73 x 7.8 mm
Weight: 150 g
Price: PHP 6,990 (2GB RAM/16GB ROM), PHP 7,990 (3GB RAM/32GB ROM)

Disclaimer: This unit was loaned to us by Honor Philippines.

Unboxing/Accessories

Pre-production unit with just the power plug and USB type-A to micro USB cord

We received the Honor 7A without a box and the phone only included the USB Type-A to micro USB cable and the Huawei power brick.

Build Quality/Design

From the back

The Honor 7A takes a lot of design cues from the competition with a solid blue colored shiny frame that encloses a 2.5D glass at the front and a polycarbonate plate at the back.

Basic build!

At the back, the dual lens set up is on the top left with a microphone and fingerprint sensor in the middle of the back plate.
Headphone jack on top
Headphone jack on top
Micro USB port at the bottom
Micro USB port at the bottom
Just the SIM card tray
Just the SIM card tray
Volume rocker and power button
Volume rocker and power button

In front is the 5.7-inch HD+ 1440 x 720 resolution w/ 2.5D curved glass display with a chin bezel that has the honor logo. On top are the cameras, sensors and ear piece. There is no notch.

The top part of the frame contains the 3.5 mm headphone jack while the bottom contains two sets of speaker grills and the micro USB port. Only one set of speaker grills produces sound. We assume the second has the microphone.

The left side of the frame has the sim card tray while the right side contains the volume rocker and power button.

The build, design, and ergonomics of the phone is decent for the price.

Initial findings

1.  The Honor 7A does it again being a great value for the price with a  5.7-inch HD+ 1440 x 720 resolution w/ 2.5D curved glass. It is vibrant and contrasty at first glance.

2. It is powered by a Snapdragon 430 with Adreno 505 and up to 2GB of RAM. So it isn't a slouch in performance. It is expandable to 128GB but we wish it had more than 16GB built in storage because of how large apps are becoming. It has a decent amount of 3000 mAh battery capacity that on paper could last the whole day.

3. It runs Android 8.0 Oreo w/ EMUI 8.0 so it will have the features that people have grown to love about it. It is a snappy but fully featured experience but the looks can be polarising. You either like it or you don't. It is more integrated with Google services and apps though so it lessens app duplications.

4. The rear camera is a 13MP f/2.2 w/ PDAF and LED flash while the selfie camera is an 8MP f/2.0 w/ softlight LED flash. Honor is stating that the softlight LED flash is a key feature that will make selfies better in extremely dark situations.

The camera UI looks similar to the Huawei's and it does have most but not all of the camera features we found in similarly priced Huawei phones. We'll have to dive into it more for the review.

The selfie images were surprisingly good in most situations. It isn't the sharpest images but it is very accurate in reproducing the colors and contrast of the scene. We got in depth to this because of the selfie camera comparison we linked earlier.

The rear camera images were good. The images are not that vibrant but are accurate reproductions of the first few scenes we shot. The contrast and color are just good. 

5. The Honor 7a has fingerprint sensor, LED notification that works quickly and accurately. We have yet to see faceunlock nor have we tried OTG. It has one speaker at the bottom.

There was no label of fast charge support.

We'll have to dive deeper for the full review because the phone was running the pre-production software.

As of the moment

The Honor 7A is a compelling addition to the highly competitive affordable smartphone market with decent build and design with okay spec'd components. In our initial impressions, perform better than expected because of the refined software experience.

We hope that we have more good news from this device.

Stay tuned for our full review out soon!
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