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Watch: Honor Play, the best affordable gaming phone today?

The Honor Play is the first gaming-centric smartphone the company. It is equipped with high-end specs but, at a price of a mid-range device.
Meet Honor Play

It is also the very first device with GPU Turbo technology. Very promising right? Let's check if it is the right affordable gaming smartphone for you!

Honor Play, the best affordable gaming phone today?

Honor Play Specs

Display: 6.3-inch 2.5D curved Gorilla Glass protected IPS screen w/ 2340 x  1080 resolution at 409 ppi
CPU: 2.36GHz 64-bit Kirin 970 octa-core processor w/ NPU and i7 co-processor
GPU: Mali-G72 MP12 w/ GPU Turbo
ROM: 64GB expandable via microSD card slot up to 256GB
Back Camera: 16MP f/2.2 + 2MP f/2.4 w/ PDAF, CAF, and dual tone LED flash
Selfie Camera: 16MP f/2.0
Battery: 3,750mAh w/ fast charging
OS: Android 8.1 Oreo w/ EMUI 8.2
Connectivity: WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac (2.4GHz/5GHz), 4G LTE Cat 18, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, OTG, NFC, GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS, dual SIM (hybrid)
Sensors: Accelerometer, light, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, sound, magnetic, pressure
Others: Fingerprint sensor, USB Type-C, 7.1 channel Histen audio, Colors: black, blue
Dimensions: 167.91 x 74.27 x 7.84 mm
Weight: 176 g
Price: PHP 15,990

What is GPU Turbo?

GPU Turbo
GPU Turbo

It is the new technology of Honor which has hardware-software integration and graphics processing acceleration which optimizes mobile gaming experience.

According to Honor, it can improve the GPU performance by up to 60 percent. It can also lower the power consumption by up to 30 percent.

Game test

AnTuTu and Geekbench score of Honor Play
AnTuTu and Geekbench score of Honor Play

This device runs with the same Kirin 970 octa-core processor found on some high-end phones. It is clocked at 2.36GHz. It also has a dedicated NPU which handles AI tasks. Moreover, the Honor 10 has at least 4GB RAM for smoother gaming and multiasking and and 64GB expandable storage to store a lot of files.
Mobile Legends
Mobile Legends

The GPU Turbo has support for two major game titles, the PUBG Mobile and Mobile Legends: Bang Bang. Soon, other games will be added.
PUBG max settings
PUBG max settings

In our experience it was able to run both Mobile Legends and and PUBG Mobile at the highest settings possible. We never experienced lags and frame drops even after more than 30 minutes of straight usage.
NBA 2K18, max settings, no problem
NBA 2K18, max settings, no problem

We also tested it on a heavy game without GPU Turbo support like NBA 2K18. The result? Still very smooth overall even on max settings.

What more if it has support for GPU Turbo already?

By the way, the half hour of play only conserved 7 percent of battery which is great.

Thermal management is also great as expected from a Kirin 970 powered device.

Other gaming features

4D gaming experience
4D gaming experience

The Honor Play also has a big 6.3-inch notch screen. It has 2340 x 1080 resolution at 409 ppi sharp. It has good colors, contrast, and viewing angles for an immersive experience.

For those who do not like the notch, there is an option in the display settings for you to hide it.

It also has smart resolution mode which automatically lower the screen resolution when needed to help save power.

For audio, Honor also added a 7.1 3D Histen audio channel technology designed for gaming.

They also added included a "4D gaming experience" with real-time recognition of the game scene. The phone will intelligently vibrate to match up to 30 scenes.

It also has AI game mode for uninterrupted gaming.


So far, GREAT! The Honor Play is a LEGIT gaming-grade smartphone for less.

Personally, I think that it can compete even with some of the more expensive smartphones that's designed for gaming.

For us, it is arguably the best affordable gaming phone in the world yet.

That's it for now. 
Stay tuned for our full review!
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