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HUAWEI HONOR 6 Plus hands-on and first impressions

We're taking a first look at the HUAWEI HONOR 6 Plus. It has premium hardware and smooth software, but how does it hold up to the competition? Let's find out!
January 27, 2015

We’ve seen the Chinese smartphone market become incredibly competitive over the last few years particularly when it comes to device manufacturers like Xiaomi, Lenovo and Samsung. One OEM that is really progressing in the market is HUAWEI, thanks to their inexpensive smartphones and very low prices. At CES 2015, the company surprised us with their launch of the Huawei HONOR 6 Plus. It’s super thin, has a great display, and boasts overall great hardware, but can it stand up to the competition? Let’s take a closer look at the HUAWEI HONOR 6 Plus.

The first thing we noticed about the device is its dual-glass front and back panels. The back panel is simple and quite understated, housing the subtle ‘Honor’ logo in the center, a rear-mounted speaker at the bottom-left and a dual 8MP camera setup towards the top-left of the device (we’ll take a closer look at the camera a bit later). While looking at the rest of the device, we can see that there are quite a few different design languages used around the chassis. The front and back panels are very similar to what we’ve seen on Sony’s Xperia line, while the metallic edges are very reminiscent of the iPhone 4 or 5.

Around the right side, the volume rocker, power/standby key, and 2 SIM card slots can be found. The bottom edge houses the Micro USB port. The 5.5-inch screen makes this device big, but not too big. It sits in the hand quite nicely and is very comfortable to hold for a long period of time.

We’ve had great luck with HUAWEI devices in the past, especially when it comes to performance. The HONOR 6 Plus is no exception. With the combination of the Cortex-A15 & Cortex-A7 HiSilicon Kirin 925 processors, a Mali-T628 GPU and 3GB of RAM, this device absolutely flies through the company’s Emotion UI. Just like most other iterations of the software, HUAWEI doesn’t include an app drawer, so you’ll need to depend on folders to get your screens organized. One of our favorite parts of the UI is the notification drop down menu, which displays notifications from most important to least important. Overall, the software is very colorful and bright at times, while still remaining minimalistic.

In addition to great performance while moving through the UI, the device has also performed well in performing multimedia-centric tasks thanks to a beefy processor and a beautiful 5.5-inh 1080p display that may not be QHD, but is still more than capable of providing a solid viewing experience. Some of the other specs include 16/32GB internal storage, microSD with expansion for up to 128GB additional storage, and 3600mAh battery.  Side note: The MicroSD card goes in the SIM 2 slot (Nano SIM slot), which could be a little confusing.

The cameras on this device is what really makes it stand out, as it boasts a similar camera setup to the HTCOne M8. Just like on the One M8, the HONOR 6 Plus houses two rear-facing 8MP sensors. One sensor is used to take the photo, while the other is used to gather depth information and refocusing purposes. The HONOR 6 Plus also has an 8MP front-facing camera, which has been treating us well so far. We’ll be putting this device’s camera through its paces, likely with a Camera Shootout feature video sometime in the future.

This device can be found in either Black or White variants from OPPOmart. The 3G-only model comes with 16GB of on-board storage, and the 4G-enabled model comes with either 16 or 32GB of storage. The 16GB model is running for around $429, and the 32GB model can be yours for $489.

Overall, the device has offered a premium hardware experience, fast software experience and a unique camera setup. We’re currently on our way to China, headed to take a tour of HUAWEI’s offices in Shenzhen. We’re going to take the HONOR 6 Plus with us on the trip, and we couldn’t be more excited to see how the device fairs as we check out how it’s made. Stay tuned for the HONOR 6 Plus Camera Shootout and full review in the coming weeks!