Honor 7X Review
Honor 7X price and release date
If you buy the Honor 7X in the UK (from Argos, Amazon, Very or the Honor store) you’ll get a free pair of headphones worth £69.99, although you’ll need to be quick as that offer is likely to be available for a limited time only. We don’t currently know if that deal will be available in other markets.
We also know that in the UK you’ll be able to buy the phone on contract from Three at the start of next year. Although we don’t know the exact release date.
Design and display
The Honor 7X features a full metal design that’s attractive, although the back of the phone is flat, so it doesn’t sit in the hand as comfortably as the Honor 6X did. It does make it thinner than a lot of other popular phones, at 4.6mm. If you’re looking for a slimline device this is an appealing option.
The back panel is metal, but it doesn’t have the same close-to-high-end feel as, say, the Nokia 6. Despite the overall finish on the Honor 7X, the metal doesn’t feel as satisfying as when you’re holding the glass-backed Honor 9.
The fingerprint sensor is located on the rear or the handset, and we found it easy to reach when holding the phone.
That scanner tech works quickly, but if you’ve got the phone on your desk it’s generally quicker to enter your PIN or unlock pattern on the screen than it is to pick the phone up so you can hit the sensor.
On the bottom edge of the device is a 3.5mm headphone jack, which is welcome if you use wired headsets. You’ll find the micro USB port and speaker grille there too.
Honor is toting the 7X’s display as a major upgrade, and it’s certainly impressive that the company has managed to squeeze an almost 6-inch display into a body that would traditionally accommodate a 5.5-inch screen.
The 5.93-inch screen extends closer to the sides of the device than some other phones; it’s not as attractive as the way the iPhone X or Samsung Galaxy S8 adopt the 18:9 aspect ratio, but that’s to be expected considering this phone is much cheaper.
We found the screen to be bold and vibrant with a high resolution. It isn’t as impressive as the screens on a lot of flagship devices, with a Full HD+ 2160 x 1080 resolution equating to 408 pixels per inch, but it’s a very good display considering the mid-range price of this phone.
That resolution is the same as you get on the more expensive OnePlus 5T, but comparing the two phones side by side you can see that the Honor is a little dimmer, and doesn’t have the vibrancy of the OnePlus.
One irritation with the screen is that most apps will default to the 16:9 screen ratio, and you’ll see blue notification at the bottom of the screen, prompting you to tap to switch to full-screen mode.
It feels like an unnecessary step when we wanted to use all apps with the 18:9 display. For example, when setting up a watch within the Android Wear app we tapped the option to switch to full-screen mode, and part-way through the setup process it rebooted the app and kicked us back to the start.
We didn’t find any apps that wouldn’t embrace the extended screen, but you’ll have to wait a few seconds for apps to reboot when you press that button, which isn’t very helpful when a lot of other devices do this by default.
Interface and reliability
The Honor 7X uses It’s own Emotion UI 5.1 software. Which provides a skin over the top of Android 7 Nougat.
We’ve yet to learn when the phone will get upgraded to Android 8 Oreo. But we’ve asked Honor and hopefully we’ll hear more soon.
Right now Android 7 software is okay. And it’ll quickly start to feel dated if the phone isn’t upgraded soon.
We found the Emotion UI 5 software worked well. But it’s a shame we don’t get the same software that’s supplied on other recent phones from Honor’s parent company Huawei, such as the Mate 10 or the Mate 10 Pro.
We found it easy to navigate around the phone. You’re still getting some of the latest features with Android 7. Such as multi-window support and the ability to directly reply to texts and emails within the notification bar.
Movies, music and gaming
The larger screen ratio on the Honor 7X makes it great for watching movies. But with some video apps, you’ll need to press the full-screen display button mentioned earlier to get the whole picture on the screen.
Once you’ve done that, you’re treated to a big screen for watching a video without having to grapple with a relatively large and unwieldy phone. Despite the screen only being Full HD, the picture quality and vivid images make this a great phone to watch video on, especially for a mid-range device.
The speaker can be easy to cover with your hand if you’re watching video while holding the phone, and the audio quality isn’t anything to get excited about. It’s suitable for listening to podcasts or music, but you won’t be thrilled with the sound.
Check out the video below to hear our thoughts on the interface and media capabilities of the Honor 7X
You can also listen with wireless headsets, and we found the connection quality to be good. But it’s always useful to have the 3.5mm jack option too. Especially if you own a decent set of wired headphones already.
Gaming on the Honor 7X is a comfortable experience, with the widescreen looking sumptuous when you’re playing titles. But this phone won’t run more graphically-demanding games as smoothly as a lot of the top-end phones. And we did sometimes find it would stutter slightly.
If you’re looking to play top-end games on this phone. It may be worth spending a bit extra on something a bit more stable with more powerful internals, such as the Honor 9 or the OnePlus 5T.
That said, you’ll be able to play a lot of popular less-intensive games on the Honor 7X without experiencing any problems.
Performance and specs
Inside the Honor 7X there’s a Kirin 659 chipset and 4GB of RAM. Which is enough to run most games and apps smoothly. The 7X runs a little slower and not at such high quality as most flagship phones. But we found it was able to cope with everything we wanted to do on a daily basis.
We ran the phone through Geekbench 4, and it scored an average of 3579. Which is an improvement on the score of 3,105 that the Honor 6X achieved.
That’s a poor score, however, when compared to the Moto G5S Plus, which is a similar phone in terms of specs. The G5S Plus is a touch more expensive, but it came out with a score of 4,312. Which would make that phone a better choice if you’re planning to do lots of intensive tasks and gaming every day.
That said, the Honor 7X can still do everything you’d expect a phone like this to do it’s just a touch slower. You may have to wait a while longer for apps to load longer than if you’d spent a lot more money.
The built-in storage you’ll get will depend on where you live in the world. We know that in the UK you’ll get 64GB of storage while those in the US will only get 32GB. There’s microSD support on both versions up to 256GB though.
We’ve been using the 64GB version of the phone. And we found that a reasonable amount of space – the software only takes up 12.5GB. And it leaves a decent amount of space to play with and fill with apps, games and media.
It’s worth noting that if you want to use a second SIM card in the Honor 7X you won’t be able to use a microSD card at the same time, as it uses the same slot.
One of the big disappointments in the specs of the Honor 7X is the lack of an NFC sensor. It means you won’t be able to use Android Pay to make contactless payments.
|Release date||October 2017|
|Dimensions (mm)||156.50 x 75.30 x 7.60|
|Battery capacity (mAh)||3340|
|Colours||Black, Blue, Gold|
|Screen size (inches)||5.93|
|Processor make||HiSilicon Kirin 659|
|Expandable storage type||microSD|
|Expandable storage up to (GB)||256|
|Operating System||Android 7.0|
|Wi-Fi standards supported||802.11 b/g/n|
|Bluetooth||Yes, v 4.10|
|Number of SIMs||2|
|Supports 4G in India (Band 40)||Yes|
|Supports 4G in India (Band 40)||Yes|
|Ambient light sensor||Yes|