Huawei has released a slew of devices as of late, and the nova 4 is one of them. The phone in itself is actually kind of unique. It’s one of the first phones to adopt the punchhole front camera set up. With it being first to market with the concept, is that all the merit the phone has to offer? Sit back, and check out our review of the nova 4.
Attractive Design And Screen
The device before anything, honestly looks stunning. The punchhole camera display makes the screen look full. There’s nothing getting in your way, except a little dot in the top right corner. But it’s honestly not that noticeable. The 86% screen ratio you’re getting in return just looks great. This might be my favourite iteration of the front display camera I have seen yet.
The phone has a glass black with a glossy finish and metal frame body. I got the blue colour nova 4 and it does look attractive. I do however, prefer a plain matte black or silver colour, but to each their own. The phone feels good in hand and that’s pretty much it in that regard. The phone has bottom facing speakers, a volume rocker and power button on the right, and sim card tray on the left. It also has the often forsaken headphone jack on the top of the phone. This was a good move to keep it in, most people still rely on that handy little ‘feature’.
Performance and Benchmarks:
The nova 4 runs Huawei’s own software, EMUI 9 on top of Android 9 Pie. There’s a lot of different features in the phone including gesture support, battery optimization, and phone manager which allows to check on different aspects of the phone. In terms of UI and general usability, it was alright. With the amount of bloatware and things I would never use, pre-installed on the phone, it just made things a hassle.
I personally really dislike bloatware and prefer phones with Stock or as close to Stock Android as possible. This being said, it ran well enough for the price. The nova 4 comes equipped with a 3750 mAh battery. This which it possible to last the whole day with moderate-heavy usage.
But for a budget or mid-level smartphone, nova 4 performs relatively well without any lag or crashes. With a Kirin 970 GPU, the phone ran smoothly and can take multiple apps running at the same time.
Fullscreen Gaming and Entertainment; Just So Good
Because of that Punchhole display, games and all sorts of media just look great on the phone. The nova 4 has a Full HD 6.4″ IPS LCD display and that creates an experience unlike any other. Because of the small dot of a camera on the left side of the phone, the screen looks great. If you’re used to a notch, or even an older phone, this will seem like something out of the future. Something to consider about the screen, is that content can be cut off. Mobile Legends blacked out the camera so it’s not actually in fullscreen. Check out the pictures below to see what I mean. Some games will however, let you play the game in fullscreen. Check out the picture below of Brawl Stars and how good it looks with just a full display, and a tiny dot in the bottom left corner.
However something I noticed while using the phone was it started to overheat. While playing games, watching videos and other intensive activities, the phone would start to heat up. It wasn’t blazing hot till not being able to touch it, but it was uncomfortable enough for me to have to put down the phone for a while. This was disappointing but I suppose is to be expected with a phone that costs RM 1899. Huawei would have had to bring save somewhere, and here it seems that heat dissipation was it.
Triple AI Camera:
The rear shooters feature a 20 mega-pixel, F/1.8 aperture + 16 mega-pixel, F/2.2 aperture + 2 mega-pixel, F/2.4 aperture. The triple camera setup comes up with some pretty good looking photos. But I’ll let you come up with that verdict yourselves. Check out the photos I took with the nova 4, some of events I attended, and others just to take pictures. Not the best in low light conditions, as you can see from the bottom photos of the Epson and Yoodo event. There’s a little noise, but still a solid shooter for the price.
It wasn’t able to capture the picture as well as I’d hoped, but that could also because of the bright screen behind him. Otherwise this was a solid shooter, and took some pretty high quality pictures. I used the phone to cover events and other things I thought would look nice.
Overall, I would recommend this phone to just about anyone. It does a lot of good things, but not anything breathtaking. The screen is something that really stands out with the device, but other companies will be coming to adapt the form factor as well. The cameras are pretty good , and for the price performed better than I expected. Something to consider is that most smartphones these days will get the job done. So if you don’t mind the bloatware, the phone getting hot, or not all apps supporting the screen. You should check this phone out.
Single core – 1775
Multi core – 6309
Antutu score – 197042
Price: RM 1899
Screen: 6.4″ (~86.0% screen-to-body ratio) 1080 x 2310 pixels (~398 ppi density )LTPS IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen
Memory and Storage: 8 GB RAM + 128 GB ROM
Front camera: 25 mega-pixel, F/2.0 aperture
Rear camera: 20 mega-pixel, F/1.8 aperture + 16 mega-pixel, F/2.2 aperture + 2 mega-pixel, F/2.4 aperture
Battery: 3750 mAh
Dimensions: 75 mm x 157 mm x 7 mm (w x h x d) / Weight 172g
Chipset: Hisilicon Kirin 970
Huawei Nova 4
The nova 4 does a lot of good things, but not anything breathtaking.