Huawei Honor 6: The fastest 4G Cat6 octa-core smartphone now in Malaysia

Amber Chia with the Honor 6

Amber Chia with the Honor 6

Huawei has been playing the value game rather well. Its budget-friendly sub-brand called Honor has redefined the budget smartphone segment with attractive industrial design and flagship-beating features. And now, it has unleashed the world’s first octa-core 4G LTE Cat6 smartphone – the Honor 6.

The Honor 6 was first launched in Beijing in June, and immediately garnered 7.7 million pre-orders in a span of a mere five days. The astonishing feat proves how attractive this device really is.

What’s clearly increasingly important in the smartphone market now is 4G LTE capabilities. As LTE gradually becomes more widely adopted, the demand for LTE-enabled phones increase in tandem.

Huawei Honor 6 Huawei Honor 6

Honor 6: pushing the mid-range envelope

The Honor 6 boasts LTE Cat6 and +3dB which theoretically supports downloads speeds of up to 300Mbps – an astonishing 14x faster than 3G. Of course, real world speeds will depend on network infrastructure and coverage.

The Honor 6 utilises Huawei’s own Kirin 920 processor, mated to a Mali-T628 MP6 GPU for outstanding graphics performance. The Kirin 920 chip is made up of four A15 and four A7 cores that can operate at ultra-low power – providing the performance you need, and power efficiency.

The mid-range device boasts some impressive specs – 3GB RAM, 16GB storage, 5-inch Full HD IPS display, 13MP BSI rear-facing camera (4th generation Sony Exmor) and a 5MP front-facing camera.

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Huawei touts the new camera module which boasts ultrafast capture, within 0.6 seconds, even with the device locked. The camera can be activated by clicking on the volume down button twice for an instant snap.

Build quality is excellent, with the unibody measuring just 7.5mm in thickness. The curved edges and slim profile makes it look more expensive than it really is. So much so it almost matches the quality of the high-priced, high-range flagship – the Ascend P7.

The Honor 6 runs Android 4.4 KitKat out of the box, with Huawei’s EMUI 2.3 on top.

As if not sufficiently packed with features already, the Honor 6 includes a whopping 3100mAh battery that completely overshadows the (also impressive) Honor 3C introduced earlier in April.

Huawei Honor Tablet

Honor Tablet

Huawei also launched its first Honor Tablet – an 8-inch Android tablet with 3G phone capabilities. The tablet is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon quad-core processor and integrates a brilliant 1280×800 HD IPS display. The entry level tablet supports 3G/HSPA data of up to 42Mbps.

A built-in 4800mAh battery allows for ten hours of video and gaming.

Huawei Honor 6

Pricing and availability

The Honor 6 will be available in black and white. Pre-orders of the Honor 6 start from 29 September till 14 October 2014. Stocks will be available from Vmall.my and Lelong.com.my from 16 October. Purchases from Vmall.my are entitled to a six-month 1-to-1 exchange warranty. The Honor 6 is priced at RM999. (US$306).

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The Honor Tablet will be available for pre-order from 29 September from Vmall.my. The Honor Tablet retails for RM599 (US$183).

Initial reactions

Riding on the success of the Honor 3C, Huawei has completely upped the ante with the Honor 6. It has stayed true to its promise of delivering quality to its customers, and it’s great to see the China brand paying attention to industrial design and build quality. The Honor 6 is impressive is many fronts, so much so that it muddies the difference between a mid-range and a flagship device.

In all honesty, it would be quite difficult to decide if you were to pit it against Huawei’s own top flagship – the Ascend P7.

It’s got everything you would want in a modern smartphone, and at under RM1,000, it’s a no brainer of a choice. Well done, Huawei, I think this is a winner.

The Honor Tablet isn’t much to shout about, but should fare quite well as an entry-level, pocket-friendly tablet for the masses.

Look out for the hands-on first impressions of the Honor 6.

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