- Camera struggles in low light situations
- Some stuttering on graphics intensive games
- Plastic body slippery to hold
Launched alongside their flagship P9 smartphone, Huawei also released the P9 Lite. As the name suggests, it is an affordable version of the original that sacrifices some features for the sake of lowering the cost. For example, instead of an aluminum unibody it comes with a polycarbonate back with an aluminum frame. Despite having mostly a plastic body, the P9 Lite weights 147 grams, which is 4 grams heavier than the P9. The rounded edges and corners provided reviewers with a nice hand feel, but the slippery back made it difficult to grip.
The 5.2-inch screen offers a resolution of 1080p for full HD clarity. Critics found it to be vibrant, saturated and bright with excellent viewing angles thanks to the use of IPS technology. Huawei also uses InCell technology for almost zero gap between the glass and display. Speaking of glass, unlike many other smartphones, the P9 Lite glass is regular glass and not Gorilla Glass.
Keeping the P9 Lite running is an octa-core processor clocked at 2GHz and 3 GB of RAM. Although the processor isn’t top-of-the-line, combined with the RAM critics found it relatively quick during everyday usage. They didn’t notice any lag when opening or switching between apps.
The only time it suffered was when they played graphics intensive games on max settings. Even then, they point to the graphics card as the cause for the stutters and not the processor. Android Pit states, “With the P9 Lite, Huawei has built a very well balanced package of performance, power consumption and heat output…Only gamers should think twice before picking one up.” Even more impressive than its performance was its battery life. Critics were able to get over 10 hours with moderate use.
The most notable aspect missing from the P9 Lite is the lack of dual lens found on the P9. Instead, there’s a single 13MP rear camera with no optical image stabilization. This didn’t present too much of a problem when reviewers tested out the camera in bright light situations. Most of the images were quite sharp in good lighting conditions. However, the quality quickly dipped once light decreased leading to distortions. It does come with a Pro mode so users can adjust the ISO, exposure time, white balance and focus for better image quality.
For the price, reviewers have no problem recommending the P9 Lite to non-power users. Notebook Check states, “Huawei has a strong mid-range smartphone in its lineup that does many things…” Pocket Lint adds, “Fair price, fair performance and more than fair design lead the way here…”