Honor 5X - a mid-range smart phone for the smart people

Are you looking for a mid-range smartphone that will meet all your requirements for an aggressive smartphone user? Take a look at our this review of Huawei Honor 5X recently launched in India.

My wife has been using an iPhone 4 since last 5~6 years. During this period, I have changed 3 Android phones. Every time I bought a new phone, she tried to grab it but returned to me saying her Apple device is better. She has tried many of the review phones I received as well but nothing pleased her either due to excessive pricing or since it didn't beat the quality of the iPhone. Last few months her iPhone has been giving some issues and she was scouring the online market for days, trying to find her dream phone. Apple gave an option to replace the damaged phone with a new device of the same model at a service charge of Rs 12,000 but it wasn't worth paying so much to get a discontinued model.

So, she had to make a choice - whether to pay Rs 12,000 to Apple and get a replacement unit of the discontinued model or go for a brand new Android phone. Buying the latest iPhone was beyond the budget. She has been researching the smartphones in the price range of Rs 15,000 to Rs 20,000 and she learned quite a bit about all the devices available in the market. It was then I received a Huawei Honor 5X and she was the first person to look at the device. She was very impressed with the quality, pricing and other equations of Honor 5X and it did really fit her requirements. In fact, it was love at first sight.

What makes Honor 5X a great mid-range smartphone?

So, what is there in Honor 5X that impresses the ones who don't settle for less? Let's take a look.

The Huawei Honor 5x is a low-cost powerful phone which features Android 5.1.1 Lollipop at a price of Rs.12,000. It is one of the few phones in this price range to feature a fingerprint unlocking system. It has a 2GB RAM and 16 GB storage space which can be extended up to 128 GB with a Micro or Nano SD card. It has 3 slots, 2 for SIM cards and 1 for Micro or Nano SD card. It has a 3000 mAH battery with SmartPower 3.0, something that is not commonly seen in many devices these days, especially in this price range. According to the company test reports, the battery lasts more than a day with heavy usage.


The Huawei Honor 5x has many great features, but in my opinion, its greatest thing to brag about is its camera. It features a 13 megapixel, 28 mm wide angle lens back camera for decent photography and a 5 megapixel 22 mm wide-angle lens front camera for selfie lovers, with many extra options such as beauty effects that will surely impress modern casual photographers. Some of its camera options are:

  • Food mode that lets you capture pictures of food with stunning colors and realism

  • Time-lapse mode to capture photos intervals that can be compiled into short videos.

  • Slow motion mode to capture video at 120 fps to enable playback at four-times slower than real life.

  • Perfect selfie mode and "demist" filter.

  • Other options such as ultra-snapshot, watermarks and more are also included

  • Its combination of 2 GB RAM and a Qualcomm® 64-bit Octa-core processor ensures that it produces high performance while using low power with the 64 bit Snapdragon big.LITTLE octa-core processor. This ensures high-quality gameplay and also is able to run 3D games easily with a PC-Grade CPU. The Honor 5x also provides a Pixel-by-pixel dynamic contrast adjustment feature for improved contrast under different lighting conditions and visibility through the glare. It provides a 1920 x 1080 pixel, 16.7 million colors, full HD IPS display with improved color reproduction and viewing angles. The phone features a non-removable Li-ion 3000 mAh battery and comes in white, black and gold colors. It has loads of features like:

    - Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic
    - MP3/WAV/eAAC+/Flash player
    - MP4/H.265 player
    - Document viewer
    - Photo/video editor

    What's in the box?

    The blue box with Huawei logo includes the following:
    Elegant, Huawei branded white charger
    SIM removal pin
    Standard micro-USB cable

    Premium feel

    Even though Honor 5X is a mid-range phone, it comes with a premium feel with its metallic body and high-quality exterior look. Other than the front camera, speaker, and the sensors, the front portion is quite plain with its tough glass surface. There is not much metallic body visible in the front. The brushed metal finish gives a very premium look to the phone. It gives a good grip in your hand and you don't have to worry about slipping it off from your hand easily. On the back, you will see the 13-megapixel camera, the fingerprint scanner, and the engraved Honor logo.

    On the right side, it has the power buttons as well as the volume control. The 2 SIM trays are on the left side - one for the regular SIM and another one for the nano-SIM and micro SD card. Those who need dual-SIM option, Honor 5X is a good choice.

    Card slots

    Honor 5X is the first phone from the company that features a nano-SIM, micro-SIM, and microSD card slots - all in the same device, which offers improved compatibility over dual nano-SIM devices. Both the SIM cards can be used for data access. the microSD card allows to extend up to 128Gb.

    4G support: 4G SIM card can be inserted into either of the SIM card slots, thus giving support for the 4G technology.

    Operating System

    I'm a big fan of plain Android OS and I usually prefer smartphones without any customized layer on top of Android. However, Huawei's Emotion UI (EM UI) is not a game stopper for me. It's pretty intuitive and doesn't slow down the device with any fancy features. If you are familiar with any Android phone, you can pretty quickly figure out how to do the standard actions in EM UI. The EM UI comes with a few default themes that can be used to give a fresh look to your device when you get bored of the look.


    Honor has a very bright 5.5 inch full HD, LCD IPS display with a resolution of 1080x1920px. The quality of the display is very good and it gives pretty good visibility even in direct sunlight. On a phone in this price range, you can't expect the Corning Gorilla Glass 4 and so I'm not really comparing the IPS display with the Gorilla Glass. It has a 72.5% Screen/Body ratio.


    I don't want to compare the Honor 5X with the workhorse devices that are available at the price range of Rs 40,000 to Rs 60,000 but it does perform well compared to many other devices in the price range of Rs 15,000 to Rs 20,000. I never felt any lag in any of the applications including some of the games my son installed and tested for me! We can't expect anything less from its octa-core Snapdragon 616 CPU. I didn't really try any CPU intensive hardcore games though.

    Detailed Technical Specification

    CPU Kernel: Octa-Core
    CPU Frequency: 4x1.5GHz+4x1.2GHz
    CPU Model: Qualcomm Snapdragon 616
    GPU Model: Adreno 405
    Color options: Gold, white, and gray
    LCD Size: 5.5 inches
    Resolution: 1920 x 1080 pixels
    LCD Color: 16.7 million
    Dimentions: 151.3 mm * 76.3mm * 8.15mm
    PPI: 400ppi
    Battery Capability: 3000 mAh
    Camera: Rear camera:13 MP, Front camera:5 MP
    Photo Resolution: Rear camera: 4160 x 3120 pixels
    Network Rate: LTE FDD:B2/B4/B5/B12/B17 WCDMA:B1/B2/B4/B5 GSM:850/900/1800/1900MHz
    Single/Double Card: Dual SIM cards
    Single/Double Standby: Dual Standby
    Single/Double Pass: Single pass
    GPS Supported
    Glonass: Supported
    AGPS: Supported
    Bluetooth : Bluetooth 4.1
    NFC: Not supported
    ROM: 16GB
    RAM : 2GB
    SD Card Type: microSD
    External Memory Support: 128GB
    OS(Android): Android 5.1.1
    EMUI: EMUI 3.1
    Weight: About 158 g (including the battery)

    What I like most in Honor 5X

    What I like most about the 5X are:

    1. The elegant metallic body
    2. Fingerprint scanner
    3. High performing processor
    4. Dual SIM with 4G/microSD support
    5. Good camera

    What's missing in Honor 5X

    It's a mid-range smartphone and some of the high-end features like NFC are not available. The Android Marshmallow is not there yet but a future upgrade is possible. The Quick Charge feature is also not available. There is no removable battery but that is now a standard in most of the modern smartphones.

    Article by Tony John
    Tony John is a professional blogger from India, who started his first Weblog in 1998 at Tripod.com. Tony switched to blogging as a passion blended business in the year 2000 and currently operates several popular web properties including IndiaStudyChannel.com, Techulator.com, dotnetspider.com and many more.

    Follow Tony John or read 698 articles authored by Tony John

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