That we are a part of the digital era has been long established. Technology has become more than an integral part of our existence. So much so that in today’s digital world, even smartphone have ‘siblings’. While the trend hasn’t caught on majorly, there are a few brands that tend to launch a lighter variant of their flagship smartphones. Take Huawei, for instance, that created quite a stir when it launched its Huawei P20 Pro smartphone – first to boast of a triple rear camera set up. Along with the P20 Pro, the company also launched the P20 Lite. As the name suggests, it is the younger sibling of the more powerful P20 Pro. While it certainly doesn’t have three cameras at the back, the P20 Lite does have some impressive specifications on paper. But do those on paper specs translate into actual good performance? Read our review to find out the answer.
Huawei P20 Lite Design
The P20 Lite is a neat and clean phone that has a glass body encompassed in an aluminium frame. There’s an almost 80 per cent screen-to-body ratio. It’s compact and easy to use with the curved edges helping it immensely in how the phone feels in one’s hand. You won’t see any antenna lines at the back and even the front is almost bezel-less.
Having a glass back panel does give the P20 Lite a premium look but as is the case with this design aspect, it is a fingerprint magnet. At the front, there is a notch on the 5.84-inch display but it’s relatively smaller. Mercifully, there’s an option to ‘turn off’ the notch.
At the back, there is a vertical dual camera set up along with a fingerprint sensor which works absolutely fine. There’s a hybrid dual-SIM tray on the left of the smartphone whereas the right side sees the power and volume buttons. In terms of design, the P20 Lite does manage to stand out from the crowd, largely because of its glass body.
Huawei P20 Lite Display
For a compact phone, the P20 Lite does manage to pack in a 5.84-inch full HD+ display. It offers 19:9 aspect ratio and comes with pixel density of 432ppi. While it’s not a display that will dazzle you, the P20 Lite gets it right in most aspects. The viewing angles are remarkably good and the 19:9 aspect ratio plays a vital role in it. Colours are vibrant and bright and there were no complaints with it while using under direct sunlight. The notch is there but as we said you can turn it off and its hardly a hindrance or barely noticeable because of its small size. To be honest, it does feel like a forced addition but we can’t have any complaints as it doesn’t hamper the display of the P20 Lite. One can watch videos or play games and the display responds very well. The display, in our opinion, is one of the better features of the smartphone.
Huawei P20 Lite Performance
Huawei’s phones have never set the world on fire nor you’ll find anyone complaining about them either. They’re reliable and boast of specifications that mostly deliver more than satisfactory performance. It’s the same with the P20 Lite. It is – like other Huawei and Honor smartphones – powered by Huawei’s own HiSilicon Kirin 659 processor. There’s 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage (expandable via SD card).
The smartphone runs Android 8.0 Oreo out-of-the-box skinned by Huawei’s custom EMUI 8.0. We really aren’t fans of custom UIs as they bring their fair share of bloatware. EMUI 8.0 isn’t any different in that sense as you get a lot of game demos, UC Browser pre-loaded but they can be uninstalled. Having said that, Huawei’s EMUI is slightly better than the ones around and it’s clear that it has become better.
For starters, it’s much faster than what we have experienced in the past and has added a lot of new features. There’s an intelligent messages app which automatically filters out ‘spam’ type of messages. A new addition is Wi-Fi+ which sees if your Wi-Fi is faster or mobile data and then automatically switches between the two. It also has gestures like three-finger swipe will help take a screenshot. Face recognition has caught on like wildfire and as expected its found in Huawei P20 Lite as well. It works quite fine on most occasions barring once or twice in low-lit conditions.
The Huawei P20 Lite delivers sufficiently good enough performance. There are no heating issues and most day-to-day tasks are handled quite adeptly. The Kirin 659 processor does its job admirably when it comes to multitasking and there are no noticeable lags or stutters.
We ran a couple of performance tests on the Huawei P20 Lite. It scored 87679 on Antutu while it recorded scores of 937 (single core) and 3678 (multi core) on Geekbench.
Huawei P20 Lite Camera Performance
There’s a dual rear camera set up in the P20 Lite which has a 16MP primary sensor with an aperture of f/2.2 along with a 2MP depth sensor. There’s a single LED flash to go along with the two cameras at the back. The camera app on the smartphone comes with the routine modes like Panorama, Pro, Night Shot and Time-Lapse. There’s also the added feature of AR stickers in the Huawei P20 Lite’s camera app.
The images we clicked in broad daylight with the P20 Lite managed to impress us quite a bit. There’s a lot of detailing and accuracy is also spot on. The depth-of-field effect is highlighted quite well in the images clicked. It’s the case with most Huawei/Honor smartphones’ camera that low-light images aren’t really that great. With the P20 Lite, there is a considerable amount of improvement in low-light shots. There’s less noise and detailing is fairly alright but nothing that will leave you impressed.
The 24MP front camera clicks suitably good images in daylight but falters a bit when you shift the action to dimly lit conditions. Surprisingly, there’s no flash that accompanies the front camera.
Huawei P20 Lite Battery performance
The smartphone is backed by a 3000mAh battery which does its job reasonably well. If you’ve a smartphone that lasts about 10-12 hours with medium to heavy usage, then it’s safe to categorise the battery performance as acceptable. The Huawei P20 Lite falls in that category as we didn’t have too many complaints with its battery barring one. Huawei could have added fast charging support as it takes a fair amount of time to fully charge the device.
Huawei P20 Lite Verdict
For Rs 19,990, the Huawei P20 Lite is a smartphone that will generate curiosity but might not impress the lot. This is partly down to its looks and display as the camera doesn’t really get you excited. There aren’t faults with its performance but somehow the smartphone falls short of being the ‘real deal’. A part of it is also down to the fact that there are slightly lower-priced handsets that have similar – or better – features. The Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro is a good example of being a lesser-priced phone which could match the P20 Lite. With Motorola about to enter the segment with its new G series of smartphones, the battle on Huawei’s hands is about to get uphill. The P20 Lite is a smartphone that we do recommend but do check out competition as well as you might just find a better deal.
|Huawei P20 Lite Specifications|