First Look: HUAWEI nova 2 lite

Thanks to Huawei, I am able to get a quick run through of the HUAWEI nova 2 lite handset (for a few days) before its launch. The 5.99-inch, Dual rear camera HUAWEI nova 2 lite will be available in black from 15th March 2018 at an RRP of S$298.

As mentioned, I only have it for a few days and the set that I have did not even have the actual box for the Singapore market. Hence, there will be no unboxing of this device.

Here is the physical look of the HUAWEI nova 2 lite.

First Look

Front

Do note that I did not remove the protective layer on the screen. In my opinion, if you don’t mind, you can use it to prevent scratches on your screen.

On the top, you can see the 8 MPX camera and a few typical sensors. there is no physical button on the front.

Back

On the back, there are the 2 rear cameras (13 MPX + 2MPX) and the fingerprint sensor on the upper middle of the back.

Here is a close up of the rear cameras arranged horizontally (with a flash next to it)

Top

On the top, it is clean.

Bottom

On the bottom, you have the 3.5mm earphone jack, the Micro USB port (for charging and data transfer), a microphone and speakers.

Side

On the side, it has the rocker volume button and the on/off button.

On this side, it is clean.

Usage

General

The HUAWEI nova 2 lite comes with Android 8.0 (Oreo) and EMUI 8.0. These are the latest software from Huawei.

Nowadays, the primary usage of the phone is no longer basic phone feature like phone call. It usually revolves around the UX (user experience) of the software, camera, games and etc.

If you are familiar with Huawei UI (User Interface), it will be a breeze to use it. With 3GB and 32GB of internal memory, it should be enough for average use. If you need more storage, you can add a MicroSD card (up to 256GB).

The nova 2 lite comes with 3,000mAh battery. In my opinion, I feel that Huawei software is able to optimize the battery life well. During the review, there is no complain about the battery life but as I only use it for a few days, please take it with a pinch of salt.

Camera

The HUAWEI nova 2 lite comes with 2 rear cameras (13 MPX + 2 MPX). As with the current trend, everyone is into taking picture with great DOF (Depth of Field). On Huawei phone, it is called the Aperture Mode. Here are 3 pictures (non-processed) combined into one to fit this blog post. From left to right, aperture setting is 1, 4 and 7 respectively.

Here is how you adjust the aperture.

In my opinion, you can forget about using Aperture 1 unless you really want that fake DOF (Depth of Field). For Aperture mode, I suggest you use it sparingly for the best effect because, in some circumstances and lighting, it does not work well.

Here are a few more pictures using the Aperture Mode.

When it comes to strong backlight, the camera cannot perform. Everything appears flat. For your info, I am pointing towards the sun to capture the ray of lights deflected from the leaves. Apparently, it does not work here.

Flash

I am actually quite impressed with the results of using flash. Usually, I will not use any flash on phone camera as they do not produce good results.

Portrait Mode (beauty mode)

And last but not least, I tested out the portrait mode (beauty mode) set to the highest level. I just woke up and trust me, the original is unusable. Haha.

I have one complaint about the camera resolution setting. Why is there no 16:9 setting? (same as on the Mate 10 Pro too). Sometimes, I would like to insert pictures into a 16:9 video. If I were to take it at 18:9, some of it will be cropped. I really don’t like it.

Special Mode

This is something interesting I found on the OS (It is not available on the Huawei Mate 10 Pro). It is the Rider Mode.

The icon is a helmet as shown below (the last icon on the last row). You can go to setting to adjust the settings.

Unfortunately, I did not try the “Ride tracking) feature. I think it will be interesting. If you have tried it, do let me know.

Summary

At S$298 price point, I think that the HUAWEI nova 2 lite is value for money. It has the latest Android OS and Huawei EMUI with decent cameras.

Design-wise, I think that it is not bad looking. It doesn’t look cheap and built-wise, I feel it is OK for that price range. With dual SIM card slot, I am sure it will appeal to those who want to carry only one phone while having multiple SIM cards.

I urge you to check it out personally at the shops or IT Show to experience it for yourself.

Specifications

Here are the specs of the HUAWEI nova 2 lite

And read on for the Press Release.

Press Release

HUAWEI UNVEILS THE NEW NOVA 2 LITE – BIG PERFORMANCE AT GREAT VALUE

SINGAPORE, 13 March 2018 – Huawei Consumer Business Group has unveiled the latest HUAWEI nova 2 lite, a trendy new smartphone that boasts performance and affordability. Designed and engineered for fun and outgoing personalities, the HUAWEI nova 2 lite features an 8-megapixel (MP) front camera with selfie toning flash, as well as a dual-lens rear camera. The HUAWEI nova 2 lite will be making its debut at the IT Show on 15 March 2018, and will be available in Black at S$298. HUAWEI nova 2 lite (Blue) will be available from end-March 2018.

Double the Cameras, for a Greater Photography Experience

The HUAWEI nova 2 lite brings pictures to life with its 13MP+2MP dual rear camera, accompanied by a stunning wide aperture that allows users to control the amount of light entering the camera lens. The 13MP camera is predominantly used to take photos while the 2MP camera offers a Bokeh effect with up to 7 aperture levels to choose from. The HUAWEI nova 2 lite also allows users to refocus photos after capturing them.

The front of the HUAWEI nova 2 lite features an impressive 8MP camera with advanced selfie toning flash, which automatically detects the light on someone’s face and intelligently adjusts the brightness for a natural-looking selfie. This means that the flash can produce flattering soft light under low-light or even pitch black conditions.

Both front and rear cameras support different Augmented Reality modes; giving users the option of altering their backgrounds, donning on cute outfits or even turning themselves into various cosplay characters. These features certainly make photography even more fun.

Capture Priceless Memories, Without Breaking the Bank

While the HUAWEI nova 2 lite may be the entry-level smartphone in the Nova series, it certainly does not compromise on performance. The HUAWEI nova 2 lite offers an impressive 5.99-inch HUAWEI FullView Display and has the largest screen-to-body ratio in its class. This means that the stunning 18:9 aspect ratio delivers a truly immersive widescreen viewing experience for all. The 8MP front camera with selfie toning flash will entice even the most camera-shy individual to embrace his or her selfie-taking impulses, allowing anyone to take Instagram-worthy selfies, day or night. It also comes preloaded with EMUI 8.0 for a seamless and more intelligent user experience.

Intelligence Runs in the Family

The HUAWEI nova 2 lite introduces Face Unlock – a high-precision facial recognition technology that is powered by an AI algorithm to automatically detect up to 1,024 points on the human face and perform high-accuracy mapping. This neat feature lets users unlock their screens in less than 900 milliseconds using facial recognition. The HUAWEI nova 2 lite also has a party trick for singing enthusiasts – Karaoke Mode. This feature enables users to hear their own voice when singing into the microphone on their headsets, akin to being in a recording studio.

Availability

The HUAWEI nova 2 lite comes with a 2-year local warranty and is available for sale from 15 March 2018 at the following retail locations:

  • IT SHOW 2018: Booths 8139 & 8205
  • All Huawei Concept Stores
  • Telcos: M1, Singtel and StarHub Stores Island-wide
  • E-commerce: Lazada.sg and Qoo10.sg
  • All Major Consumer Electronic Stores (Best Denki, Courts, Harvey Norman and Sprint Cass) and all Huawei Authorised Resellers

Pricing

RRP – S$298

About Huawei Consumer BG

Huawei’s products and services are available in more than 170 countries, and are used by a third of the world’s population, ranking second in the world for mobile phone shipments in 2017. 16 R&D centers have been set up in the United States, Germany, Sweden, Russia, India and China. Huawei Consumer BG is one of Huawei’s three business units and covers smartphones, PC and tablets, wearables and cloud services, etc. Huawei’s global network is built on almost 30 years of expertise in the telecom industry and is dedicated to delivering the latest technological advances to consumers around the world.

Note (updated on 14-Mar): Press Release date changed from February to March. Sorry for the confusion.