Now that they’re out from under former parent company Huawei’s shadow, Honor is free to move all the way into premium territory, shedding the budget image they started out with. That extends to looks as much as hardware — the new Honor Magic4 series smartphones have all the specs you’d hope for, with a sleek look and that very distinctive rear camera array. They didn’t skimp on the accessories, either, with some very nice options available in their Honor Watch GS 3 line.
The Honor Magic4 and Magic4 Pro differ in some pretty subtle ways. They’re both the same size, with 6.81″ displays — looks like they differ mostly in their camera arrays, although the Pro does have a couple other exclusive tricks.
On the back, the Pro’s telephoto camera (one of three) has a 64 MP sensor with 100x digital zoom, compared to an 8 MP sensor with 50x zoom on the base model (but, worth noting the base model features 5x optical zoom compared to 3.5x optical zoom on the Pro). On the front, the Pro has a second 3D depth sensing camera that the base model lacks.
While the displays are the same — LTPO OLED displays with 120 Hz refresh rates that can emit 1,000 nits of brightness — the Pro model can upscale standard content to HDR and can hitch frame rates to refresh rates while gaming, making it a little better if you plan on doing some serious gaming on the go. Both will have fantastic color production, covering 100% of DCI-P3. They’re also both HDR10+ capable.
While the Pro model has a slightly smaller battery (4,600 mAh to the 4,800 mAh battery of the base model), Honor compensates by enabling 100W fast charging on the Pro model, which should get you to 100% in 30 minutes or 50% in 15 minutes. As long as you’ve got a charger that can provide that kind of juice, making it to the end of the day shouldn’t be a problem!
The Pro model is fully waterproof, with an IP68 rating. The base model gets an IP54 rating, making it water and dust resistant, but definitely not dunkable.
Both phones run on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 5G Mobile Platform with up to 12 GB of RAM and 512 GB of storage, so both will be 5G-ready. They also both benefit from Honor’s OS Turbo X Engine and GPU Turbo X Engine, which wring max performance out of the phone’s hardware as efficiently as possible, easing the strain on the battery.
Aside from the telephoto cameras we mentioned above, the phones both have 50 MP wide-angle cameras (f/1.8) and 50 MP ultra wide-angle cameras (f/2.2, with 122° field of vision). While that’ll get you some nice stills, Honor is focusing more on the phones’ video chops — they’re capable of 10-bit Log 4K video recording in 60fps, which should pique the interest of amateurs and pros alike who want to get the most from their smartphone camera in a pinch.
One last feature exclusive to the Pro model is a different sort of privacy feature. Using a Qualcomm 3D Sonic Sensor, the phone can actively gauge the volume of background noise and the volume of the voice of a person you’re on a call with. The phone will automatically adjust call volume accordingly, so if you’re in a quiet area with other people, the phone will quiet down to make sure that if anyone’s eavesdropping, at the very least they’ll only hear what you’re saying, and not the other person on the line!
Along with the two Honor Magic4 phones, Honor is introducing the Watch GS 3 line. These will all have 46 mm cases, so they’ll be on the larger side. The watch will have an AMOLED touchscreen display set in that case, and on the underside will have a PPG sensor that should improve heart rate detection. If you do use it as a fitness tracker, the Watch GS 3 will be able to log data for 100 different kinds of workouts, automatically detecting six of them (we’re guessing basics like running, biking, and swimming). If you’re a little further outdoors, the watch uses L1/L5 Dual Frequency GNSS to keep you oriented.
The three color options all look sharp. There’s one with a silver case and a dark blue nappa calfskin strap, one with a gold case with a brown nappa calfskin strap (a more classic look), and one with a black case and a black fluoroelastomer strap.
No pricing and availability information for anything yet, but we know the whole kit will also be dropping with the next generation of Honor’s true wireless earbuds, the Honor Earbuds 3 Pro. Also worth noting again that now that they aren’t under Huawei, Honor’s phones will have access to the full suite of Google services you usually get with an Android phone. The Honor Magic4 phones will be available in black, white, cyan, and gold. Keep an eye out for more information soon!