Huawei released two budget phones recently. We reviewed the $199 Huawei Y5 2017 here, and now we’re diving into the $299 Huawei Y7. Apparently this is the first Y7, so it doesn’t need the year tag in the model name.
So, fifty per cent higher price, eh? Does it give you fifty per cent more?
Let’s see. To take one mathematically satisfying example, the rear camera has a 12 megapixel sensor. The one on the Y5 has an 8 megapixel sensor. Fifty per cent more! The front camera is 8MP vs 5MP, so that’s sixty per cent more!
More realistically, what you get is a phone that looks a lot more like a mid-level, even premium-level, model than the Y5. It has a metal back and 2.5D glass on the front. That means it curves smoothly at the edges for mounting into the bezel without a lip around it. There is no mention of the type of glass used. It comes with a screen protector already attached. I left it in place during this review.
The screen is a 5.5 inch HD unit, which is to say the resolution is 720 by 1280 pixels.
The phone looks great. There is a rear camera bump, but it’s only a half a millimetre or so. There are two speakers on the bottom end, either side of the of the Micro-B USB socket. It’s available in Grey, Prestige Gold, and Silver.
There’s a 3.5mm headphone socket on the top and volume and power keys on the right. Unlike the Y5, there’s no assignable “Easy Key”. There is a proper tray for the SIMs and memory card
The soft return key is to the left at the bottom of the screen, apps to the right. Likewise, the home button is on screen, rather than physical, and there’s no fingerprint scanner. It’s this omission that more than anything sets this camera into the budget category.
Well, one other thing perhaps. The phone sports only 16GB of storage, of which less than 10GB is left over for the user after OS requirements. Fortunately, the phone can support a microSD card of up to 128GB.
It also supports two SIMs, but you’ll have to leave out the second one if you want to use the memory card. But since only 3G is supported on the second SIM, you may not be bursting to use it. (Nice, though, to have the option.)
The phone runs an MSM8940 octa-core processor with four 1.4GHz and four 1.1GHz cores. It has 2GB of RAM. It is loaded with Android Nougat 7.0 and runs Huawei’s EMUI5.1 interface (both of those are a version up from what’s in the Y5).
The standard LTE bands are supported when you’re out and about. Locally the WiFi is single band, with up to the 802.11n standard, while Bluetooth is version 4.1.
The battery is a biggie: 4000mAh.