Honor - Huawei's millenial-targeting brand for "digital natives" - has officially launched its latest flagship handset in the European market. The high-spec, low-cost Honor 8 will be available from selected online retailers from 24 August, starting £369.99 in the UK for the base 32GB model.
From a design point, the main talking point of the Chinese manufacturer's latest cut-price handset is its rather stunning finish, built from 15 layers of glass and set into a diamond-cut metal frame. The build creates an eye-catching prism line effect that certainly belies its budget price tag at a glance.
The 5.2in device sports a 1080p Full HD LTPS display and continues Huawei P9 and Honor 8's tradition of a dual-lens rear camera set-up. The 12 megapixel snapper comes with HDR, pro and slo-mo modes, laser auto-focus and a suite of filter effects intended to excite its "brave" customer base. An 8 megapixel front-facing camera is also present for the selfie-holics.
In terms of raw specs, the Honor 8 packs an octa-core Kirin 950 chipset that the OEM promises will consume less power than the Snapdragon 820 and other standard processors. 4GB of RAM, USB-C fast-charging tech, expandable storage up to 128GB via its microSD card slot and an impressive 3000mAh non-removable battery complete an enviable spec sheet for a smartphone that comes in below £400. The Honor 8 runs Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow out of the box, topped by the Emotion UI 4.1.
One of the most interesting features comes courtesy of the fingerprint sensor that doubles up as a multi-purpose button in lieu of a physical home button. Dubbed "Smart Key", as well as acting as a security method - which Honor claims improves in terms of accuracy the more it is used by its owner - the fingerprint sensor also can be held or double-tapped to open specific apps at speed. Perfect for those looking to quickly boot up Pokemon Go on a whim.
IBTimes UK attended the Paris launch event for the Honor 8 and will be spending some time getting to know the handset before sharing our hands-on early impressions ahead of a full review at a later date.
Honor president George Zhao took to the stage at the event to unveil the handset, stating that it is a smartphone "born for the young and young at heart".
Commenting on the launch and the youth-baiting appeal of the Honor 8, uSwitch.com's Ernest Doku said that the "Honor 8 joins the club that already counts the iPhone SE and Samsung Galaxy A as members - all are handsets targeted towards techy Generation Y who crave tons of features but refuse to pay flagship smartphone prices."
Doku also noted that the low-budget, high-spec approach is "likely to be a honeytrap for millennials living vicariously through Instagram and Snapchat; especially when wrapped up in a sleek glass handset that actually looks good."
The Honor 8 comes in three colours in the European market - Midnight Black, Sapphire Blue and Pearl White. It will be available to buy from Honor's vMall from 24 August, with Amazon, Clove and other online retailers also stocking the device.