Huawei P8 lite Review: Unlocked And Affordable

Introducing The Huawei P8 lite

Unlocked smartphones are attractive to customers who are looking for ways to avoid a long-term contract with a carrier, replace a broken phone, or travel overseas. If you’ve shopped for an unlocked phone, you’ll likely have come across a company called Huawei. Huawei ships phones worldwide, though they aren't very well known here in the United States.

Huawei has been taking a different approach than most mobile phone manufacturers in the United States by focusing on affordable, unlocked smartphones and selling these phones directly to customers, rather than working through the wireless carriers. By focusing on customers rather than the networks, Huawei hopes to become a progressive challenger in the mobile marketplace. This goal is evident in the company’s mission: “We aspire to become a leading unlocked wireless solutions alternative in the U.S. that inspires people to live smarter.”

Huawei P8 lite web

Today, we have the opportunity to take a closer look at one of Huawei’s unlocked US smartphones, the P8 lite. This smartphone was built with a focus on design, ease of use, and value for the money. Because the phone is unlocked, you’re free to take it to any GSM service provider and switch carriers when you choose.

Without a subsidy from a wireless carrier, unlocked phones are often very expensive, especially for the high-end flagship models. The P8 lite, however, aims to strike a balance between price and function. This balance is evident in the specifications of the Huawei P8 lite:

Huawei P8 lite
Specifications & Features
Qualcomm MSM8939 - Snapdragon 615
Quad-core 1.5 GHz Cortex-A53 & quad-core 1.0 GHz Cortex-A53 Processor
5.0-inch 1280x720 enhanced HD
MicroSD card up to 32GB
Android 4.4.4 KitKat
Rear: 13MP Sony BSI Auto-Focus, aperture F2.2, focal lens 28mm, macro mode, panoramic, LED flash
Front: 5M FF CMOS, F2.4 Aperture, 1.4µm sensor
Video Capture: 1080p video out
DTS audio effect
30 fps @ 1080p (MPEG-4/H.263/H.264) encode
Features: Audio photo and Remote Shooting
UMTS Bands 1,2,4,5
GSM 850/900/1800/1900
LTE Band 2,4,5,12 & 17
High Speed Data Connectivity HSPA CAT 24, HSPA CAT 6, 4G LTE CAT 4
Wi-Fi 802.11 b, g, n
Wi-Fi Display
Wi-Fi Direct

Bluetooth 4.0 BLE/EDR

Ports and Expansion
MicoUSB port
MicroSD card slot
Dual SIM card slot
3.5mm headset jack
2200 mAh non-removable
Size and Weight
5.63 x 2.78 x 0.30 inches (HxWxD)
4.76 ounces

SIM Type

Micro SIM and Nano SIM
Black & White - From $249 (Unlocked)

Glancing at the specs, you’ll see the P8 lite features an edge-to-edge 5-inch HD display, thin 7.7mm uni-body design, 4G LTE connectivity with support for all LTE bands, a 13 megapixel rear-facing camera with a 28mm lens, and a two-year warranty. The phone also has a dual SIM card design which enables you to use one device for two accounts. The P8 lite is available direct from Huawei for $249.99, which is quite affordable for an unlocked smartphone. Other retailers such as Amazon also sell the P8 lite.

P8lite back

Although there are a lot of things to like about the specifications of the P8 lite, it’s important to keep in mind that this phone isn’t designed to compete with flagship phones like the Samsung Galaxy Note5 or Galaxy S6 Edge+. These phones are in different classes and target different sets of consumers.

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