In India, Huawei didn’t launch any new phone for a while, but now after the US trade ban saga, Huawei Y9 Prime (2019) is its first smartphone in the country. Huawei’s 2019 journey has been quite interesting so far. From pioneering a foldable smartphone Huawei Mate X to the US trade ban, the Chinese telecom major has seen quite a bit in the last seven months. Despite the difficult times, Huawei recorded 118 million units sale globally during first half of 2019. The company managed to sell 10 million units of the Huawei Mate 20 series within five months, and 10 million units of the latest P30 series in just three months.
Coming to the Huawei Y9 Prime (2019), the company today launched its pop-up selfie camera smartphone today at an event in New Delhi. The same was unveiled globally a few months back. The handset offers full-screen display, 4000mAh battery, and more at a price tag of Rs 15,990 in India. It comes in one variant with 4GB RAM and 128GB internal storage. Huawei will sell it through Amazon India and major retail channels like Croma, Poorvika and more. I got a chance to use the device at company’s New Delhi launch event, and here are my first impressions.
Pop-up camera, full-screen design
The highlight of Huawei Y9 Prime (2019) is its full-screen display and pop-up selfie camera. The phone comes in two color options of Emerald Green and Sapphire Blue. The two-tone shade at the back gives the Y9 Prime a nice distinct look from the competition Realme X and Oppo K3. The phones feels much premium and grips well in hands. Having said that, the back glass finish does attract a lot smudges, so you’ll be better off with a back cover.
The display upfront is notch-less, and you get a 91 percent screen-to-body ratio. Huawei is offering an LCD panel of 6.59-inch size with full-HD+ resolution and 391ppi pixel density. I found the touch response to be smooth in my limited time, but just to compare it with the Oppo K3 and Realme X, those both offer AMOLED panels.
Camera and Battery
Huawei Y9 Prime (2019) is the company’s first smartphone in India to offer pop-up selfie camera. The company has put in a 16-megapixel motorized pop-up AI selfie camera, which is similar to Oppo K3. At the back, there is triple-camera setup, which is vertically stacked in the top left corner with an LED flash. This setup includes a 16-megapixel primary camera with f/1.8 sensor paired with an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens, and a 2-megapixel depth sensing camera. During my limited, I couldn’t test out the camera, so you’ll have to wait for the full review.
In the battery department, Huawei has offered a more generous 4,000mAh battery in Y9 Prime (2019). The smartphone is claimed to offer up to 22 hours of video playback, 44 hours of voice calling and nine hours of gaming time. While there is USB Type-C charging support on offer, what you don’t get is the fast charging.
Processor, RAM and more
The 2019 iteration of Y9 Prime comes powered by Huawei’s own Kirin 710 processor. The handset was launched in two variants globally, but in India, there will only be one variant with 4GB RAM and 128GB storage. Unlike Realme X and Oppo K3, the Y9 Prime (2019) does offer microSD card expandability up to 512GB. You get a dual hybrid slot for two Nano-SIM cards, or one SIM card with microSD expansion.
The other difference in the Y9 Prime is that it gets a physical fingerprint sensor instead of in-display fingerprint sensor. In my opinion, the physical fingerprint sensor is much better and faster than the current generation in-display fingerprint sensors that we get on the Realme X and Oppo K3. Huawei has kept the 3.5mm audio port, which you’ll find next to the USB Type-C charging port on the bottom edge. In my limited time, the phone’s performance felt alright. I didn’t see any lag or stutter of any kind. But we will find out more about it during our full review.
Huawei Y9 Prime (2019): Initial Impressions
The Huawei Y9 Prime (2019) at Rs 15,990 will primarily compete against the Oppo K3 and the Realme X in online space. Huawei has made a smart move by offering the handset in offline retail as well. There will be no price difference in the offline market, and on top of it, Huawei is bundling Rs 4,598 worth Huawei Sport Bluetooth headset and 15,000mAh power bank to all pre-ordering customers in offline.
From my limited hands-on time experience, I can confidently say that the Y9 Prime (2019) feels premium and is on par with the competition Realme X and Oppo K3. All these phones offer full-screen display and pop-up selfie camera as their major highlight. Having said that, we are yet to test out the performance of Y9 Prime (2019), hence there will be no judgement from our end until our final review.
|Features||Realme X||Oppo K3||Huawei Y9 Prime (2019)|
|Chipset||Qualcomm Snapdragon 710||Snapdragon 710 SoC||HiSilicon Kirin 710|
|OS||ColorOS 6 with Android 9 Pie||Android 9 Pie||Android 9.0 Pie|
|Display||6.53-inch -FHD+, 19.5:9 aspect ratio||AMOLED- 6.5-inch full HD+||6.59-inch full-HD+|
|Internal Memory||4GB RAM + 128GB storage||6GB RAM + 64GB storage||4GB RAM + 128GB storage|
|Rear Camera||Dual – 48MP + 5MP||Dual – 16MP + 2MP||Triple – 16MP + 8MP + 2MP|
|Front Camera||16MP||16MP||Pop-up 16MP|