Recently I got the Huawei P9, running Android 6.0 Marshmallow with the EMUI 4.1 skin. I will be doing a full review of the phone in a few weeks but for now I thought that I would give my first impressions of the phone after limited usage.
The P9 has an all metal body with a dual lens rear camera and a rear fingerprint sensor, it feels very solid and is surprisingly light in the hand. I think that the phone looks really nice. The finger print sensor is quick and so far very accurate, so far it has read my finger print even when I’ve just been using the corner. The Huawei P9 has a 5.2 inch full HD screen, overall I’d say it’s a good screen. I’ve found it to be clear sharp and has good colour accuracy, it’s definitely a highlight of the phone so far. The speakers are a little bit disappointing, it has one downward facing speaker, which can get pretty loud for a phone but it isn’t the best quality, it isn’t bad but my Nexus 6P which I just switched from was much better due to the fact it had front facing stereo speakers. The buttons are well placed and are clicky, they can be easily distinguished by the textured feel on the power button and the smooth finish on the volume rocker. It is a good sized phone and can be used comfortably in one hand.
I have seen a lot of negative reports about EMUI and to be honest I don’t really like it myself either. After about half an hour of using the phone I installed the Google Now launcher and set that as my default, as I find it to be a much better user experience than the default Huawei launcher. However apparently when Android 7 Nougat comes to Huawei phones, there will also be a new version of EMUI, which Huawei say is much better and puts all key functions only two or three clicks away. When you view all open apps, they are arranged side by side rather than on top of each other, I’m not a huge fan of this as it makes it harder to see everything that is open and it can be easy to skip over apps without noticing if you are not careful. When you enter the settings menu, it apears like Huawei have tried to make it feel like you are using an iPhone rather than an Android. The lock screen picture changes every time you turn the screen off which is a nice touch, however you can’t pull down your notifications from the top of the screen if the phone is locked. This is available on all other version of Android which I have tried so it baffles me Huawei not having this feature.
Read: Huawei P9 Review
I am excited to test out the camera on the Huawei P9 as it is the main feature that was boasted about in all the marketing for the P9. I have seen a few reviews but I want to make my own judgement, I have used it very briefly and was impressed by the shutter speed and the fast auto focus. I’m looking forward to trying the camera with good conditions to see if the pictures will be as good as I hope.
I’ve played a few quick games on the P9 and so far, it has performed well even when having many other apps open in the background. However, I am yet to try playing a game for a prolonged amount of time, so I will reserve judgement on this.
Hardware wise I so far like the P9 but the software experience is something that I will have to get used to. These are just my first impressions and I am looking forward to using this phone more. I am hoping that the Huawei software will grow on me, I will post a full review of the Huawei P9 in a few weeks.