[REVIEW] HUAWEI Nova 7 SE – The ultimate mid-range phone?

In the world of smartphones that we are living in, camera quality, screen display size and refresh rate are the ones that are dominating the headlines. But when it comes down to rational value, these are just luxuries you want but not necessary for everyday life. HUAWEI is known in the smartphone marketplace as the brand with an incredible camera and the premium build quality on their devices. Little did we know that Huawei does offer phones in the mid-range. Today we are taking a look at Huawei’s Nova 7 SE, which retails as $528 SGD on Shopee.

At first glance, Huawei Nova 7 SE looks just like any other flagship phones, with a huge 2400px by 1080px display over a 6.5 inch screen and a small notch at the top left corner of the display that houses the selfie cam. The size is just nice for your hands, easily gripping it while still feeling comfortable. The body is made of plastic which doesn’t inspire confidence as you hold it in your hand, but a simple phone cover would be a suitable protection for phones around this price range.

Display


The phone display looks sharp despite only being at FHD+ and in all honesty, this resolution looks amazing on a 6.5inch screen. Sure, the high-end flagship phones have resolutions that are larger, but for such a small screen size, the increase in resolution is hardly recognisable and negligible. 

Camera

The HUAWEI Nova 7 SE comes with 4 rear cameras (64MP + 8MP + 2MP +2MP) and a front camera (16MP) which may sound impressive, but in reality, the camera quality isn’t great. Details are lost and quality of the image drops when you zoom in. But what make this phone’s camera impressive is the AI. The inbuilt camera AI makes up for the loss of quality when taken with the camera by enhancing the image during post, making every image more vibrant in colour and bringing the image to life. This makes every shot taken on this phone Insta-worthy.

EMUI

With the ban of Google services, Huawei’s phones aren’t as appealing as they were before, but we were pleasantly surprised by Huawei’s response to the ban. Despite the App Gallery (Huawei’s equivalent of App Store or Play Store) still being in its infancy, it has most of the basic and common apps available to download from, which would include Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp and TikTok. Apps that are not on the App gallery can be requested on the app so that they can get it up earlier or you will be directed by the app to a website to download from the source directly. During the 1 week when I was using it, I was not hindered by the lack of apps for most of the part, except for the lack of Grab app which was frustrating considering how much I use it to travel around and there’s no other way to get the app on my phone.

Additional features or lack thereoff

Additionally, HUAWEI Nova 7 SE comes with 5G enabled, which means the phone is ready when 5G is rolled out in Singapore. Whereas the biggest lack of feature is the absence of NFC on the device, meaning that payment through your phone at the physical store is not possible (but hey, who’s even going out to shop during a pandemic). It’s not a big deal but it’s worth mentioning for those who are considering purchase.

SUMMARY

At $528, HUAWEI Nova 7SE is a steal of a phone, with a beautiful display, smooth user experience and a decent camera AI. This is one of the best phones you can buy at this price. But for me to straight up recommend this phone is really a tough call when Google is releasing the Pixel 4A and when OnePlus’ latest “Flagship-killer Phone” OnePlus Nord is around the corner. It is always best to compare the phones and check out which feature you really need. This is a great time to be a Smartphone enthusiast. I will give HUAWEI Nova 7 SE a BRUTAL APPROVED.

Huawei Nova 7 SE
  • Build Quality
  • User Interface
  • Display
  • Camera
3.8

Quality budget phone

Huawei tried their absolute best to make their product the best possible option given the price range, but unfortunately, the lack of Google Services is still the biggest drawback. Interested buyers need to strongly take into consideration before making their purchase

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