Huawei P20 Lite Review

Since we’re on mobile phones, why not continue talking about them? That’s right, I didn’t get the P20 that Dirty Shoes got because she’s the baller; I’m just the ball-boy. Ball-boy gets P20 Lite.

Since arriving in Japan, I’ve used a number of smartphones from different manufacturers. Apart from the very first flip-phone I got for work purpose, the smartphones I’ve used to-date are a green Sharp Aquos 103SH, white Fujitsu Arrows NX F-06E, silver Sony Xperia XZ SO-01J, and my current blue Huawei P20 Lite.

As you can see, I’ve never used an iPhone because I find it very difficult to use. The lack of freedom to tweak and customize the phone is a pain point for me. There are also no widget settings nor menu to perform a variety of actions on various apps easily. Case in point: I have my calendar widget and a number of finance widgets laid out across the home screen on my Android currently, so I can browse through a number of things quickly without launching any app. That is the kind of convenience iPhone lacks, so I don’t see myself using an iPhone ever.

Among the Android phones I’ve used, Aquos has been the most disappointing. Its touchscreen response pales in comparison to other brands and that is the biggest peeve I have with it, so I’ve decided never to use an Aquos phone again. Arrows was a pretty decent phone and I liked it, until I tried Xperia, that is. Xperia is my favorite brand thus-far. Despite the novelty in having my P20 Lite on-hand, I’m afraid I have given my heart to Xperia. The phone’s sleek design, highly responsive touchscreen, great audio (even better coupled with my beastly Sony WH-1000XM2 headphones) are all a huge plus. The only reason I didn’t get an Xperia this time was because Y!Mobile doesn’t carry them =( But before I get too hung up on talking about the Xperia, let’s get back to topic: the P20 Lite.

Now, Dirty Shoes had a breeze transferring data from her older OnePlus 3 to her new P20 because of the built-in phone cloning function. The P20 Lite also has the phone clone function pre-installed (although I didn’t use it), so that means, you don’t have to worry about having to re-download your apps and transferring your pictures, data and files from your old phone because it almost literally clones your old phone. That is true of all Android phones now since you can just download the phone clone app.

For selfie and photography lovers, the P20 Lite is a great phone to have. It has the beauty function built into the default camera app and a number of stickers that you can play around with. Further, it also comes with a pro mode which you can meddle with to adjust your desired ISO settings and what not so you feel like a professional photographer. Sadly, regardless of it being a China phone, all phones sold in Japan are required to disable the mute function on its pre-installed cameras, so if a silent camera is more important to you than the functions Huawei’s built-in app has to offer, then you can download silent camera apps from the Google Play store.

The downside of the P20 Lite would be the audio. I haven’t actually tried listening to music on it although I wasn’t too disturbed when I watched YouTube. But when making phone calls, the sound over the phone is a little muffled and sometimes hard to hear. Unless you have Anthony Hopkins brandishing his announcer voice while talking to you over the phone, chance is, you’ll notice the muffled sound.

The other thing I don’t like about the P20 Lite is its screen. Under a bright sunny day, I only had to adjust my Xperia XZ to about 80% of its brightness to get a clear view of the screen. On the P20 Lite, maxing out the brightness level does little to subvert the glaring reflection. The screen does become clearer than if it were really dark, but it is a big minus to me.

The only plus I can think of regarding this phone that is actually useful for me is the hybrid sim function. This means, it has a nano sim card slot + a slot for either an SD card or another nano sim. So if you want to use an SD card, you can’t insert 2 sim cards. However, if you’re not using an external SD card, you can basically use the phone as though it is dual sim, although I don’t think it is capable of receiving calls on both SIM cards at any one time. Nevertheless, it being sim-free also means I can insert my Circles Life sim card from Singapore in the other slot instead of keeping it in my glasses’ case.

Conclusion: Buy an Xperia.

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