Although Honor phones are in a strange limbo, currently releasing only in certain countries and without Google apps, there are still definite reasons to consider and even purchase new and old Honor handsets.
First, the Huawei Mobile Services suite is set to expand soon and bring all the popular Android and iOS apps to Huawei (Honor’s parent company) phones. This includes Honor’s main line of devices as well as the View and X series.
Second, the phones are all pretty fashionable, with distinctive designs and features you don’t see in all phones (like side-mounted fingerprint sensor buttons on some devices). They’re also often packed with better camera capabilities than you often find at their mid- or low-end price ranges.
So to help you get your head around the various Honor lines and generations, we’ve come up with this list of the best Honor phones for you right now. As of writing, every phone on this list does come with the Google Mobile Services (GMS – which means you get Google apps including Gmail, YouTube and Maps) although new additions certainly won’t.
Best Honor phones 2020 at a glance
- Honor View 20
- Honor 20 Pro
- Honor 9
- Honor 9X
- Honor 20
- Honor 10
- Honor View 10
- Honor 20 Lite
- Honor 10 Lite
- Honor Play
Best Honor phones 2020
1. Honor View 20
The best Honor phone you can buy right now
Release date: December 2018 | Weight: 180g | Dimensions: 156.9 x 75.4 x 8.1mm | OS: Android 9 | Screen size: 6.4-inch | CPU: Kirin 980 | RAM: 6 / 8GB | Storage: 128 / 256GB | Battery: 4,000mAh | Rear camera: 48MP + ToF | Front camera: 25MP
Great battery life
Intriguing, smart camera
No wide or zoom rear lenses
That finish is an audience-divider
The Honor phone that tops our list right now is the Honor View 20, technically released first in China in late 2018 and then globally in early 2019.
This was one of the first smartphones with a punch-hole front camera cut-out, and also one of the first handsets with a 48MP rear camera, so its certainly a piece of history. But it’s also a decent phone in its own right too.
Sure, some may call the phone’s back ugly, but others might not mind – and even like it. At the end of the day, it’s not like you’re going to be looking at it that much anyway.
Read our full Honor View 20 review
2. Honor 20 Pro
The only Pro device on this list
Release date: July 2019 | Weight: 182g | Dimensions: 154.6 x 74 x 8.4mm | OS: Android 9 | Screen size: 6.26-inch | CPU: Kirin 980 | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 128 / 256GB | Battery: 4,000mAh | Rear camera: 48MP + 8MP + 16MP + 2MP | Front camera: 32MP
Fantastic four-camera array
Easy-to-use fingerprint sensor
No headphone jack
Magic UI looks rather childish
Arguably Honor’s most ‘premium’ phone on this list is the Honor 20 Pro, which is certainly at least the top-end version of the 20 line (which, confusingly, the Honor View 20 isn’t part of).
The phone has four high-quality cameras on the rear including one of the first macro lenses on a smartphone, and its front-facing snapper is great, too. it’s also a good-looking phone with decent specs and features.
Sure, it might be a little harder to get a hold of than its non-Pro version (featured lower on this list), but it’s definitely worth looking into if you want a great Honor phone.
Read our full Honor 20 Pro review
3. Honor 9
Release date: July 2017 | Weight: 155g | Dimensions: 147.3 x 70.9 x 8.4mm | OS: Android 7 | Screen size: 5.15-inch | CPU: Kirin 960 | RAM: 4 / 6GB | Storage: 64 / 128GB | Battery: 3,200mAh | Rear camera: 12MP + 20MP | Front camera: 8MP
One speaker driver
The Honor 9 isn’t exactly a new phone, but it’s still an impressive all-rounder, and it’s now decidedly affordable thanks to being a little older. The phone has two decent cameras, and is more compact than other devices on this list, so if you want a smaller phone this might be the one for you.
Sure, it’s not the most premium phone in a lot of ways, as it’s got a lot more bezel than you’ll find on most other Honor and other modern phones. That doesn’t matter to everyone, though, so if you don’t want to break the bank but want an Honor phone, this is a decent contender.
Read our full Honor 9 review
4. Honor 9X
Release date: October 2019 | Weight: 198.6g | Dimensions: 163.5 x 77.3 x 8.8mm | OS: Android 9 | Screen size: 6.59-inch | CPU: Kirin 710F | RAM: 4 / 6GB | Storage: 64 / 128GB | Battery: 4,000mAh | Rear camera: 48MP + 8MP + 2MP | Front camera: 16MP
Has a pop-up camera
Long battery life
Rather big body
Cameras are okay, not great
The Honor 9X is part of the company’s X-series of affordable handsets (and is not, in fact, related to the Honor 9 from several years prior).
The phone has a pop-up camera and a large, all-screen display, with a camera array topped by a 48MP snapper and also a fairly large battery. In general, there’s a few decent features, but it’s really the price that should appeal to prospective buyers, as this is a fairly cheap handset.
Read our full Honor 9X review
5. Honor 20
The basic sibling to the Pro
Release date: June 2019 | Weight: 174g | Dimensions: 154.3 x 74 x 7.9mm | OS: Android 9 | Screen size: 6.26-inch | CPU: Kirin 980 | RAM: 6 / 8GB | Storage: 128GB | Battery: 3,750mAh | Rear camera: 48MP + 16MP + 2MP + 2MP | Front camera: 32MP
Decent camera results
Magic UI is ugly
Level of app bloat is ridiculous
If you don’t need the extra storage or better cameras of the Honor 20 Pro, you might find the Honor 20 is a good enough phone for you.
The device has the same design build and many of the same features as its Pro sibling, and you’re not getting a significantly worse phone despite the lower pricetag.
Saying that, our main pain points from the bigger device are still present in the Honor 20, so if that phone doesn’t look right for you, this one might not either.
Read our full Honor 20 review
6. Honor 10
Release date: May 2018 | Weight: 153g | Dimensions: 149.6 x 71.2 x 7.7mm | OS: Android 8.1 | Screen size: 5.84-inch | CPU: Kirin 970 | RAM: 4 – 8GB | Storage: 64 / 128GB | Battery: 3,400mAh | Rear camera: 16MP + 24MP | Front camera: 24MP
Bold reflective back
Great integrated fingerprint scanner
No microSD support
Average battery life
The 2018 Honor flagship was the Honor 10, which was a decent smartphone (although its ranking below the Honor 9 from the year before should tell you something).
In many ways it’s an average Android smartphone, but we liked its fingerprint scanner and found the cameras pretty decent, too. It’s also more stylish than most other handsets, even from its heyday.
Read our full Honor 10 review
7. Honor View 10
Before the V design struck
Release date: January 2018 | Weight: 172g | Dimensions: 157 x 75 x 7mm | OS: Android 8 | Screen size: 5.84-inch | CPU: Kirin 970 | RAM: 4 – 8GB | Storage: 64 / 128GB | Battery: 3,400mAh | Rear camera: 16MP + 24MP | Front camera: 24MP
Long battery life
Loose camera exposure metering
No water resistance
We were big fans of the Honor View 10 when it was released, and though it’s slightly older now, that doesn’t mean it’s any worse a device – just that its successors are better.
There are some strengths, and some weaknesses to the phone, but overall it’s decent for people looking for an all-rounder phone that’ll see them through normal use. It’s worth pointing out, though, that the price of the Honor View 10 hasn’t sunk as low as its contemporaries since release.
Read our full Honor View 10 review
8. Honor 20 Lite
Release date: April 2018 | Weight: 164g | Dimensions: 154.8 x 73.6 x 8mm | OS: Android 9 | Screen size: 6.21-inch | CPU: Kirin 710 | RAM: 6GB | Storage: 128GB | Battery: 3,400mAh | Rear camera: 24MP + 8MP + 2MP | Front camera: 32MP
Strong screen for price
Camera capable of quality pictures
Wide-angle camera isn’t great
EMUI continues to underwhelm
Honor’s Lite phones haven’t always been the most impressive devices, but they’re good enough for people on a budget who don’t need all the smarts and specs of the mid-range devices.
The Honor 20 Lite was seemingly just an iterative upgrade on its predecessor, the Honor 10 Lite, but there are a few improvements – enough so to make the phone worth considering over the 10 Lite at the very least.
Read our full Honor 20 Lite review