Huawei Y9a Unboxing and First Impressions

Huawei has sent over the Y9a for review. I have a video already while unboxing it – you can find it down below. It is one of those unboxings where I completely didn’t know what to expect, so I was pretty amazed by the colour of the device, the display, and the overall design. I also didn’t know what a couple of things were including the pop-up camera, and the refresh rate of the panel used.

The unit I have runs on pre-release software meant for testing purposes only. So we will have to wait for the official software so as to see the image quality, and even test out things like battery and performance. However, from my first interactions, I quite like it. Let me share with you a couple of things that have caught my eye in the first 20hrs with the device:

Design:

My favourite thing about this phone is how it looks. The design. The colour at the back. The front full screen look. The way the camera setup at the back has been designed. The choice with what Huawei calls Sakura Pink that gives the device a two-tone colour finish. The placement of the ports at the bottom, the fingerprint scanner placement. In short, it looks really good for a device I estimate will cost between KES. 24,000 and KES. 27,000. Price is set at KES. 30,300.

Display:

The display is good. I like the full screen look with no notch, no cutouts, nothing. I also believe this panel supports a high refresh rate. I know I am using unfinished software on the review unit that has been sent over. And that currently, there’s no option to change the refresh rate in settings. But from my interaction with the device (after the unboxing where I said it wasn’t a high refresh rate panel), I felt like I was wrong. I believe it is a high refresh rate panel. Maybe 90hz. To test this out I installed a couple of apps that help out with such tests, and unfortunately, none of them were of any help because they require Google Services. If I am wrong, then the device just happens to be very smooth.

Cameras:

The camera setup looks good. Like really good. The bump is small and doesn’t affect how the device lies on a flat surface. The design around the edges and the arrangement just stands out so well for me. I like this look. I couldn’t get to show the design of the rings around the camera in the pictures above, but in different lighting, they pop differently.

The pop-up camera feels almost the same as the one from the Huawei Y9s. It retracts when pressed or when the device falls. This time around, I feel like it pops out much faster than with previous Huawei phones.

Fast Charging:

This is the fastest fast charger I’ve ever interacted with. 40W is pretty fast. I don’t know how it will hold up in future in terms of the battery not wearing out, but from inserting the charger and marvelling at the speed going from 35% to 70% in literally no time, I am all in for fast charging. The battery is also big enough to last more than a day of use. And with Huawei’s aggressive battery saving techniques, one will definitely be getting over 8hrs screen-on time with this device.

Other stuff:

Huawei Y9a Unboxing and First Impressions
  1. Fingerprint Scanner – Really good, as should be. Really fast.
  2. Huawei Mobile Services – No Google services. But petal search is here finally pre-installed. And there are more apps on App Gallery.
  3. Nano Memory Slot – There’s expandable storage. But the slot if Huawei’s custom NM Slot that looks like the normal SIM Card – utilising the Second SIM Card Slot. Finding these Huawei NM Cards is still pretty hard here in Kenya.
  4. Dual Microphones – There’s a top and bottom microphone, meaning audio recording and phone calls will be quite good and quite clear.

Video Unboxing:

Specifications:

PRICEKES. 30,999
Display6.63 inches 1080 x 2400 pixels, 20:9 ratio,
IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen full screen
Rear CameraQuad:
64 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), PDAF
8 MP, f/2.4, 120˚ (ultrawide)
2 MP, f/2.4, (macro)
2 MP, f/2.4, (depth)
Front Camera16MP, pop-up
ChipsetMediatek Helio G80 (12 nm)
GPUMali-G52 MC2
RAM6/8GB RAM
Storage128GB Storage
UFS 2.1
Nano Memory Expandable, up to 256GB (uses shared SIM 2 slot)
Operating SystemAndroid 10, EMUI 10.1, no Google Play Services
BatteryLi-Po 4200 mAh or 4300 mAh, non-removable
22.5W or 40W Fast Charging
Network2G, 3G, 4G
Colour optionsSpace Silver, Sakura Pink, Midnight Black
OthersWi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot
Bluetooth 5.1, A2DP, LE
GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS
USB 2.0, Type-C 1.0 reversible connector, OTG

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