Huawei P30 Lite Review
Huawei recently launched three new smartphones dubbed Huawei P30 Lite, P30 and P30 Pro expanding its portfolio. As the name suggests, the P30 Lite is a lower-cost version of the flagship P30. Since it’s the lite version, the specs are toned down a bit in order to keep the price in the budget range.
Comparing the device with P30 smartphone, the lite variant comes with less capable cameras, less powerful CPU and no 2x zoom capabilities. Even though the device comes with “Lite” moniker, the on-paper specifications tell a whole different story. Some of the key specifications of the device are premium build, triple cameras at the back and 128GB of internal memory.
After using the device for about a week now, here is what I think of it. Read on to find more about Huawei P30 Lite in our comprehensive review.
Price in India, Variants, and Availability
Huawei P30 Lite also comes in a two storage variant – one featuring a 4GB of RAM and 128GB of internal memory while the other boasting 6GB of RAM and the same amount of storage. The smartphone comes in two color options namely Midnight Black and Peacock Blue.
The base model of P30 Lite is up for grabs for INR 19,990 while the top-end variant is going to set you back INR 22,990. The smartphone is available for purchase exclusively via Amazon India. At this price, the smartphone directly competes with the likes of Redmi Note 7 Pro and Galaxy M40.
The packaging of the Huawei P30 Lite is very much similar to that of the flagship P30 Pro. The smartphone is packed inside a white color premium box which has the device name written on the front with the company’s branding. Opening the box, you will be greeted by the device itself which looks excellent in Peacock Blue color option.
Underneath the device, you’ll see a rectangular section consisting of a SIM ejector tool and some warranty manuals. Apart from these, you also get a fast charging adapter and a USB Type-C cable. Huawei is kind enough to include a pair of earphones which is something no other brand do in this price range. Although the earphones are of pretty low quality, the gesture here is appreciated.
Specs at a Glance
Before we jump right into the review, let’s check what the device is bringing to the table in this specs overview.
– Display: 6.15-inch IPS LCD, 1080×2312 pixels
– Processor & GPU: Kirin 710, Mali-G51 M4
– RAM & ROM: 4GB and 128GB
– Rear Camera: 24MP+8MP+2MP
– Selfie Camera: 32MP
– Battery: 3340mAh, USB Type-C
– Software: Android Pie, EMUI 9.0
– Price: INR 19,990
Design and Build Quality
Huawei P30 Lite follows the design ideology of its elder sibling P30 Pro. Even though the smartphone is priced one-third of the Pro variant, the P30 Lite still manages to impress us with its stunning design. The smartphone is a combination of plastic and glass, unlike the popular metal-glass duo. The device still manages to give that rich flagship kind of experience.
In Peacock Blue color, the P30 Lite takes the design to the next level thanks to its gradient glass back. You can see the wave patterns on the back whenever the light falls on the back of the device which looks very appealing. There is a slight curve on the back which adds up to the premium and elegant in-hand feel.
On the front, there is a small IPS LCD display which is perfect for those who loves devices with a comfortable size. Huawei went with the dewdrop notch to house the selfie camera. Thanks to the small notch and tiny bezels on the side, the smartphone has large real estate for the screen.
At the back, there is a vertically aligned triple camera module along with a fingerprint reader on the middle. Like P30 Pro, the Huawei branding is done in a vertical alignment. At the base, there is a USB Type-C port, a 3.5-mm headphone jack, and a speaker grille. You can find the SIM card tray on the top of the phone along with a microphone.
Huawei P30 Lite, surely, speaks of that premium look which no other brand is offering at this price to date. The device weighs just 159g and is 7.4-mm thick. Overall, the device is comfortable, light and thin giving you a visually stunning look and premiumness even though the frame is of plastic.
Huawei P30 Lite comes with a 6.15-inch IPS LCD Full HD+ screen with dewdrop notch and tiny bezels resulting in 19.5:9 aspect ratio. Thanks to this aspect ratio, the device feels taller even though it is of comfortable size. With the pixel density of 415 ppi, the screen delivers crisp and sharp colors.
Having a resolution of 1080×2312 pixels, the screen is perfect with good viewing angles and strong brightness levels. To keep the price on the budget side, Huawei decided to go with the IPS LCD screen instead of the AMOLED panels.
It is worth noting that Samsung is offering AMOLED panels on its device at the same price tag. No doubt, the OLED panels are the best-in-class, the IPS LCD on P30 Lite is also not that bad and it can still get the job done.
Personally, I wish that the brand should have gone for AMOLED panels but I am ready to compromise with the IPS LCD one if the device performs well in rest of the aspects.
Under the hood, Huawei P30 Lite is powered by the company’s own HiSilicon Kirin 710 chipset coupled with up to 6GB RAM and up to 128GB storage capacity. The Kirin 710 is a processor which is fabricated over a 12nm manufacturing process. It consists of eight cores namely 4x Cortex A73 clocked at 2.2GHz and 4x Cortex A53 clocked at 1.7GHz.
The Kirin 710 SoC is a capable processor which can handle moderate tasks with perfection. Still, the processor is underpowered for this price. You can do multitasking easily, switch to apps without any stuttering or lag.
Basically, you can do all the daily tasks on this phone without facing any slow down. The place in which the device face problem is the graphics-intensive tasks. I tried playing Pubg on this device but ended up noticing frame drops every now and then.
The amount of RAM on this phone is more than enough. The apps stay in the memory for a longer period of time giving a smooth multitasking experience. The internal storage should be more than enough to handle all your music, videos, images and whatnot. If not, you can always use the microSD card in a replacement of the second SIM slot.
Huawei P30 Lite runs on the latest version of Android i.e. Android 9.0 Pie based on the company’s own custom EMUI 9.0 skin. Unlike P30 Pro, the Lite variant does not support EMUI Desktop feature through which you can get neat desktop experience when your device is hooked up to monitor, something like Samsung Dex.
EMUI is like any other custom Android skin built on the foundation of home-screen and pull-down notification bar. Huawei’s custom skin feels a little heavy and that could be due to the fact that it comes with lots of bloatware apps.
Comparing the current EMUI version to a previous couple of versions, I can say that the software has seen a little bit of improvement. EMUI is no doubt highly customizable but it still lacks that clean, minimal and elegant feel.
For a budget smartphone, EMUI seems pretty well with plenty of customizations. Overall, the UI is not that bad for this price and I rarely encountered any bug or major issue with it.
On paper, the Huawei P30 Lite seems very promising with its triple rear camera set-up at the back. The module consists of a primary 24MP sensor (f/1.8 aperture), an ultra-wide 8MP lens (f/2.4 aperture) and a 2MP depth sensing camera (f/2.4 aperture) along with an LED flash. On the front, there is a massive 32MP selfie snapper with an aperture of f/2.0.
Coming to the rear-camera performance, the primary sensor is able to click some decent and acceptable shots in broad daylight conditions. Although the images still lack some details and sharpness which you will notice when you’ll zoom in. Most of the times, the colors are inconsistent which is something that should not happen in a device at this price range.
The cameras come with AI scene detection which seems to work pretty well. In various scenarios, I had to manually tweak some settings in order to click a better shot. Considering the fact that not everyone is comfortable with manual options, the rear-cameras are pretty well but it could have been better.
When you switch to the wide-angle lens, you can notice some noticeable drops in picture details but still, the addition of it is pretty nice. The 2MP depth-sensing camera is present in the module just to fake bokeh effects a little better than the software alone. The close-up shots were relatively decent in my opinion.
Portrait mode, on the other hand, is again on the average side. Most of the time, the software is not able to detect the edges that better which results in an image with average details.
Low-light camera performance is something in which almost every other budget phone has struggled and the P30 Lite is no exception. Huawei has introduced a Night Mode which in my opinion doesn’t help the photos in any way. In fact, you end up getting a picture with an increased level of noise and lack of crisp and details.
Moving to the selfie department, the P30 Lite manages to perform a little well in this with selfies having good sharpness, decent details, and proper color tones. Sometimes the selfies look artificial which can be due to the improper software optimizations. The selfie shots are still with plenty of details making it perfect for sharing over social media.
Huawei P30 Lite runs on a smaller 3,340mAh battery capacity which should be decent enough if not exceptional. On moderate usage, the device should be able to get through the day. There are plenty of tools hidden inside the software which can help you improve battery life. Some of them include limit background process, putting unused apps to sleep and battery-eating apps alert.
Fortunately, the device comes with fast charging support and works with the bundled charger adapter. The device takes about 1 hour and 15 minutes to completely charge from zero to 100% which is not that bad. Of course, there is no wireless charging at this price point.
Audio, Biometrics and Connectivity
For audio, Huawei P30 Lite comes with a speaker at the bottom which is loud enough to give you immersive audio experience. Huawei or Honor devices have always been pretty decent in terms of audio experience. You also get a 3.5-mm headphone jack and a pair of low-quality earphones. The audio output from the jack is nothing to write home about but it still does the job nicely.
Coming to biometrics, there is a physical fingerprint sensor at the back which is fairly speedy, accurate and reliable. There is a Face Unlock to which uses the 2D representation of your face via the front selfie snapper meaning it’s not that secure.
For connectivity, the device comes with all the standard piece of techs like 4G, WiFi, and Bluetooth v4.2. The competitors are offering the latest Bluetooth 5.0 which offers better connectivity. There is a USB Type-C at the bottom as mentioned earlier with the support of fast charging.
I like the fact that the brand has integrated an NFC on this device for mobile payment and one-touch pairing support.
Pros and Cons
– Premium design with gradient color option
– Enough amount of storage
– Perfectly fine display
– Cameras could have been better
– Under-powered performance
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