Choices are aplenty when it comes to smartphones targeted at selfie lovers. Choosing one can be a headache because most of them have about the same specifications and are priced similarly too.
With the Nova 2i, Huawei is hoping to standout from the crowd with a smartphone that features four cameras – two on the front and two on the back.
The more the merrier
The addition of a secondary 2-megapixel depth sensor to the 16-megapixel main sensor on the front is definitely a plus for taking selfies, as you can use the Bokeh effect.
This effect allows you to blur the background so the subject can standout, which makes it perfect for selfies.
The depth information captured with the secondary sensor resulted in a much more natural looking Bokeh with the Nova 2i.
There is also a Perfect Selfie mode which requires the user to shoot three different photos – front, profile and another photo with the head slightly tilted down.
The photos will be combined into a single shot and intelligently tweaked but you will still be able to fine tune it.
Perfect Selfie takes a little more work but the selfies were definitely much better looking.
On the back is a 13-megapixel main sensor which is accompanied by a similar 2-megapixel depth sensor for Bokeh effects.
Just like the front cameras, the effect was natural looking and the cameras produced decent shots.
Longer is better
Looks like more and more smartphone makers are embracing longer displays because you get to see more and still grip the phone comfortably.
The Nova 2i is one of the first affordable smartphones to feature a large 5.9in full HD+ (1,080 x 2,160 pixels) screen with a longer 18:9 aspect ratio than the standard 16:9.
The longer display is great when using apps that support the aspect ratio but there are not many yet.
When an unsupported app is used you will see a tiny black bar at the bottom – you have the option to stretch the app to fit the display but you will loose a little on the sides which is not too obvious.
But with Google calling on more developers to support the 18:9 ratio, hopefully this issue will go away soon.
With the prices of smartphones increasing all the time it’s surprising that Huawei has managed to keep the price of the Nova 2i at just RM1,299 while still packing the phone with enough features.
The phone is powered by a Kirin 659 octa-core processor, and has 4GB RAM, large 64GB internal storage and decent 3,340mAh battery.
The phone is powerful enough to handle popular Moba (mobile multiplayer online battle arena) games such as Mobile Legends and Age Of Valor which are quite resource heavy.
The battery was good enough to last us the whole day when we used it mainly for social media, light gaming sessions and some selfie shooting.
The Nova 2i is a good option if you are not hoping to spend too much but still want a phone with plenty of features.
And it’s especially ideal if you are into selfies as the two cameras and Perfect Selfie mode really make a difference.
Pros: Good selfie cameras; decent battery life; beautiful display; attractive design.
Cons: Most apps not optimised for longer display.
OPERATING SYSTEM: Android 7.0
DISPLAY: 5.9in full HD+ (1,080 x 2,160 pixels)
CAMERA: 13 megapixel + 2 megapixel rear; 16 megapixel + 2 megapixel front
CONNECTIVITY: Bluetooth 4.2, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
PROCESSOR: HiSilicon Kirin 659 octa-core processor (4 x 2.36GHz Cortex-A53 + 4 x 1.7GHz Cortex-A53)
MEMORY: 64GB memory (expandable up to 128GB),
DIMENSIONS (W x D x H): 75.2 x 7.5 x 156.2mm
RATING: Four stars
Review unit courtesy of Huawei Technologies Malaysia, 1800-22-3366