OPINION: Honor Magic V strongly resembles the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3, but can it compete with this premium foldable device? Here’s what we think after some hands-on time.
Now that smartphones are increasingly resembling each other in terms of design, and the best phones are separated from each other only by the smallest borders, the introduction of a foldable form factor was a breath of fresh air.
Yes, there were some troubling teething issues from the start, and the earliest examples of the technology closely resembled prototypes, but it increasingly seems that the format’s widespread adoption may not be far off.
However, despite some success with the Motorola Razr and Huawei P50 Pocket, the focus in this area has been on Samsung’s interpretation of foldability, the latest generation of which included the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Galaxy Z Flip 3.
But a new contender is about to appear; Honor Magic B.
A former sub-brand of Huawei, Honor has since split from its parent company and returned to the block, complete with Google mobile services, and is determined to reach the heights of its former glory. Impressed with the Honor 50, I was delighted to be able to try out an engineering prototype of the upcoming Honor Magic V.
The form factor is very reminiscent of the Galaxy Z Fold 3, which at first glance appears to be a long but thick smartphone until you open it all the way to reveal a tablet-sized screen inside.
The back panel has a nice glossy design that allows light to pass through the ribbed textured surface well. There’s also a fairly large camera module here, and my earliest impressions of its performance are good too, although it’s too early to pass a verdict.
Once flipped to the front, the external screen is immediately impressive. With minimal bezels and only a punch-hole selfie camera at the top, it looks like a standard smartphone screen with the 21:9 aspect ratio that’s common on unfolding devices like the Sony Xperia 1 III.
This means that he did not feel compromised by his role in the design; you don’t feel compelled to open the tablet every time you want to do something useful with it, and you could spend all day just using that screen if you wanted to. Such excellent use of space can really set it apart from the rest of the competition.
While the device is certainly thicker than a standard smartphone, when folded this way, it doesn’t feel prohibitively bulky by any means. If you have deep pockets (literal, but probably metaphorical as well, although pricing hasn’t been announced yet), you’ll probably pop this in with no problem. It felt solid, immune to misuse, and the magnets covering the screens felt very strong. Moreover, when closed, there was no noticeable gap between the screens where dirt or dust could get in.
Finally, the main event: after full disclosure, a screen the size of a tablet appears. They say it’s what’s inside that counts, and in that measure, the design succeeded once again.
The big screen is interrupted by only one very small cutout for the selfie camera in the top right corner, but otherwise it offers the kind of big screen experience you can’t get on a standard smartphone, and it will be enjoyable for content viewing and useful for work. go. There is a slight bulge in the middle of the screen, but during use I found no sensitivity issues in this area of the screen, and it is barely noticeable when you are absorbed in working with the screen.
Overall, I was very encouraged by this experience with the Honor Magic V for two reasons; firstly because it’s a strong design execution in its own right, and secondly because it can really give Samsung a cash-in opportunity that we haven’t seen in this emerging foldable market yet.
It goes without saying that we’ll have to do a full review of it before coming to any firm conclusions about its performance, but based on my experience, I’m looking forward to trying it out.