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A small difference in price for small differences in devices.
Last year’s Honor 6X was one of the best devices in the budget category, offering long battery life, a sturdy metal build, and reasonably good dual cameras. Naturally, we were excited when the company refreshed its lineup with the Honor 7X, and it once again proved to be a powerful budget contender.
Rather than eliminating the 6X from its selection, Honor is still selling both devices through its online store, which begs the question … which one should you buy? We’re here to help you make that decision.
What the Honor 7X does better
A taller aspect ratio can go a long way.
A quick glance at the 7X is all it takes to notice some pretty significant updates to the Honor design. The new 18:9 display brings a modern feel to the phone, and the dual camera layout has been rearranged to sit along the antenna line.
Because the display of the Honor 7X is taller than that of the 6X in roughly the same-sized body, it also covers a larger footprint — 5.93 inches vs. 5.5 inches, respectively. This means more room for scrolling lists, web pages, and photos. It’s also a better looking panel; both are IPS LCD, but the Honor 7X gets noticeably brighter than the Honor 6X.
Internally, the SoC has been bumped from a Kirin 655 to a Kirin 659, but just about everything else is the same; both the Honor 7X and 6X have 3 to 4GB of RAM, and either 32GB or 64GB of microSD-expandable storage. Each phone also boasts a 3340mAh battery, along with a dual SIM tray.
The Honor 7X ships with EMUI 5.1 running over Android 7.1 Nougat. While not hugely different, it brings a number of small improvements over EMUI 5.0, including better resource management, an improved gallery, and faster app launching.
The cameras have also seen a slight upgrade. Last year’s 12MP/2MP camera combo around the back has been bumped up to a 16MP/2MP pairing, though the 8MP sensor up front has stayed the same.
Where the Honor 6X still holds its own
Despite the 7X‘s improvements, the Honor 6X is still a great budget device. Its Kirin 655 chipset is plenty fast enough for daily operation (though it chokes up a bit at times), and just like the 7X, the large 3,340mAh battery translates to impressive longevity.
The Honor 6X is one of the few phones in its class to feature a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor, with fast and accurate readouts. And while it may not have the 18:9 aspect ratio of the newer 7X, the Honor 6X still has relatively slim bezels above and below the display — we’ve certainly seen much worse on much more expensive phones.
There’s also something to be said about build quality. The Honor 6X features a mostly metal design, and feels more premium than most of the other phones in its price range. Its curved backing feels comfortable in the hand, and the hardware buttons are clicky and responsive.
Which should you buy?
If you’re already rocking the Honor 6X, there’s no real reason to upgrade. EMUI 5.1 certainly isn’t enough to make 5.0 feel outdated, and while the modernized design of the Honor 7X is nice, the 6X is still a solid performer with good battery life and premium materials.
If, however, you don’t own either device and you’re shopping for something new, the Honor 7X easily justifies its $20 premium over the 6X — the elongated aspect ratio means more room for apps, and the 16MP camera sensor has a slight edge in sharpness and low-light performance. It’s also likely to receive better long-term support — hopefully including an update to Oreo some time in the near future.
The updated software and design of the Honor 7X are easily worth the extra $20.