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Huawei Honor 8 vs P9 Plus vs Mate 9 : an ultimate in-house tussle

26 December 2016 4

Huawei’s all the three smartphones P9 Plus, Mate 9, and Honor 8 are among the best smartphones with dual rear camera setup. While Honor 8 comes from Huawei’s sub-brand Honor, the device has managed to grab the same attention as Huawei’s latest flagships. The brand Honor has been made to serve the youth. The smartphones from Honor come at affordable prices but they are yet powerful and ready to give a tough competition to other available flagships. Honor 8 is one such smartphone from the portfolio of Huawei’s sub-brand that is packed with great specifications and features. That’s why it is standing next to the flagships Huawei Mate 9 and P9 Plus to give them a fierce competition. It has already given a sample of its performance by getting compared against the Xiaomi Mi Note 2.

Talking about the Mate 9 and P9 Plus, you have already seen them getting compared with other flagships. Huawei P9 Plus and Nexus 6P stands neck to neck with each other offering just perfect specifications. It is also a tough war between Mate 9, iPhone 7 Plus, and Google Pixel XL.

All the smartphones are powered by bold and high-end configurations and own some specific qualities that may not be found in other phones or can be found in a different variant in other flagships. For instance, Huawei’s latest initiative is to make their EMUI smarter with the help of AI and that’s what Google Pixel XL is working on. It’s built in Assistance which builds a conversational environment with the help of Artificial Intelligence. For Huawei, EMUI is the next big thing and with the help of it, the company is going to make the most of the transitions. Let’s discuss all their features in detail with the help of this difference.

Difference between Honor 8, Huawei P9 Plus, and Mate 9

These best smartphones holding the tag for putting up best dual real cameras setup differ in a lot of different ways. It’s not just about the camera quality but much more beyond that. All the three contenders are powered by different chipsets. Honor 8 is one of the best competitors when it comes to the top smartphones under $400. Mate 9 and P9 Plus, on the other hand, hold the flagship tag and can quench your thirst for having a high-end smartphone in your hand. Let’s dig further and know how they differ in terms of other assets.

Design, build, and Display –

71 x 145.5 x 7.45 mm
5.2 inches - 1920x1080 px
75.3 x 152.3 x 6.98 mm
5.5 inches - 1920x1080 px
78.9 x 156.9 x 7.9 mm
5.9 inches - 1920x1080 px
Go to comparison page

Huawei Mate 9 holds an attractive brushed metal unibody design. Looking at the Mate 9, you will find that the device has the same design aspect as previous Mate devices. However, you’ll find a few improvements which are obvious. A nice chamfering can be seen at the margin of the device. Talking about the Huawei P9 Plus, the device also holds the full metal body with glass fronts. The fingerprint sensor on the rear can be seen on both the Huawei devices.

Honor 8 has somewhat identical design like the Huawei P9 Plus. And, yes, metal is the new black which can be seen adorned by even the affordable phones today and why should Honor 8 be left behind. However, the corners are more rounded and the device has thin bezels around the display which make it look premium. Huawei says that the rear of the Honor 8 is constructed from 15 layers of glass and named the tech as 3D grating and lithography.

Honor 8, P9 Plus, and Mate 9

Now comes to display, Honor 8 holds the 5.2-inh display with full HD resolution. Talking about the Huawei P9 Plus, the device features a 5.5-inch display with the same full HD profile whereas the Mate 9 is the largest among them, holding a 5.9-inch display with same 1080x1920 pixels resolution. Huawei Mate 9 could have come with the QHD profile, but Huawei chose to stick with the full HD.

Hardware –

Let’s come to the processor part and know how the three smartphones make themselves unique from each other. All the three smartphones are powered by Huawei’s in-house chipsets. It would be interesting to note down the performance difference between the three considering all have the processors manufactured by the same company.


Honor 8 is powered by 1.8GHz octa-core HiSilicon Kirin 950 processor and accompanied by the 3GB RAM or 4GB RAM with 32GB or 64GB internal memory depending on the variant you are going with. Huawei P9 Plus is powered by HiSilicon Kirin 955 processor coupled with 4GB RAM. Huawei claims that the processor is 100 percent faster than the P8 and offers 125 percent improvement on 3D graphics.

Out of these three smartphones, Mate 9 is the most advanced one as it comes powered by Kirin 960 processor and Mali G71 GPU. Here, Huawei claims this processor is 180 percent faster than the Kirin 950 and three times superior to Mate 8 in the graphics department. The G71 is the first ARM chipset that supports Vulkan rather than OpenGL.

Camera –

Honor 8, P9 Plus, and Mate 9

All the three smartphones feature dual camera setup at the back. The Honor 8 has the 12MP dual rear camera setup. One helps in imparting the colors to the images getting clicked and one works with monochrome. On the front, you will find an 8MP camera for taking stunning selfies. The pictures taken with Honor 8 are the proofs that you may not require a DSLR as these pictures are quite crisp and offer great details. Talking about the Huawei Mate 9, the dual camera setup is built from a 12MP standard RGB sensor and is accompanied by an interesting 20MP monochrome sensor. Mate 9, offering up a 2x “optical” zoom feature which is very similar to the 2x zoom offered in the iPhone 7 Plus.

Huawei P9 Plus also holds the same 12MP rear dual camera setup like the Honor 8. It comes with laser assisted AF on the rear, Leica technology, including standard, vivid, and smooth film modes.

Out of the three smartphones, only Huawei Mate 9 allows you to shoot 4K videos. Honor 8 and P9 Plus allows you to shoot them only in 1080p resolution.

Software –

Honor 8, P9 Plus, and Mate 9.

The Honor 8 comes pre-installed with the Android Marshmallow OS with EMUI 4.1 on the top of it. However, the company has made an official statement that Honor 8 will soon be upgraded to Android Nougat which is a great thing to note. So, if you have planned to go for Honor 8 then get ready to upgrade to the latest Android OS with the company’s newest EMUI 5.0 UI. However, Honor 8 does come with a few bloatware.

Huawei P9 Plus also come pre-installed with Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS with the company’s EMUI 4.1 skin over the top. Huawei Mate 9, newest among them comes with Android 7.0 and Huawei’s latest EMUI 5.0 skin out of the box. There are floating docks available and one-handed modes to make using the 5.9-inch phablet easier. The latest UI from Huawei is simple, cleaner, and also marks the addition of an app drawer.

With EMUI 5.0, Huawei has also taken an initiative to make by including the EMUI machine learning algorithm with the software. This aims at making sure that the Mate 9 doesn’t get slow down. It works according to analyzing the usage patterns and then prioritizes the apps’ usage and memory allocation accordingly for better, smoother, and faster performance. While launching the Mate 9, Huawei said that they have achieved this after doing 3 years of research on Android and their Kirin SoC.

Battery and Storage –

Honor 8 comes with 3,000mAH battery and available in three storage variants - 3GB variant with 32GB internal storage is priced at $299 while the phone with 4GB RAM with 32GB internal memory $343 also a 4GB RAM with 64GB storage entire network version listed for $374. With the help of microSD card, the storage of the Honor 8 can be expanded further (up to 128GB).

Huawei P9 Plus has a slightly larger battery capacity of a 3400mAh battery over the Honor 8. P9 Plus on the other hand only comes in one model, which offers 64GB of internal storage and 4GB of RAM. USB Type-C and microSD are both on board again.

Huawei Mate 9 offers the highest battery capacity of 4,000mAH with the company’s own Super Charge technology. Like the P9 Plus, it is also available only in one model (note: ignoring the special edition Porsche Design). Mate 9 offers a 64GB internal storage, 4GB RAM variant with microSD slot option to expand it further. Here, Mate 9 can be expanded up to 256GB, unlike the P9 Plus and Honor 8.

Conclusion -

Huawei Honor 8 has proved itself that how to make way in a hay. It has successfully marked its entry in the league of leading flagships. It is very elegantly giving a competition to its own company's manufactured devices Mate 9 and P9 Plus. Honor 8 can become your daily driver if you are planning to have some high-end device at a reasonable price. Between the P9 Plus and Mate 9, we believe if you really want to go for a flagship then it's better to move ahead with the latest addition which is Mate 9, though the size of the smartphone may hinder you to buy it, but once you have it you'll unlikely to disappoint yourself. Also, Mate 9 is the powerful device than the Honor 8 and P9 Plus, thanks to a great CPU and GPU combination. Talking about P9 Plus, it resides between Honor 8 and Mate 9 clearly, considering the chipset of Huawei.

  • The Huawei Mate 9 isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.
  • The Honor 8 isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.
  • The Huawei P9 Plus isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.

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Compare phones : Huawei Honor 8 vs P9 Plus vs Mate 9
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JustinBroad
JustinBroad

I would advise everyone using the Mate 9 to watch this video at least once. This is why the Mate 9 is my favorite device and the video is the proof. It indeed works fast than the phones in its class.

SteffiGraham
SteffiGraham

What's interesting to note here is that you have compared all the three phones from the same company running the same processors. But still going deep down, there's surely performance difference and that's the fun part.

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