Huawei Nova 9 SE, analysis: if you do not have Google services, it is essential to be better than the competition
The once king of sales in various segments, Huawei, has seen its impact on the market drop in a dazzling way. Not having Google services has earned it a reputation that completely hides the great value that its terminals have. In all ranges.
Take the new Huawei Nova 9 SE as an example, a mid-range terminal with a 108 MP camera that, if we leave Google services aside, is presented in society as a well-armed smartphone with a very appealing design. Attention Will it is enough to succeed?
Impossible not to notice him
In addition to its generous size in hand, the Huawei Nova 9 SE, we cannot say that it is a phone many people will not ask you about. Take a photo in the street, and you will have someone curious asking about the model.
And it is that the multicolour mirror back and the camera module with two huge lenses are not seen every day. Of course, you already know that that mirror effect and glossy finish on the back will be a friend to fingerprints without a doubt.
The Huawei Nova 9 SE has an excellent selling point in its striking design.
In addition, the forcefulness of such a large camera module is associated with a “complex” presence in the equipment, as it makes the terminal limp and sways when we have it on a flat surface. We want to interact with its screen, and the fact that its size means that, taking the terminal with the left hand, which in my case is usual, we quickly reach the lower lens with the index finger.
For the rest, and if the striking design convinces us despite these “buts”, the Huawei Nova 9 SE will be very comfortable for us on a day-to-day basis. It has a generous size but is manageable for most hands. The curvature of the back integrates well when holding it. The frames are soft to the touch, and the fingerprint reader, integrated into the home button, is at a perfect height for your Unlock without thinking.
Although its operating speed does not reach that of the high-end, fortunately, combined with face detection, we have a reliable and relatively fast identification overall.
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Despite all this, the Huawei Nova 9 SE demands the use of a cover basically because of how slippery the glass on its back is and how light it is in hand. They are 191 grams and have a width of 7.5 cm. It is available in three colours (white, black and blue), with white and blue being the most prominent and black being the most elegant.
In the purely physical aspect of the design, we must speak of the left side as utterly free of elements. For this reason, both the power button and the volume control (a single feature too short to manage both volumes up and down) are on the right side.
The Huawei Nova 9 SE has the fingerprint reader integrated into the power button (side) and “passes” the headphone port.
The USB-C port is located in the lower frame, with the primary and only speaker on its right. The other sound element for calls is at the top, visible along with the card tray, being a dual-SIM terminal. We do not have a headphone port, which does not quite fit in an airport of this mid-range.
A fair mid-range at the level of performance and technical sheet
The Snapdragon 680 processor is the most straightforward reference to place this Huawei Nova 9 SE within the mid-range. Qualcomm’s SoC, presented at the end of last year, is a model with eight cores (4 Cortex-A73 at 2.4 GHz and 4 Cortex-A53 at 1.9 GHz) and Adreno 610 GPU, but it does not offer 5G connectivity, one of the weak points of this terminal to compete for face to face with your rivals.
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It does much better at the amount of RAM or internal memory. The version that we have analyzed, which is available in the Spanish market, provides us with 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage, which cannot be expanded. Both are amounts that an average user should have enough to get a satisfactory experience.
Without 5G and with only correct power, the Huawei Nova 9 SE has difficulty standing up to the competition on the technical sheet.
At the performance level, this Huawei Nova 9 SE has not been lazy daily except when using the camera and in demanding games. That is where a mid-range terminal can make a difference with the competition. However, with this Huawei Nova 9 SE, I have not. We are left with the feeling that, in gross power, it is a terminal that is left over.
Huawei has not stopped for two years trying to offer a way out while the veto remains in force. But none of them provides the same comfort as having Google services as standard. And without those services, among other things, there is no access to the Google app store. And that’s big words in the Android world.
The alternatives have indeed increased quite a bit. It is no longer strange to find the Huawei store icon next to the Google or Apple store when we are invited to download an application. And the number of available applications continues to grow.
In the case of this Huawei Nova 9 SE, we also have Petal Search, the substitute for Google services that, to get out of trouble, can help us.
Petal Search Screenshots
The searches are pretty complete and valid for a smartphone. As for the applications that interest us, we search various sources and repositories, always offering us the best alternative.
But ending up installing some applications from third-party repositories for which Huawei is also not responsible is not quite what one is looking for in an Android terminal for the general market.
More fast charges like this
The Huawei Nova 9 SE is presented on the market with a 4000 mAh battery, an amount that a few years ago would have seemed outrageous but which, especially in this range of terminals, is no longer unreasonable.
Here Huawei has not wanted to go beyond that capacity to offer a terminal that, let us remember, is significant, suitably thin and weighs less than 200 grams.
The Huawei NOva 9 SE bets on a lower capacity battery so that the weight is not high, but it provides a fantastic fast charge of 66 W.
The result leaves us again on the right step. With this battery and a consumption use of the terminal, the Huawei Nova 9 SE can get to the end of the day without tightening our belts too much. But if you abuse the game or camera, for example, you should not get lost.
We have averaged just under 28 hours of autonomy in our accurate tests, with between 6-7 hours of active screen.