Honor Magic3 unveiled with Snapdragon 888 Plus and huge camera array

Former Huawei sub-brand Honor has just announced its new flagship smartphone lineup. The Magic3 series consists of three phones that can once again boast Google apps and services as well as a packed spec sheet. Each device in the series features an 89° curved display, a powerful Snapdragon 888 Plus chipset, and an impressive selection of cameras, front and back.

By the time Huawei was hit with trade sanctions in the US, Honor had just hit its stride as the best budget flagship maker around. Its phones borrowed all the best bits from Huawei’s premium models but packaged them up for a more affordable price. After the trade ban decimated Huawei’s mobile business everywhere but China, it decided to sell the Honor sub-brand, and that means the return of Google apps and hopefully a return to form.

Magic3 Pro in white and black.

The top-of-the-line Magic3 Pro+ looks a lot like the Huawei x Porsche Design Mate 40 RS, with its hexagonal camera module and racing stripes. The Magic 3 and Magic 3 Pro aren’t quite as dramatic looking, but their large round camera housings create a symmetrical design that is certainly pleasing to the eye and something a little different in the current market. The entire series is bestowed with an enormous 6.76-inch OLED display, and while not everyone will be a fan of the curved sides, it makes for a provocative appearance.

Premium camera system on Magic3 Pro+.

Honor is talking up its new AI imaging capabilities, unsurprisingly, which it says produces best-in-class computational photography for great images every time. The Magic3 Pro+ sports four rear cameras, including a 64MP Monochrome sensor, a 50MP wide, a 64MP 126° ultra-wide, and a 64MP periscope telephoto. The primary 50MP camera has a sizable 1/1.28-inch sensor with Full Pixel Octa Phase Detection (PD) AutoFocus that should allow for better imaging of moving objects. The telephoto (with OIS) is good for 3.5x optical zoom and up to 100x with digital assistance. The ultra-wide can also be used for detailed 2.5cm macro shots.

The Magic3 and Magic3 Pro have slightly lesser camera offerings.

In a somewhat surprising announcement, Honor says the Magic 3 series is the first-ever to be IMAX enhanced. In practical terms, this means that Magic-Log and cinematic Level 3D LUT (Look Up Table) video capabilities for “movie-grade” video capture. We’ll have to test that out to see if it really adds up to anything other than a fancy marketing piece.

Expect solid battery life thanks to a 4,600mAh cell, and there’s super-fast 66W wired or 50W wireless charging on board, as well as reverse wireless charging. All models have an IP68 rating for peace of mind. You may have noticed the dual punch-hole notch on the front — this enables secure 3D face unlocking. The phones will run Magic UI 5.0, based on Android 11. Configurations range from 8-12GB of RAM and 128-512GB of storage.

Magic3 Pro+ with ceramic finish.

The Honor Magic3 will cost €899 and comes in Golden Hour and Blue Hour synthetic leather finishes, as well as standard glass-backed black and white options. The Magic3 Pro is priced at €1,099 and comes in the same colors except for no blue. The Magic3 Pro+ will not be cheap, at €1,499, but it gets a fancy ceramic back (in black or white). The phones are exclusive to mainland China for now, but global availability will be announced soon.

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