Honor Magic 2 teased - no notch, a pop-up camera and voice assistant 'YoYo'

At the launch of the Honor Play at IFA 2018, we were treated to a tasty little teaser for a new phone from the brand: the Honor Magic 2.

This - unsurprisingly - follows the Honor Magic, launched in Asian markets in 2016, and will bring 'more innovation' when it debuts in December this year.

Despite only being a teaser there were a number of interesting tidbits given out - the first being the ever-so-slightly-creepy 'YoYo' voice assistant.

Well, at least that what we assume it is... the voiceover simply said 'Hello, YoYo', to which a young voice replied: 'I'm here [giggle]! What's up?'

No more information was given, although we did get to see the phone in action, complete with the manual sliding camera, which allows the Magic 2 to shed the notch.

Some will note the similarities to the Oppo Find X on this phone, but where that has a mechanical, automatic camera that pops up, it's a manual slide on the Honor Magic 2.

We don't know any further specs for the phone (other than it'll be using Huawei's new Kirin 980 chipset), other than assuming it's going to be sold fairly globally given it was shown off at the European launch of the Play.

But... why?

It's interesting that Honor would want to create its own artificially intelligent (AI) assistant, given the huge investment and effort it takes for a brand to get such a thing accepted by the public - just looking at the apathy to Samsung's Bixby assistant paints such a picture.

That said, Honor has long-touted its status as one of the first brands to bring AI smarts to phones - the Honor Magic was the first device it used such branding on - so the Honor Magic 2 seems like a natural fit if Honor is going to go down this route.

Will we see the same skill applied to other Huawei phones? Given it's using the Kirin 980 chipset that will be used in other flagship handsets, it's fair to assume we'll be seeing YoYo used in further devices soon.

  • IFA 2018 is Europe's biggest tech show. The TechRadar team is in Berlin to bring you all the breaking news and hands-on first impressions of new phones, watches and other tech as they're announced.
Gareth Beavis
Formerly Global Editor in Chief

Gareth has been part of the consumer technology world in a career spanning three decades. He started life as a staff writer on the fledgling TechRadar, and has grown with the site (primarily as phones, tablets and wearables editor) until becoming Global Editor in Chief in 2018. Gareth has written over 4,000 articles for TechRadar, has contributed expert insight to a number of other publications, chaired panels on zeitgeist technologies, presented at the Gadget Show Live as well as representing the brand on TV and radio for multiple channels including Sky, BBC, ITV and Al-Jazeera. Passionate about fitness, he can bore anyone rigid about stress management, sleep tracking, heart rate variance as well as bemoaning something about the latest iPhone, Galaxy or OLED TV.