Huawei Nova 5T review

Flagship-grade without the price

(Image: © Future)

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(Image credit: Future)

The Nova 5T is a mature follow-up to the Nova 4 and a decent phone that’s brimming with value. It makes high-end features like an extensive quad camera setup and speedy processor accessible to those with tight budgets. It can take some stunning shots, last you a day of use, and can handle powerful tasks like graphics-intensive gaming and multitasking on its large crisp screen with ease. 

We also liked its compact form and the new coat of paint and branding make it feel fresh. But Huawei has made some compromises such as opting for an LCD screen panel instead of an OLED, not including wireless charging and not making the phone water resistant. If you can live without these extras, then the Nova 5T is a great phone that justifies its price tag in full.

If you can save a few hundred AED more you can get yourself an even better deal with the OnePlus 7T and the Huawei P30 which has seen price cuts over the year and offer better screens and more storage.

There’s also a lot of uncertainty surrounding Huawei phones at the moment and whether they’ll continue to get support for Google services. While this is not an issue with the Nova 5T which comes with Google Apps and services installed, it’s something to take into account in your final decision.

Who is it for?

The Nova 5T’s versatile camera setup, beefy chipset and large screen will please both shutterbugs and folks on the lookout for an affordable powerful media and gaming device. The battery endurance is enough to last a day of moderate use but note that storage is not expandable and no headphone jack means you’ll have to rely on bluetooth headsets.

Should I buy it?

At AED 1,599, the Nova 5T gives you bang for your buck and then some. The feature set and performance it offers puts it well above mid-range phones and a smidge below top-tier flagships. And it all comes wrapped in an attractive design. 

You get great performance and decent battery life despite the battery-straining LCD screen. Sure, the phone lacks some bells and whistles reserved for pricier devices, but you still get one of the best camera setups possible in this price bracket. 


OnePlus 7T

(Image credit: Future)

At AED 1949, the OnePlus 7 Pro is only a few hundred AED more expensive than the Nova 5T but it’s well worth the extra investment for a speedier processor and much better screen tech.

Read OnePlus 7T full review

Huawei P30

(Image credit: Future)

At AED 2,000 - The P30 closely matches the Nova 5T in terms of specs with an excellent camera setup that’s only slightly better than Nova 5T. But with the P30 you also get a better design and a top-tier screen.

Read Huawei P30 full review

Honor 20 Pro

(Image credit: Future)

At AED 1,999 - The Honor 20 Pro looks and acts pretty much like the Nova 5T but for just a couple of hundred Dirhams more you can snag double the memory.

Read Honor 20 Pro full review

Ammara is a tech and gaming writer with with an irrational love for all things Apple, indie games and cyberpunk novels. She handles social media for TechRadar Middle East with a keen interest in video creation and covers news and reviews across everything. Away from the keyboard, Ammara can be found playing the latest game and browsing for more tech gadgets she doesn’t need. She is also the current office Wordle champ.