Huawei P Smart (2017) review

The P Smart offers an 18:9 screen for the budget buyer

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The Huawei P Smart is a good way to get an ultra-wide 18:9 screen phone at a sensible price.

There are the usual compromises with camera quality and raw power at this price, and the P Smart is not quite the best day-to-day performer in its class.

However, we didn't find anything that should put too many people off if you find it offered as part of an attractive contract deal.

Who's this for?

The Huawei P Smart is for people who want a phone on an affordable contract, but still want a modern design and a metal build rather than a basic plastic mobile.

Should you buy it?

Find the right deal for the Huawei P Smart and there are few reasons to delay, as long as the occasional stutter isn't going to annoy you.

You can potentially save even more with a Moto G5S, but it has a less up-to-date design and only a single-lens camera. Or you could opt for the newer Moto G6, which only costs a little more.

Want some alternative options? Consider the following three phones.

Honor 9 Lite

The Honor 9 Lite is the Huawei P Smart’s cousin. They share a lot of the same components, but the Honor has a glass back instead of an aluminium one. And a higher-end selfie camera. So, do you want glass or aluminium?

Moto G6

It’s a little newer and a little more expensive than the Huawei P Smart, but the Moto G6 has the same aspect ratio, the same screen resolution and a bit more power.

It also has a dual-lens camera of its own and overall we'd probably give it the edge if you can stretch to the extra cost, though battery life is similar.

Samsung Galaxy J5

Samsung’s cheapest phone we wouldn’t mind using day-to-day is the Galaxy J5. It has an aluminium shell, a decent 13MP camera and an Exynos CPU of roughly the same power (if an even weaker GPU).

Its display is OLED rather than LCD, but is also of much lower resolution, 720p, and doesn’t have the Huawei’s wide aspect ratio.

First reviewed: February 2018

Andrew Williams

Andrew is a freelance journalist and has been writing and editing for some of the UK's top tech and lifestyle publications including TrustedReviews, Stuff, T3, TechRadar, Lifehacker and others.