|Superb screen||Average battery|
|Great camera performance||Camera can struggle at night|
|Impressive charging speeds||Picks up fingerprints|
The Honor Magic 4 Pro is one of the best flagship phones of 2022 and easily rivals the likes of the OnePlus 10 Pro. It has issues but they're all very minor and are buried by its strengths.
The Honor Magic 4 Pro shows that Honor wants to be taken seriously. This once budget brand has here delivered a premium, sumptuous smartphone at a high-end price.
It’s priced in a way that will see it compete with the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus (if not quite the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra), the iPhone 13 Pro, and the OnePlus 10 Pro. But does it do enough to justify the price?
Between exceedingly fast wireless charging, top-tier power, a sublime screen and impressive cameras it certainly makes a strong first impression, but does anything hold the Honor Magic 4 Pro back? Read on to find out.
The Honor Magic 4 Pro has a 6.81-inch 1312 x 2848 OLED screen with a 120Hz refresh rate, around 460 pixels per inch, HDR10+ support, and a peak brightness of 1000 nits.
Those are all highly competitive specs – ones which put its display in line with the very best smartphones around.
Indeed the screen is one of the best things about this phone, and it has other highlights too beyond the headline specs. For example, the refresh rate can adjust all the way down to 1Hz when a high refresh rate isn’t needed, in order to conserve battery, and it has 1,920Hz PWM dimming, which should make it easier on your eyes.
It’s not quite as high resolution as – for example – the Sony Xperia 1 IV with its 4K display, but that’s overkill, and this still matches most flagships. The only thing some buyers might not like is that it’s curved – but for others that will be a selling point.
The Honor Magic 4 Pro has lots of glass and lots of curves, with both the screen and the rear being curvy, and the back panel being made of glass. There’s metal too though in the form of the frame.
The phone has miniscule bezels on the front and a shiny, glossy look on the rear. It also has a distinctive circular camera block – though we’ve seen similar from a few Huawei phones.
It’s got an IP68 rating too, so it’s both water and dust resistant. There are a few minor issues with the design though. One is the size, because at 163.6 x 74.7 x 9.1mm it’s fairly large and slightly thicker than some flagships. But not by much.
Another potential issue is the dual-lens camera cut-out on the front, which breaks up the screen more than the camera cut-outs on most phones, but then that’s the price you pay for having two lenses there – more on which further down.
Finally, and perhaps most significantly, while the back looks great, it can also attract and highlight fingerprints, so you might find you often want to wipe it down.
The Honor Magic 4 Pro is powered by a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, which is also found in the likes of the OnePlus 10 Pro and the Oppo Find X5 Pro, so you know it’s good. In fact, at the time of writing it’s possibly the best chipset available for Android phones.
The Magic 4 Pro also has 8GB of RAM, which isn’t as much as some handsets, but is still plenty. There is a 12GB model too, but this one isn’t widely available in the UK.
In any case, it’s a speedy, powerful phone, and it should be able to comfortably run any app or game available on Android.
There’s quite a lot to say about the cameras on the Honor Magic 4 Pro, both because they’re generally good, and because there’s so many of them, with four on the back and two on the front.
On the rear, there’s a 50MP f/1.8 wide camera, a 50MP f/2.2 ultrawide one (with a 122-degree field of view), a 64MP f/3.5 periscope one (offering 3.5x optical zoom), and a time of flight (ToF) 3D depth sensor.
The depth sensor isn’t really a dedicated camera, so much as an aid to the other lenses, all of which perform well, with the main (wide) sensor in particular being able to capture superb, detail-packed photos.
The ultrawide meanwhile also does quite well, and can double as a macro camera, while the periscope telephoto lens isn’t just limited to 3.5x optical zoom – it can also offer up to 100x digital zoom, though of course you’ll lose a lot of quality in the process.
None of the lenses other than the telephoto one have optical image stabilisation though, which is slightly disappointing and can hold them back in low light settings.
Still, it’s generally a good showing, as is video recording, which tops out at 4K at 60fps. The front cameras are worth a mention too, as this is that rare phone that has two of them – a 12MP f/2.4 ultrawide (which performs well and fits more in the shot than most selfie snappers), and a depth sensor, which helps with portrait shots and powers facial recognition – more on which below.
Thanks to the depth sensor on the front of the Honor Magic 4 Pro, the phone is able to offer proper 3D facial recognition, making its face unlock security method a lot more secure than it is on most Android phones. It’s a similar idea to what Apple offers with Face ID, if not quite as slick.
For those who’d rather use a fingerprint that’s an option too, as an under-display fingerprint scanner has also been included, and this works well also.
Beyond that, the Honor Magic 4 Pro runs Android 12, so its software is up to date. This is overlaid with the company’s Magic UI 6, which is reasonably pleasant to use.
The battery isn’t one of this phone’s highlights, but it’s not terrible either. It’s a 4,600mAh cell which should last you a day but not much more. That’s broadly in line with the longevity of most flagships, but the actual capacity is lower than some.
What is a highlight though is the charging, as whether you charge with or without wires you can do so at an incredibly fast 100W. That means you can get a full charge in around 30 minutes with wires and around 45 minutes if you go wireless (since wireless charging is slightly less efficient).
Memory meanwhile comes in at a hefty 256GB – though with no microSD card slot, and connectivity options include 5G, Bluetooth 5.2, and NFC.
The Honor Magic 4 Pro is a superb flagship which could help propel Honor into the mainstream. It’s certainly good enough to compete with almost any other phone.
The screen, design, cameras, performance and charging are all great for the most part, and while we have a few small niggles – the battery size, the lack of OIS on most cameras, the visible fingerprints – they don’t overly detract from what’s a generally excellent smartphone.
The price is high, and some buyers might prefer to go for a bigger brand at this price, but if you give Honor a chance you probably won’t be disappointed.