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Huawei Nova 2i or Sony Xperia XA1 Plus?

Ian Bartolare asks, “Which is better: Huawei Nova 2i or Sony Xperia XA1 Plus?

Nova 2I Vs Xa1 Plus | Huawei Nova 2I Or Sony Xperia Xa1 Plus?

In this match, we will be having two mid-range smartphones with excellent camera qualities. Let’s begin.

The Huawei Nova 2i is a rising star among the latest mid-range smartphones that are out on the market. It has a 5.9″ IPS LCD display with 18:9 aspect ratio and 2160 x 1080 resolution, Kirin 659 chipset, 64GB internal storage, 4GB RAM, a 16MP + 2MP dual rear cameras with LED flash, 13MP + 2MP dual front cameras, and 3,340mAh battery.

The Sony Xperia XA1 Plus was announced last month and is the company’s mid-range smartphone. It has a 5.5″ FULL HD IPS display with 1920 x 1080 resolution, a Helio P20 chipset, 32GB internal storage, 4GB RAM, a 23MP rear camera with hybrid Autofocus, wide-angle lens and LED flash, an 8MP front camera with wide-angle lens, and 3,430 battery with Quick Charging.

Let us look at their detailed specs:

Huawei Nova 2i Sony Xperia XA1 Plus
Display 5.9-inch 18:9 IPS LCD display @ 2160 x 1080 pixels 5.5-inch Full HD IPS display @ 1920 x 1080 pixels
CPU HiSilicon Kirin 659 2.36GHz octa-core 2.3GHz MediaTek Helio P20 Octa Core
GPU Mali-T830 Mali-T880 MP2
Memory – 64GB internal storage
– 32GB internal storage
Camera – 16MP+2MP rear cameras, f/2.2 with LED Flash
– 13MP+2MP front cameras, f/2.0
– 23MP f/2.0 rear camera: Hybrid Autofocus, 24mm wide-angle F2.0 lens, HDR, SteadyShot
– 8MP f/2.0 Exmor R front camera: up to ISO 3200, 23mm wide-angle lens, HDI, SteadyShot
Battery 3,340mAh Li-Ion battery 3430mAh battery with Quick Charging (Pump Express+ 2.0)
OS Android 7 Nougat with Huawei EMUI 5.1 Android 7 Nougat

Here are the advantages of each smartphone.

Huawei Nova 2i 

+ Larger screen size

+ Larger aspect ratio

+ Higher screen resolution

+ Better performing CPU (single-core process)

+ Larger internal storage

+ Dual rear cameras

+ Dual front cameras

+ Higher front camera resolution

Sony Xperia XA1 Plus

+ Slightly better performing CPU (multi-core process)

+ Better performing GPU

+ Higher rear camera resolution

+ Wide-angle lenses (rear and front camera)

+ Slightly larger battery

+ Quick Charging tech

+ USB Type-C


In terms of display, the Nova 2i has the upper hand with its 5.9″ screen size, 18:9 aspect ratio, and 2160 x 1080 resolution. In addition to that, the device has a slim-bezel design which makes it the better pick if you want a good viewing experience. The Xperia XA1 Plus has a good display however it has a thick-bezel design which was made for durability rather than thinness.


For their CPUs, the Kirin 659 of the Nova 2i has a better performing speed in terms of single-core processes. The Xperia XA1 Plus’s Helio P20, on the other hand, is a better pick when it comes to multi-core processes. Their GPUs, however, have a significant difference in terms of gaming capabilities. the former’s chipset is only equipped with the Mali-T830 GPU while the latter’s has the Mali-T880 GPU. From this, we can say that the Xperia XA1 Plus has better gaming capabilities.


Now, we go to the camera department. This is the aspect where both smartphones and companies excel in. The Nova 2i has a quad-camera setup which means that there are dual rear and front cameras on this device. the secondary lenses provide a “bokeh effect” for the photos that the smartphone produce. Here are the sample shots from our review on the device. As for the Xperia XA1 Plus, it has a higher rear camera resolution and offers a lot of camera features as well. The rear and front cameras both have wide-angle lenses which means that each shooter can cover a wider area than usual and produce good image qualities. We do not have sample photos for the smartphone yet but if we get our hands on it, we’ll definitely test it out.


For their battery capacities, their difference is not that huge since the Nova 2i has a 3,340mAh while the Xperia XA1 Plus has 3,430mAh. However, in terms of charging time, the latter wins since it has a Quick Charging technology in which the former does not have. We will also take note that the latter has a USB Type-C port while the former only has a Micro USB port. The Nova 2i lasted for 8 Hours and 46 Minutes when we tested its battery performance. We do not have any results for the Xperia XA1 Plus yet since we do not have any unit as of the moment.


For their overall performance, the Nova 2i performs faster than the Xperia XA1 Plus in terms of single-core processes while the latter is a bit faster when it comes to multi-core processes. Sony’s offering is also better in terms of gaming while Huawei’s offering is better in terms of viewing experience.


The Huawei Nova 2i is priced at Php14,990 while the Xperia XA1 Plus is priced at Php16,990.

Which of these smartphones would you choose? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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