The Huawei Y5 was one of the best entry-level devices upon its release in 2019. It featured faux leather casing, a MediaTek Helio A22 Chipset, and best of all, a very affordable price tag at under Php 5,000.
This year, we’re revisiting this budget smartphone and assessing whether or not it’s still deserving of its best entry-level title. If you’re considering the Huawei Y5 as an option, read the rest of our in-depth review to learn more about it.
Our Criteria for Reviewing the Huawei Y5
Design and External Features
We looked at the phone’s overall aesthetic and its external functions in our assessment.
Performance and Applications
We determined how dependable the Huawei Y5 is in terms of overall balance, fluidity, and functionality.
We checked the quality of the phone’s front and back cameras.
We tested how long the device’s average battery life is.
Value for Money
We assessed the phone’s value for money and compared how the Huawei Y5 fares against other units in the same price range.
Design and External Features
|Dimensions||147.1 x 70.8 x 8.5 mm (5.79 x 2.79 x 0.33 in)|
|Weight||146 g (5.15 oz)|
|Build||Glass front, plastic back, plastic frame|
|SIM||Single SIM (Nano-SIM) or Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by)|
|Audio||3.5mm audio jack, microphone, loudspeaker|
|Colors||Midnight Black, Modern Black, Sapphire Blue, Amber Brown|
The most noticeable feature of the Huawei Y5 is its build. This phone has a faux leather finish that’s available in two different colors – Modern Black and Amber Brown.
It also comes in Sapphire Blue and Midnight Black plastic casing options.
Its feel sets it apart from other phones in this price range. The unit is quite light, weighing around 146g, and a comfortable size that can easily fit in the palm of your hand (or pockets).
Although bezel-less phones were popularized in 2018-2019, the Huawei Y5 still has thick bezels, especially at the bottom where the Huawei logo is located. The top and side bezels are thinner, and a dewdrop notch sits on top to house the front cam.
On its left side, you can find the SIM card slot and a dedicated micro SD card slot. We love that you have the option to choose between a single-SIM or dual-SIM phone model, as not everyone requires a dual-SIM phone.
We also appreciate the option for expandable storage, in case the phone’s built-in storage won’t be enough for you. On the opposite side, you’ll find the volume buttons as well as the power buttons, which we think are standard for most phones.
The 3.5mm headphone jack is situated on top, while its microphone, loudspeaker, and micro USB port are located at the bottom. The phone’s buttons are made of hard plastic and give off a nice, clicky feel without seeming cheap.
Altogether, we think this is one of the best phone models Huawei has released. It has a finish that’s hard to find even among other phones of higher value.
It’s also the type of phone that doesn’t require a phone case, so this might be attractive to some.
Performance and Applications
|IPS LCD |
5.71 inches, 81.4 cm2 (~78.1% screen-to-body ratio)
720 x 1520 pixels, 19:9 ratio (~295 ppi density)
|Android 9.0 (Pie), EMUI 9 |
Mediatek MT6761 Helio A22 (12 nm)
Quad-core 2.0 GHz Cortex-A53
|microSDXC (dedicated slot) |
16GB 2GB RAM, 32GB 2GB RAM eMMC 5.1
|Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot |
4.2, A2DP, LE
Yes, with A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS
Yes (market/region dependent) - AMN-LX1 only
|Special Features||Sensors||Accelerometer, Proximity sensor|
The first thing we notice at startup is the phone’s bright and vibrant display. The Huawei Y5 utilizes Android 9 Pie with the EMUI 9 skin, and it has a relatively large screen-to-body ratio.
There’s a setting to have the dewdrop display notch visible or hide it entirely, but hiding it will result in a thicker top bezel. You can also switch between a standard home screen style or a drawer style in the settings.
The Huawei Y5 is powered by a Mediatek MT6761 chip, a PowerVR GE8320 GPU, and 2GB of RAM. Basic tasks like messaging, streaming, and web browsing are fine, but do note that you probably won’t be able to multitask much with this phone.
This is because the Huawei Y5 is running on half of today’s standard 4GB RAM. While this is to be expected due to its price, the RAM limits the phone’s overall capabilities.
And while the phone can handle some graphics-heavy games at the lowest setting, you’ll still experience frame drops and substantial lagging. The smartphone will do fine with more casual games, though.
Besides these cons, it has a 5.71-inch, HD 1560 x 720 resolution screen that will work perfectly for casual video viewing and social media use. We also like that it has an audio jack for your headphones.
This smartphone has some built-in Huawei apps and tools such as the Huawei App Gallery, HiCare, Phone Clone, Backup, Party Mode, and Ride Mode. Third-party apps like Facebook, Messenger, and Netflix are also installed.
We also like that Huawei offers two storage options for the Y5 – a 16GB and a 32GB one. This gives buyers more leeway for planning their storage.
Lastly, the Huawei Y5 comes with password protection and a face unlock feature, the latter being an unusual feature for devices in this price range. The face unlock feature is a bit glitchy, especially in low light, but it still offers an added layer of protection.
|13MP, f/1.8, PDAF |
LED flash, HDR, panorama
|Selfie Camera||Single||5MP, f/2.2|
The Y5 has a 13MP back camera stacked vertically with an LED flash – this portion is surrounded by a gold lining, which we think adds a more refined feel to the device. It also has a 5MP front camera that’s located in the dewdrop notch.
Although you won’t get top-notch photos out of a 13MP back camera, it’s still sufficient enough for all practical purposes. We also love that you can shoot videos at 1080p and 30fps.
The back cam also produces vibrant and sharp photos and videos. However, the device has no stabilization feature, so your footage might end up looking shaky.
As for selfies, shots are decent enough for a 5MP camera – but you’ll have to take them in ample lighting, as photos taken in low light tend to be blurred and grainy. There also isn’t a flash for the front camera, which is one of its biggest cons.
The back camera has features such as HDR and panorama, and the front camera has a beauty filter slide.
|Battery||Li-Ion 3020 mAh, non-removable|
|Longevity||12 hours on average (with non-stop use of WIFI)|
The Huawei Y5 uses a 3020 mAh battery, which isn’t anything out of the ordinary for smartphones released in 2019. However, it’s proven to be reliable and suitable for many uses.
It can handle around 12 hours of video streaming when connected to WIFI. You can also charge the phone to full from 0% in just about 2 hours, which is quite impressive for a 3020 mAh battery.
If you want to prolong its life, you can also adjust your phone’s brightness, close applications on standby, and reduce your WIFI, LTE, and hotspot use. We reckon you can probably extend your smartphone use to 13 hours with proper management.
We have noticed that the battery heats up quite a bit during web browsing, video and photo editing, as well as data manipulation. So, we recommend keeping track of your battery health often.
Another downside is that the battery is non-removable, which means you would probably need a dedicated service to have it replaced.
Value for Money
|Original Price (2019)||Php 5,990|
|Current Market Price (2022)||Php 4,990|
For our readers who are wondering whether the Huawei Y5 can still hold its own against other models at the same price range, here are some points for comparison.
The Xiaomi Redmi 9A was released just a year after the Huawei Y5, so it’s unsurprising that the latter has a few upgraded specs. It features a triple-back camera and a massive 5000 mAh battery that can power over 14 hours of non-stop use.
You can also choose to upgrade to 64GB of storage at a higher price – but besides these, their specifications and their price points are very similar.
The Samsung Galaxy A11 also features a triple back camera, a better 8MP front camera, and a more powerful 4000 mAh battery. It also has a fingerprint scanner at the back, which the Huawei Y5 doesn’t have.
Additionally, it has an upgraded 3GB RAM which also makes it suitable for multitasking more apps or heavier gaming. It was sold at a higher price during its release in 2020, but its price has recently gone down to match that of the Huawei Y5.
Finally, we’re comparing the Huawei Y5 to the Y6 Pro, which released in the same year not long after the release of Y5. Sold at a higher price, the Y6 Pro is equipped with a bigger RAM, more upgrade options for storage, and a better camera.
The Y6 Pro also has a larger display screen, thinner bezels, and comes in a completely different casing. The Y5 comes in faux leather, while the Y6 Pro comes in a hard plastic casing.
And while both are hailed as fantastic entry-level smartphones, we think that both the Huawei Y5 and Y6 Pro are outshined by some newer releases like the Samsung Galaxy A11.
In general, an upgraded RAM is harder to pass up as it acts as the backbone of a smartphone’s basic functions. Brands like Nokia, Infinix, and Vivo have also been launching impressive entry-level phones recently.
Overall, the Huawei Y6 Pro still packs a punch as a fantastic entry-level smartphone. At less than Php 7000, it has capable specs that allow it to run smoothly for everyday use.
For us, the Huawei Y5 is still a very capable entry-level smartphone. At a very affordable price of Php 4,990, you can enjoy the smooth and satisfying use of its features and applications.
Our favorite features are its vibrant display, faux-leather casing options, and its fast-charging, long-lasting battery.
However, there are quite a few smartphones at the same price that can outperform it, especially more recent releases. But if you’re looking for a sleek and unique-looking budget phone for everyday use, then the Huawei Y5 definitely won’t fail you.