In 2018, bad notches happened with good Android phones. But the design trend for 2019 will be much better, judging by my first experience with the successor of the notch: the display of holes. The Honor View 20 is one of the first flagship phones with a selfie camera cutout that is literally just the camera. It's almost exactly the size of the opening that a punch does on sheets of paper, so I think the name is appropriate. And this helps to almost completely eliminate the top panel of the phone. Coming to View 20 of my Pixel 3 XL equipped with jumbo-notch was a revelation and a delight.
View 20 is already official in China but is still a few weeks away from its global launch at an event in Paris on January 21. (Be aware of our full analysis at this time.) For now, I can provide you with some facts about the phone and my first impressions about the life of the awl.
The screen of this mobile phone is a LCD that measures 6.4 inches diagonally and has a resolution of 2310 x 1080. Honor has done a clever engineering to create a cut on an LCD, which is a more complicated task than doing the same with a panel OLED. View 20 has good viewing angles, rich but not oppressive colors, and sharp enough to meet my needs. The aspect in what else seems to be the main competition is in its outdoor brightness.
As for the software experience, this will require a bit of refinement to get it right, but most applications are not affected. The clipping just pushes the notification and status icons to the middle of the screen and everything goes like it already did with notches. You can also choose to have a black bar across the screen if you are especially offended by the distinct cutouts on the front of the screen.
It's hard to think of Honor, a substitute brand for Huawei's consumer electronics business, as a competitive name at the highest level of smartphones. But this company did a pretty cool job of integrating the design feature that will dominate 2019 with its punching screen. And with specs such as a 4,000mAh battery, a 7nm Kirin 980 processor, a 48-megapixel camera, up to 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage, the View 20 is proving to be a very attractive start to the year.
Photography by Vlad Savov / The Verge