Huawei has a new phone in town: the Y9a.

The device is very new, and was actually announced less than a week ago (September 7).

We have it in the house for assessment, and for housekeeping reasons, the Y series from Huawei has been making an appearance in Kenya, and other markets for an extended period.

They range from entry level lines such as the Y5 all the way to the mid-range Y9 line.


Huawei Y9a

I have been testing the TECNO Camon 16 Premier for a week, and that device is big for a lot of hands, including mine. The Y9a is smaller and lighter (it is still a big smartphone by all standards), and that is a good thing in my book.

On the whole, Huawei has not done anything substantial from a design point of view; it is a 6.63” slab that has skipped a punched in selfie snapper for a motorized solution (not a first for the Y series) – making the experience very immersive and clean, and the quad rear lenses are placed around a circular bump as we saw with the Mate 30 series from 2019.

Huawei Y9a

The fingerprint scanner is not under the display; it is built under the power button.

The SIM tray is at the bottom edge alongside a single speaker and USB C port for charging and data transfer. The top side has the aforementioned moving selfie cam and headphone jack (earphones are suspiciously missing in the package).

Huawei Y9a 1

Setting up the device is quick as is other Huawei devices.

You, of course, are not getting Google services and apps here, but AppGallery has been preloaded with some popular titles. I have since installed the majority of the apps I use – and those that require Google services to work have been left out. It is an issue that a lot of people are going to be uncomfortable with, but we hope the bad blood between Huawei and the Trump administration will be a thing of the past when Joe Biden wins in December.

These are times that mid-range chipsets perform admirably. This is the case here: setting up the device and fetching my apps and backups did not slow down the Y9a. The package is powered by an MTK G80 chipset with 8 GB of RAM. There is also a healthy 128 GB of storage.

The 4300 mAh cell is substantial, and tops up turbo fast using the 40W charger. In other words, you can go from 0 to 70% in 30 minutes. These are features that are sometime dedicated to high-end devices, but I am glad they are trickling down to affordable handhelds (the more expensive nova 7i has the same charging brick too).

We will be testing the device for a thorough review in the coming days.

Lastly, pricing details have not been revealed, but we expect to range from KES 24K to 27K.

Huawei Y9a Specifications and Price in Kenya

DisplayTypeFullview display | TFT LCD
Resolution 2400 by 1080
PlatformOperating SystemEMUI 10.1 and Android 10
ChipsetMediaTek G80 processor
CPUOcta-core (2x2.0 GHz Cortex-A75 & 6x1.8 GHz Cortex-A55)
GPUMali-G52 MC2
ExternalmicroSD, up to 512GB
NetworkTechnologyDual 4G Volte
CameraMain64MP quad rear camera setup that includes the main 64MP wide(f/1.8), 8MP ultra-wide(f/2.4 and 120-degree FOV), 2MP depth sensor(f/2.4) and 2MP macro lens(f/2.4)
Front16MP pop-up selfie camera
BatterySize4300mAh battery that will charge using a 40W Supercharge
ColorsMidnight Black, Space Silver and Sakura Pink.
Featuresside-mounted fingerprint sensor
PriceKES 31000


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