Accessibility in Huawei P8 Lite

Monday, 17 October, 2016

By Amóvil

Huaweil P8 lite in black

The Huawei P8 Lite is an affordable mid-range smartphone that includes accessibility settings that render it suitable for people with blindness, profound deafness and poor dexterity skills. We were able to review this device thanks to the collaboration of Movistar España.

General features and specifications

  • Operating system: Android 5.0 Lillipop, upgradable to version 6 Marshmallows
  • Processor: octa-core HighSilicon Kirin 620, 1.2 GHz.
  • Design: rectangular case with rounded corners with dimensions of 143 x 70.6 x 7.7 mm. It weighs 131 grams.
  • Display: 5 inches, IPS LCD with with 720 x 1280 pixels resolution protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3.
  • Main camera (backside): 13 megapixels with autofocus and LED flash.
  • Secondary camera (front-side): 5 megapixels. Supports videocalls.
  • Connectivity: NFC, Wi-FI Direct, A-GPS and Bluetooth 4.2.
  • Internal memory: 16 GB expandable up to 256 GB with microSD card.
  • RAM: 2 GB.

Accessibility review

The Huawei P8 Lite is customized with Huawei’s Android skin, Emotion UI 3.1 that was not designed with the need of people with disabilities in mind. For instance, the accessibility menu is located under Advance Settings in the Setting app. This forces users to spend more time exploring the Settings menu trying to figure out where this menu is located under. Some may even think there are no accessibility settings available.

In addition, the Accessibility menu does not have an intuitive structure. Options are not divided by type of disability, but in three categories which are Services, System and Display. This makes it hard to explore the menu more effectively. Also, this handset does not offer the possibility to activate an accessibility shortcut.


Blind people can use this device with TalkBack. The screen reader reads out loud the available visual content with some limitations. It fails to read aloud the predictive text feature and does not replace abbreviations with full words. This may cause confusion among some users.

However, this handset is unsuitable for people with low vision. The default font size is too small and some users will be unable to read the text. Although a feature to enlarge the font is offered, the largest size available is still insufficient.

Notwithstanding, there are a few features that may enhance the experience of users with vision impairments. These are Magnification gestures and Color Adjustment, a feature that improves color visibility to people with anomalous trichromacy, a type of color blindness.

The handset also includes an option to invert colors. The problem is that elements that come with a dark background by default turn a shade of bright white and does not improve visibility to some users with low vision.


We are unable to recommend the Huawei P8 Lite to people with hearing impairment for it is not compatible with hearing aids or cochlear implants. These users will not be able to use the T setting to handle phone calls. However, they might be able to do so with the M setting or Bluetooth if their hearing devices support it.

This handset is suitable to people with profound deafness. It supports instant messaging as well as videocalls. Deaf users can also activate captions for multimedia content.


The Huawei P8 Lite includes features that provide access to people with poor dexterity skills such as speed dialing, predictive text input, and a simple system to lock and unlock the display. Also, icons are large enough to allow a precise touch and physical keys are easy to press.

However, people with very little or no dexterity skills will have a hard time using this phone. The handset includes a version of Google Now that does not work properly. This app fails to recognize contact names entered by voice, forcing users to touch the screen.

Another barrier observed affecting these users is that the phone does not include a software that would make available the side buttons functions in the display. Because of this, controlling the device with writing sticks is not possible.


The Huawei P8 Lite does not offer specific accessibility features for people with comprehension issues due to old age, cognitive or learning disabilities. An important barrier was observed is in the design of the navigation keys located at the bottom of the display. It consists of a triangle, a square and a circle. This design hinders their experience for there is nothing that would help them readily know the functions of these keys.

For more information about the accessibility features available in this device, please consult our full accessibility report.

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