Huawei, a giant in telecom equipment space, has been long trying to establish itself in the same league as Apple and Samsung. Huawei’s association with Google for Nexus 6P is perhaps what gave the company large scale global recognition for the first time. In the successive years, Huawei played on the front foot and launched several industry-first innovations (mostly related to phone cameras) including interesting dual camera setups combining RGB and monochrome sensors, use of high-quality lenses, computational photography and more. (Huawei Mate 20 Pro Review हिंदी में पढ़िए)

The P20 Pro launched early last year managed to grab everyone’s attention and also had the best-rated cameras, it still wasn’t up there with the big boys. The Kirin 970 powering the phone wasn’t comparable to Snapdragon 845 back then and the EMUI software had some rough edges to polish.

The new Mate 20 Pro integrates all necessary changes and refinement, including the very capable 7nm process based Kirin 980 mobile platform. Has Huawei finally managed to deliver a class-leading flagship? Let’s find out in Smartprix’s Huawei Mate 20 Pro full review.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Review: What’s In the Box

The Mate 20 Pro box package is nothing extraordinary. It packs the Huawei’s 2018 flagship along with necessary peripherals. Here’s what you’ll find in Mate 20 Pro box:

  • Huawei Mate 20 Pro phone
  • USB Type-C Cable
  • Huawei 40W SuperCharger
  • SIM Ejector Tool
  • Huawei Type C Earphones
  • Huawei 3.5m to Type-C connector cable
  • Transparent Plastic Case
  • Documentation/Quick Start Guide

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Price and Specifications

Model Huawei Mate 20 Pro
Display 6.39 inches OLED display 2K+ 3120 x 1440, 538 PPI
Processor 2.6GHz octa-core HUAWEI Kirin 980
RAM 6GB
Internal Storage 128GB, expandable via nanoSD (256GB)
Software Android 9 Pie based EMUI 9
Rear Camera 40 MP (Wide Angle Lens, f/1.8 aperture) + 20 MP (Ultra Wide Angle Lens, f/2.2 aperture) + 8 MP (Telephoto, f/2.4 aperture)
Selfie Camera 24 MP, f/2.0 aperture
Battery 4200 mAh,  40W Super fast charger
Connectivity 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (wave2), 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz,Bluetooth 5.0, BLE, SBC, AAC, aptX, aptX HD, LDAC and HWA Audio,Type-C, USB 3.1 GEN1*,Type-C ear jack
Dimensions Width:72.3 mm; Height:157.8 mm; Depth:8.6 mm; Weight: 189 g
Huawei Mate 20 Pro Price In India is Rs 69,990

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Review: Design and Build Quality

In my opinion, the Mate 20 Pro is the most appealing device that Huawei has delivered so far. And by a margin. The moment you hold the Mate 20 Pro in hands, you know it’s every bit as premium as the best in business. Or perhaps even more.

Yes, it resembles a lot with Samsung Galaxy S9+ (review) thanks to dual curved display and symmetrical design but there are many things that reaffirm its originality. For instance, the Mate 20 Pro is more compact than the S9+ despite housing a bigger 6.39-inch display, the contrasting red tinge on the power button, and the Porsche Spyder’s Matrix headlights inspired rounded-square camera module adds character to the design. Huawei has added a well-equipped notch on top and extremely slim chin (thanks to foldable OLED) at the bottom.

Notch has it all:
  • Selfie camera
  • Earpiece (also act as a secondary speaker)
  • infrared camera
  • flood illuminator
  • Gyroscope sensor
  • Proximity sensor
  • LED Notification light

Even though Huawei has packed a more robust version of Face Unlock, the company continues to include a  fingerprint sensor, which has been embedded under the screen (more on it later). There is Gorilla Glass on both front and back,  though Huawei chooses not to specify the exact version of it.

I have been using the Mate 20 Pro Emerald Green variant which has a subtle vinyl-like pattern (Huawei calls it Hyper Optical Pattern) that you can also feel while caressing it. This also makes the phone less slippery and less prone to fingerprint smudges than usual glass back phones.

The Metallic rail running along the sides blends seamlessly with glass. The power button and Volume rocker are placed on the right edge. The left edge is a clean slate.

On the top edge, you will witness an IR blaster (which can be surprisingly useful) and a noise cancellation mic. There are no speaker grills on the phone since Huawei has tactfully hidden the speaker within the USB Type-C port. And the sound is only slightly repressed while charging and playing music simultaneously. If you are a fan of 3.5mm jack, well, not happening!

The Mate 20 Pro also matches its counterpart with regards to water and dust resistance. It is IP68 certified for dust and water resistance which we missed in earlier Huawei flagships.

All in all, the Mate 20 Pro’s design is truly flagship-grade. It is bold and dazzlingly beautiful smartphone by all means.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Review: Display, Face Unlock, and Fingerprint

Let’s talk about the Mate 20 Pro display now. The handset boasts of a 6.39-inch curved OLED screen sourced from BOE that can deliver 2K+ resolution. The quality is impressive, to say the least. In fact, the blacks are even deeper than what we get on Samsung AMOLED phones, and that’s saying something.

As for color calibration, users can choose between sRGB (Normal) and DCI-P3 (Vivid) color gamuts. I usually go for Normal profile on Huawei phones but preferred the well-calibrated DCI-P3 or vivid mode on the Mate 20 Pro. To conserve battery, Huawei has added smart resolution in Mate 20 Pro that automatically toggles between 2K and FHD+ resolution.

Personally, so far I have enjoyed watching content or playing games on the Mate 20 Pro screen. It has necessary Widevine L1 certification for HD and HDR content streaming from services like Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime and more.

Moving on, the Mate 20 Pro screen is also studded with an in-display finger scanner which, as per Huawei claims, is 30% quicker than Synaptic sensor that we see in Vivo and Oppo phones. Well, in day to day scenario the Mate 20 Pro’s Dynamic Pressure Sensor indeed felt snappier than any other UD sensor that we have tested so far. It is just milliseconds slower than regular capacitive sensors.

Also, there’s an Apple Face ID like fancy face unlock feature that uses 3D depth sensor and dot projector present in the notch. At the start, we were little skeptical, but it works effectively in both light and dark ambiance (well, most of the time).

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Review: Performance and Software

The Mate 20 Pro runs on EMUI 9 based on latest Android 9.0 Pie. If you already have some experience with EMUI, then you must know all apps are allied on the home screen by default. The interface has tons of features and aggressive RAM management. Well, the EMUI 9 has been refined and optimized to take advantage of the high-end hardware.

There are on-screen navigation buttons which can be swapped with gestures control which frankly aren’t the easiest and hamper overall experience especially while using certain apps. Huawei’s regular knock features – knock to take screenshot or knock-and-slide to split the screen, all made it to Mate 20 Pro as well.

While Google’s Digital Wellbeing feature is currently limited to stock android phones, Huawei has come up with its own ‘Digital Balance’ in EMUI 9.0. This feature lets you keep an eye on your phone usage habits. The Bedtime option, when turned on, mutes all screen colors after the set time. Then there is Password Vault (save login details locally), Private Space (creates separate zone), File Save (encrypts your file on local storage), Smart assistance, Wireless projection and lot more.

The Mate 20 Pro is one of the best performing smartphones in the market today. Credit for the exquisite performance of this beautiful beast goes to Kirin 980 SoC. It is, in fact, the world’s first 7nm Mobile chipset. It is packed with new ARM Cortex-A76 cores, four ARM Cortex -A53 cores, the new Mali-G76 MP10 GPU, and dual NPUs. The Chipset is accompanied by 6GB LPDD4X memory and 128GB UFS 2.1 storage.

Huawei’s GPU Turbo 2.0 also debuts in EMUI 9.0 which is also available on Mate 20 Pro. The company claims it has lower touch input latency and improved performance in supported games. However, only half a dozen games support Turbo acceleration, and PUBG is one of them. Does it make any difference to the overall gaming experience? Well, it’s hard to tell. Having said that, I have played almost entire PUBG Mobile Season 4 on the Mate 20 Pro and I had a great time with flawless performance. Overall, there’s hardly anything to complain about with regards to the Mate 20 Pro performance.

Quick Glance:  Huawei Mate 20 Pro Antutu, Geekbench, 3D Mark Gamer’s Benchmark Scores

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Benchmark Scores: Antutu (left), Geekbench (center) and 3DPCmark (right). These benchmarks were calculated in Performance mode.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Camera Review

The camera is the most talked about aspect of the Mate 20 Pro and why shouldn’t it be? It’s primarily the same Leica tuned triple camera as the one on P20 Pro. However, this time the 20MP monochrome sensor has been replaced with a wide-angle one.

The phone boasts of a triple-rear camera system featuring a 40MP sensor (f/1.8 aperture), a 20MP sensor (Ultra Wide Angle 16mm lens, f/2.2 aperture), and an 8MP sensor (80mm 3x Telephoto lens, f/2.4 aperture). The tri-lens array is optically stabilized, supports PDAF, contrast detection, and laser autofocus systems.

Huawei, by default, delivers 10MP photos using pixel binning where it combines information from four pixels to one. Still, you can take 40MP shots if you feel like by changing the default camera settings. The 40MP sensor does a lot more work than you think. Huawei also uses it to create 5X hybrid zoom by combining data from Telephoto lens.

As far as mobile photography goes, the Mate 20 Pro is up there glaring at the competition. It takes really impressive shots even when the conditions are not really favorable. What’s really impressive is how consistently it gets the metering right.

What else has changed from the P20 Pro to Mate 20 Pro is Huawei’s Master AI. The Huawei Kirin 980’s dual NPU along with EMUI 9.0 has neutralized Master AI’s ebullience a little and has matured well. It can now detect more scenes and object than before and tweak the colors and other aspects accordingly. Images shot with Master AI turned on produce results as if the images were fine-tuned in Lightroom or Snapseed. The auto mode can now automatically detects a person and switch to Portrait mode which generally works well. Though, it doesn’t allow you to adjust blur manually.

The best part of the Mate 20 Pro camera is its night mode. It takes a bunch of shots at multiple exposures in within a few seconds and then flawlessly blends them into a single image. The images shot using night mode look clean and shows great dynamic range – even in situations when there is hardly any light available.

The normal point-and-shoot ‘Photo Mode’ delivers good low light shots too. There’s 0.6 wide angle, 3X optical, 5X hybrid zoom, and 10X cropped zoom – all of which comes handy in different situations.

The Huawei Mate 20 Pro selfie camera doesn’t belong to the same league as rear cameras. It’s not bad by any means, it doesn’t really deliver results that can challenge Google Pixels or Samsung Galaxies of the day. Despite featuring a 24-megapixel sensor, it delivers selfies that are a little too soft for my liking. Having said that, I am not really much into selfies anyway.

Wide angle shot
Regular shot

 

5X zoom
10 Zoom

In terms of Videography, the Mate 20 Pro can record up to 4K@30fps. What’s important to highlight here is that OIS is not supported above 1080p @30fps. Yes, EIS (electronic image stabilization) is available all the way up to 4K resolution. Interestingly, Huawei is offering real-time filters like blurring background, selective colors and lot more. As far as video quality the Mate 20 Pro records sharp enough 4K footage, apt to use for Vlogging or for filming family videos.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Camera Samples

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Note: These images have been resized for web. To view them in full size check out this Flickr album.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Review: Battery and Charging

The Mate 20 Pro comes fitted with a 4,200mAh battery that won’t require you running to power outlet again and again through your day. Huawei has bundled the Mate 20 Pro with a 40W SuperCharger, which can tank up almost 70 percent battery in mere 30 minutes.  During our testing, the Mate 20 Pro took about one hour and ten minutes to go from zero to hundred percent.

What else is interesting is that the Mate 20 Pro is Qi wireless charging certified, and also supports reverse wireless charging which means you can use the phone as a wireless charging pad and refuel other Qi supported phones if need be. It’s not a feature that you will be using very often but is a really cool tech that you may brag about.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro Review: Should You By It?

Throughout the last year, I have cycled through numerous phones including Apple’s iPhone XS Max and Samsung’s Galaxy Note 9. One phone that left a lasting impression on me is the Huawei’s Mate 20 Pro. It’s an extremely charismatic phone that’s almost perfect in every which way.

Huawei has hardly cut any corners. It packs one of the best smartphone cameras in the market, an excellent OLED screen, impeccable build quality, spellbinding design, and the best Kirin chipset till date. In fact, it has numerous novel features and stuff groundbreaking flagships are made of.

Should you buy Huawei Mate 20 Pro? Sure, if you are willing to spend the premium, go ahead and buy the Mate 20 Pro without a doubt. It is one of the best smartphones in the market today and truly the most exciting thing Huawei’s launched in India till date.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro: Pro and Cons

Pros

  • Great cameras
  • Enticing design and display
  • Reliable Performance
  • Long lasting battery life
  • Blazing fast supercharging

 

Cons

  • Lacks 3.5 mm port
  • No autofocus for Selfies

 

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