Bonjour! We’re in Paris for the launch of the new Huawei handsets. They’ve just taken the wraps off their latest devices – the Huawei P20 and Huawei P20 Pro. We have already seen a lot of leaks about these devices but now it’s time to put these leaks to rest and actually play with the devices to see what they are all about. We will be doing a full hands-on shortly.
Here’s the key details that we need to know about for now though. First things first – those cameras.
You will have seen from the earlier leaked pictures that the P20 and P20 pro are going to have different camera setups. This is absolutely the case. The former will feature the setup that we are already familiar with from the Mate 10 Pro released last year. To jog your memory this has a 12MP RGB sensor and a 20MP monochromatic sensor. These will combine to give a lossless 2x zoom. I would strongly encourage you to have a read of the Mate 10 Pro review I wrote to find out more about the camera tech for these phones. I was very impressed back then and I firmly believe that I’ll be suitably impressed again here. The Leica tech is still here too, so expect some brilliant shots.
The latter (P20 Pro) has got not two cameras, but three. Let’s dive into what that means. First we have a massive 40MP RGB sensor which is paired with the same 20MP Monochrome sensor from before. In addition though, we have an 8MP sensor which has 3x Optical Zoom. When you add this to the 8MP and 40MP sensors it delivers a 5x hybrid zoom. This means that we should see some truly stunning pictures from the device, and I am really excited to try it out.
Could we finally be at a point where we get the same pixel levels that were achievable on the Lumia 1020 from several years ago?
Both the cameras will support the new slow-motion capture mode of up to 960fps at 720p. This is very much like on the Samsung Galaxy S9. The P20 Pro can also record in 720p, 1080p and 4K for video.
On the front of both the phones, we will now find a massive 24MP selfie camera. This will feature Huawei’s AI-powered light-fusion to make your selfies brighter and “pop” more than before.
That leads me nicely onto the screens, but more importantly to the top of the screens. We have got a notch here as was rumoured. If I am honest it doesn’t look that bad and I can live with it. I am not actually averse to having a notch on phones if it allows for us to cram bigger screens onto smaller devices.
The P20 has a 5.8″ LCD panel and the P20 Pro uses a 6.1″ OLED panel. Both the panels are using a rather strange 18.7:9 aspect ratio which I believe is a first for that ratio. Resolution-wise we have a 1080 x 2240 screen on both devices ensuring that we have a very high PPI.
As we would have expected the phones both feature Huawei’s Kirin 970 processor paired with the onboard NPU that we saw on the Mate 10 Pro. The difference between the two phones will again come down to RAM. The P20 Pro will sport 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage with the P20 sporting 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. Battery-wise we have a 4000 mAh on the P20 Pro and a 3400mAh unit on the P20, both support Huawei’s 22.5W Supercharge, which is awesome and a feature I love on the Mate 10 Pro. Also, both feature USB Type C for charging.
We also do have the option of using either phone to output to a display like we have seen on the Mate 10 Pro which is an awesome feature. Neither phone will have a 3.5mm headphone jack as this is taken care of via audio over USB Type C as is the current trend. It is also a shame to see that neither phone supports microSD card expansion, but with the phones both rocking 128GB of onboard storage, it needn’t be a concern for most people. Lastly, the P20 Pro is going to be water resistant with an IP rating of IP67.
The body of the phone consists of Gorilla Glass 5 front and back with an all-aluminium sandwich in the middle. This gives the device a nice slender feel and they both sit nicely in the hand.
The fingerprint scanner has moved around to the front of the phone, unlike the previous position where it was on the back, like on the Mate 10 Pro. This also doubles up as a home button if you want it to. It is also capable of having gesture input for back or multitasking
Both devices also feature a full suite of connectivity options, as you would expect from high-end devices. These include NFC, Bluetooth 4.2 WiFi and 31 band LTE support.
Android Oreo 8.1 and EMUI 8.1 are in the driving seat with regard to the software and there have been some significant improvements made to the UI that address my concerns from the Mate 10Pro, which is nice to see. More about that in the hands-on session.
The phones are going to be available in a multitude of colours, with the standard colours will be Graphite Black, Midnight Blue,Pink Gold and a rather spectacular iridescent “Twilight” colour, which is stunning.
The pricing of the two phones is going to be pretty much on par with what the rest of the market is doing with regard to other flagship devices. the starting price for the P20 is €650 and the P20 Pro will come in at a higher €900. We are yet to see any news from the networks as to what they are planning on doing but we will keep you informed as soon as we know more.
HUAWEI UNVEILS THE HUAWEI P20 AND HUAWEI P20 Pro,
BREAKTHROUGHS IN TECHNOLOGY AND ART TO REDEFINE INTELLIGENT PHOTOGRAPHY
Images available here
PARIS – March 27, 2018 – At an exclusive launch event held today at the iconic Grand Palais, Huawei Consumer Business Group unveiled the much-anticipated HUAWEI P20 and HUAWEI P20 Pro. The HUAWEI P20 Pro features the world’s first Leica triple camera and both devices include unprecedented AI advances, combining technology and art to bring to life a ground-breaking smartphone experience.
Huawei set new expectations for smartphone photography with the launch of the HUAWEI P9, the first Leica dual camera. With the debut of the HUAWEI P20 Series, Huawei makes capturing professional quality images a truly effortless experience for everyone.
“We look for inspiration from artists to continuously evolve our approach to design and innovation,” said Richard Yu, Chief Executive Officer, Huawei Consumer Business Group. “The HUAWEI P20 Series builds on the legacy of our collaboration with Leica. With a breakthrough triple camera on the HUAWEI P20 Pro, an advanced dual camera on the HUAWEI P20, and powerful artificial intelligence on both, today’s most vibrant consumers can capture and share the brilliance of the world around them.”
Achieving DxOMark’s highest overall scores, the HUAWEI P20 Series includes advanced, intelligent camera systems that bring consumers features that ultimately enhance every part of the smartphone photography experience.
Key features of the HUAWEI P20 Series include:
- An advanced camera system to capture more light, more details and more beauty, featuring a revolutionary Leica triple camera and 5x Hybrid Zoom on the HUAWEI P20 Pro, and a Leica dual camera on the HUAWEI P20;
- Innovative photography features, including Master AI with AI-driven professional photography and HUAWEI AIS (AI Image Stabilisation), a powerful AI stabilisation technology;
- A timeless design with barely-there bezels and all-new gradient colours;
- Ultimate performance, featuring the NPU on Kirin 970 and EMUI 8.1 based on Android™ 8.1 for a premium and smooth user experience.
Huawei also unveiled the PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS (Race Sport). Continuing its collaboration with the exclusive luxury brand, the PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS features Porsche Design’s signature functional design language and Huawei’s cutting-edge technology and craftsmanship.
An Exquisite Combination of Art and Technology for the Fashion Forward
The HUAWEI P20 Series features a striking, fashion-forward aesthetic. Most notably, the HUAWEI P20 and HUAWEI P20 Pro come in all-new, exclusive, fashionable colours, Twilight and Pink Gold, achieved by applying several layers of NCVM* optical coatings underneath the glass back, so light hitting the surface refracts and creates a vivid, yet gradual change of hue. The HUAWEI P20 and HUAWEI P20 Pro are also available in Black and Midnight Blue.
The 5.8-inch screen HUAWEI P20 and 6.1-inch screen HUAWEI P20 Pro feature ultra-thin bezels and impressive screen-to-body ratios for better viewing experiences with more on-screen information, whether reading or gaming. The HUAWEI FullView Display seamlessly blends with rounded edges, making the device comfortable to hold.
Inspired by Light and Technology, a Stunning Device Designed for Every Photography Fan
The HUAWEI P20 Series reflects the art of light, with camera features that enhance the smartphone photography experience. The HUAWEI P20 Pro features a Leica triple camera with the highest total pixel count on a smartphone available in the market – the camera configuration is comprised of a 40MP RGB sensor, a 20MP monochrome sensor and an 8MP sensor with telephoto lens. It also features a colour temperature sensor for better colour reproduction. With f/1.8, f/1.6 and f/2.4 wide aperture to capture crisp, clear details, the HUAWEI P20 Pro also includes a brand new Leica 3x telephoto (VARIO-SUMMILUX-H 1:1.6-2.4/27-80ASPH) lens for long-range photography of up to 5x Hybrid Zoom. The HUAWEI P20 Pro’s highly sensitive image sensor captures low light photos with up to ISO 102400.
The HUAWEI P20 builds on its predecessor’s foundation with a Leica dual camera featuring a 12MP lens with a pixel size as high as 1.55 μm, and a 20MP monochrome lens, enhancing the HUAWEI P20’s ability to capture photos in low-light settings.
The HUAWEI P20 Series devices support six-axis stabilisation and 960fps super slow motion, which is 4x higher than the standard 240fps and captures details that cannot be seen with the naked eye. With Ultra Snapshot mode, the devices can capture an image in as little as 0.3 seconds by just double clicking the down volume button, even from an off screen.
Master AI Photography Experience for Everyone, Everywhere
With the Kirin 970 processor, the HUAWEI P20 Series automatically identifies more than 500 scenarios in 19 categories and selects photography modes and camera settings to deliver incredible, professional-looking images – even for novice photographers. In addition, HUAWEI AIS steadies handheld night shots for incredible long exposure images without a tripod. Brand new to Huawei’s advanced camera system is 4D predictive focus. In this mode, the camera predicts moving objects and focuses on them with extreme efficiency to capture minute details of objects in motion. In addition, the HUAWEI P20 Series features AI-Assisted Composition, providing intelligent suggestions to frame group shots and landscapes.
The HUAWEI P20 and HUAWEI P20 Pro feature a 24MP selfie camera** with AI beautification and 3D portrait lighting – the result is beautiful selfies with healthy-looking skin tone adjustments, delicately outlined facial details and realistic 3D feature enhancements.
Additionally, the HUAWEI HiAI Ecosystem enhances a variety of app experiences. For instance, the HUAWEI P20 Series includes on-device Prisma processing, which supports real-time filter recommendations based on scene and object recognition – the calculation speed is three to four times that of the cloud version.
In partnership with Google, the HUAWEI P20 Series supports Google ARCore delivering advanced AR capabilities.
Collaboration with Porsche Design Delivers a New Level of Luxury and Technology
The PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS combines Porsche Design’s signature brand aesthetic with Huawei’s mobile engineering expertise setting a new standard in luxury smartphones. The PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS features a Leica triple camera with the highest total pixel count on a smartphone available in the market – the camera configuration is comprised of a 40MP RGB sensor, a 20MP monochrome sensor and an 8MP sensor with telephoto lens. This is the world’s first smartphone equipped with microcapsule PCM – an aerospace cooling technology for maintaining a safe temperature. In addition, the PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS features an innovative in-screen fingerprint sensor which allows consumers to wake up the device by floating their finger above the display, while touching the sensor to unlock the device is lightning fast. The back fingerprint sensor can also be used to unlock the device or to access a second, secure space. The 6-inch OLED 2K curved screen PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS is available in Black, and for the first time, in an eye-catching Red***.
Introduced on the HUAWEI Mate 10 Series, the HUAWEI P20 Series and PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS feature TÜV Safety Certified HUAWEI SuperCharge. Both the HUAWEI P20 Pro and PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS have a 4,000 mAh battery – the HUAWEI P20 features a 3,400 mAh battery – with AI-powered Battery Management. The PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS is the first Huawei smartphone to enable quick wireless charging.
– ENDS –
Pricing and Availability
The HUAWEI P20 Series and PORSCHE DESIGN HUAWEI Mate RS are available to buy in the UK in April, and to pre-order from today, from retailers including Carphone Warehouse and EE. Pricing varies between retailers.
The new HUAWEI P20 Series devices are compatible with two new audio accessories: HUAWEI FreeBuds and HUAWEI Active Noise Cancelling Earphones.
 Highest overall DxOMark scores in the mobile camera category – HUAWEI P20 Pro: 109; HUAWEI P20: 102.