Huawei P20 Pro Review
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Attention Windows users, the all-in-one photo editor Luminar 2018 is out now and available for just $59/£53 for new users, with big discounts for upgrading users. We rated Luminar as "Highly Recommended". Visit the Luminar web site to try it for free.
Huawei has very lofty ambitions, and considering it has to take on the behemoths that are Samsung and Apple (as well as that other little known company, Google), it has to pull out all the stops when it comes to the camera/s provided.
The company remains relatively little known in Europe, while in the US, there has been questions over security and privacy. For this reason, we have an extremely high-powered device, with an outstanding camera at a reasonable price.
Getting Leica involved is also a smart move, as well as benefiting from the camera manufacturer’s expertise, it also reassures buyers that you’re getting something of real quality here. If you’re a photographer, you may not have heard of Huawei, but you almost certainly will have heard of Leica.
The world’s first triple-camera phone might sounds like a marketing gimmick, and to a certain extent, it probably is. The good news however is that the camera also really delivers, with well-saturated, well-exposed and well-detailed images. The 3x zoom camera is slightly less impressive, but it remains quite novel to have “proper” zoom in a camera phone at all - so that’s forgivable.
Design wise, the P20 Pro is very sleek and stylish. As is often the way with these phones though, you’ll probably want to hide away its beauty by investing in a case to protect it from scuffs and scapes, as well as the fact that the super sleek design sees it prone to falling from soft furnishings. We probably prefer the rear fingerprint sensor of the Mate 10, but that may be a matter of personal taste.
Battery life is fantastically impressive too - it’s all well and good having the best cameraphone about, but if it runs out of juice before you get to chance to use it, then you’re pretty much stuck. Here, we’ve got something that you can rely on to last at least a full day, but more likely even longer depending on your usage habits.
Overall, the Huawei P20 Pro is without doubt the best smartphone you can buy at the moment if your primary concern is photographic capability. It’s also just as good, if not better, than most “standard” compact cameras too - adding another nail in the coffin of the point-and-shoot market. We haven’t really explored using the phone as, well, a phone in this piece, but if you’re familiar with the Android system, you’ll be at home here - it generally runs extremely quickly and reactively.
A couple of small niggles are having to switch raw format shooting on and off if you want to use the zoom lens, or not being able to shoot in raw while using the monochrome mode. But these are relatively minor compared to what else the device offers.
Now, it only remains to be seen how Samsung, Apple and Google will react to the P20 Pro’s camera prowess.
|Ratings (out of 5)|
|Value for money||4|