Whenever there is a new phone launch I tend to reserve my excitement until I have given a phone a good spin. I mean, what more could a new phone launch offer? I recently got to take the Huawei P20 for a test. My expectations were sky high and to be fair my first impressions left me full of excitement… but… with some subtle disappointments.
IT’S ALL ABOUT THE LOOKS
Looks wise you can’t ask for better, the Huawei P20 has been designed to turn heads. It is a beautiful blend of glass and metal giving it a premium look and feel. Matched with beautiful curves and Huawei’s FullView 5.8-inch display, this is one sexy phone.
What’s more is the customisable “notch”. This looks set to become a new industry standard and offers a bigger screen size but there are those who prefer a more conventional square display with clean lines. Huawei have made the notch customisable – giving users the option to keep the notch or change to a more conventional screen.
Security wise, the fingerprint sensor is found on the front of the device and doubles up as a mini trackpad. I made use of the facial recognition which impressed. Not only did it recognise my face in darker settings but it was also fast and could not be fooled (I tried). The P20 comes with a splash proof rating which is enough to cover you in the rain but be sure to keep away from the pool or the shower.
The exclusion of a headphone jack and lack of a memory card slot disappointed me a tad, BUT, you do get a set of USB-C headphones and a spare audio adapter (3,5mm to USB-C) included in the box. The P20 also comes with 128GB on-board memory so you are unlikely to run low on space. If you do, it is probably time to start backing up your info to the cloud. With free services like DropBox, Google Drive or Microsoft OneDrive, aren’t flash drives a little old school anyway?
Wireless charging also doesn’t feature on the new P20 range. Huawei have explained that their devices charge so fast, wireless would just not be able to keep up. It would simply detract from a key feature – it’s fast charging – and I must say this is possibly the fastest charging phone I have ever used.
FLASH THOSE PEARLY WHITES
So, as we all know the camera is currently the biggest battle ground in the mobile phone sphere with all big brands dueling it out to be the best. In the P20, Huawei have pretty much developed a Rockstar camera which happens to have a cellphone attached!
With a dual 12MP + 20MP camera shooter powered with Leica optics, the Huawei P20 is ranked as the number 2 performing cellphone camera by DXOMARK – only just beaten by… take a guess… the Huawei P20 Pro. DXOMARK is an industry standard for image quality benchmarks. In other words, they know their stuff!
Huawei has packed AI tech into its camera making it not only a powerful but intuitive and easy to use. Huawei’s camera AI takes all the guess work out of how, where and what you are shooting. It automatically adjusts its Leica lenses and aperture settings creating amazing pictures – whether you are shooting portraits or landscapes and in any lighting environment. The Huawei will make even the most amateur picture takers’ photo’s look like they were taken by a professional.
Selfie wise I believe this is the best on the market. At 24MP the camera also features 3D Portrait lighting mode – giving you the best possible selfie 100% of the time. I was very dedicated in my testing and this did not disappointed.
Popping a peek under the hood you get a powerful octa-core processor, 4GB RAM, coupled with Huawei’s very own Kirin chipset. By utilizing their own technology Huawei provides a better, seamless experience across its components and functions. The battery lasted a day and a half but even so the lightning fast charging is so efficient that even if you do run low you’ll be up and running in no time.
Personally, the elegant design coupled with a world class camera gets me excited. Using the P20 has left me with little doubt that it is one of the best smartphones on the market. Huawei is turning the battle of the brands into a true race and, in my opinion, they are leading the pack.
Reviewed By: Lesa J
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