For my very first Yes Crowd device review I was able to get my hands on the Huawei Mate20 Pro. It was also my first time using an Android device and has definitely got my questioning whether I should make the switch when my current phone plan is up. Enjoy!
Huawei’s newest flagship device, the Mate20 Pro, comes in a sleek, compact, black box. Unboxing this one felt just like Christmas morning.
Sliding the lid off I found the device (in the ‘Midnight Blue’ colour) sitting pretty right at the top in all its glory. Beneath the device, a Huawei charger SuperCharge (Max 40W), USB cable, earphones, adaptor, quick start guide, warranty card and eject tool. There was also a clear protection case which I was quick to put on (I have a bad habit of dropping my phone!).
Up until 16 January 2019, the device also comes with bonus Freebuds.
Set-up and design
I was immediately struck by the size of the screen. The long, streamlined design had a premium feel, and with no home button and curved glass edges, the device is all screen. Measuring 157.8 x 72.3 x 8.6 mm (L X W X H) with a 6.39-inch display, and weighing in at 189g, the device felt quite large and heavy in my hand and it wasn’t easy to reach the top of the screen with my thumb.
I currently use an iPhone 8, which measures much smaller (4.7-inch display and 148g), so the size and weight was an adjustment, but one I was more than happy to make… the huge screen, combined with HDR capabilities and quality speakers, meant viewing video content on the device was an immersive experience. The picture was sharp, and colours were rich and vibrant (and the whopping 4200mAh meant I was able to binge watch plenty of Netflix).
With some phones it can be difficult to see the screen in full sun, but that wasn’t the case with this one. Turning the brightness up to maximum, I could easily review my photos standing outside on a sunny day. Photos looked vibrant, and in my opinion, brighter and more glowy on the device’s screen than they did once uploaded to the computer.
The camera on this device is unreal. The Leica-made triple lens set up on the rear includes a 40MP wide-angle lens, 20MP ultra-wide-angle lens, and 8MP telephoto lens. The camera itself supports auto focus and comes with advanced dual tone flash. Plus, it boasts a number of shooting modes such as night, portrait, and pro mode, as well as filters, beautification functions and the ability to alter colour balance.
Portrait mode lets you take photos with beautification and bokeh effects – notice the soft, out-of-focus background, against the sharp, vibrant subject.
This look is generally achieved using a fast lens and wide aperture, however the camera on this phone is so intuitive it does it all for you. With the Master AI setting switched on, the camera automatically selects the best shooting mode based on your surroundings. It really made feel like a pro photographer and I was amazed by the stunningly detailed results I was able to produce.
There's also a ‘Pro’ camera mode where you’re able to adjust the ISO, shutter speed, exposure and more, for the ones who really know what they’re doing.
I was most impressed by the ‘Night’ camera feature. Every year I go around and look at the Christmas lights in my area but am never able to get any decent photos. Until now… Using the Night setting, the phone was able to perfectly capture the lights.
Standard vs. vivid colours
The long list of camera settings also meant I was able to capture beautiful shots that don’t require any filter work later on Instagram.
The 24 MP front camera is AMAZING for selfies – the picture quality is sharp and detailed.
The beautification functions in ‘Portrait’ mode allow you to smooth your skin for a flawless finish and even make your face appear thinner! For the below photos I set the ‘Smooth skin’ to level 5 out of 10, and the ‘Thinner face’ setting to 3 out of 5. The function certainly gave my skin a flawless finish, although a little whitewashed (in saying that, I am very pale so could just be me 😉). Putting the settings any higher than this and it produced a somewhat unrealistic, waxy appearance.
I’m generally not a fan of the panorama function on phone cameras as my hands shake too much and my photos turn out distorted, so I was pleasantly surprised by what I was able to produce.
The in-screen fingerprint reader was a real highlight for me. Although it took some time to set up (the phone needs to take an imprint of your finger), the feature works fast and consistently.
The device also comes with a facial recognition unlock function. I found this to be a bit hit and miss - it worked most of the time, but not as consistently as the fingerprint reader.
Charging and battery life
I was also impressed by Huawei’s 40W SuperCharge charger and the phone’s battery life. With the battery at 50%, I was able to reach full charge in just 30 minutes.
The camera made me feel like a pro.
The huge screen was perfect for watching videos.
The finger print scanner worked like a charm.
The device ran quickly on Android Pie 9.0. Apps opened quickly, and I was able to switch easily between them.
The handset was a little heavy and large in my hand, although this is such a minor complaint considering this meant watching video content was a great experience.
What do you think of the Huawei Mate20 Pro? Tell us in the comments below