The Huawei Mate 30 Pro has been announced in Munich. The phone arrives in the second half of a tumultuous year for the Chinese tech giant, but that hasn’t stopped Huawei from loading it up with the most cutting edge tech we’ve seen on a handset to date.
It really is all about imaging here, with the camera surround adopting what Huawei’s calling ‘Halo design’. It’s round, reminiscent of the Lumia 2010, as too are the flat tops and bottoms of the phone. According to Huawei, the Mate 30 series’ design cues are inspired by Leica cameras (opens in new tab) and their flat elements with curved sides.
There’s no volume button on the Mate 30 Pro, just double tap the side of the phone and slide up or down to change it. Also interesting, tapping the frame of the phone can act as a shutter release, though we’re looking forward to seeing how this fares when using gloves.
With IP68 water and dust resistance, the Huawei Mate 30 Pro is protected from the elements, but it’s also a sleek device, with a two gradient finish. Matte at the bottom, it repels fingerprints, and as you travel towards the top of the phone, the Mate 30 Pro’s back gets glossy. As for colors, it can be picked up in Space Silver, Cosmic Purple, Emerald Green and two vegan leather options too - very progressive
Flex OLED Screen
Looking at the screen, the first thing you notice is how edge-to-edge it is, and the fact the notch has returned, complete with gesture sensors inside. Huawei has coined the Mate 30 Pro’s screen a ‘Horizon display’, as it wraps around the side of the phone to almost 90 degrees, giving an infinity pool impression - but Samsung’s already nabbed that term.
The Mate 30 Pro’s Horizon display measures 6.53 inches and is a Flex OLED panel with a resolution of 2400 x 1176. With a newly introduced Cinematic Color system and DCI-P3 HDR, it’s a display to be reckoned with, on paper at least.
With 27W wireless charging, the Mate 30 Pro will charge faster than an iPhone 11 Pro Max plugged in to a wall charger, and with a 4500mAh battery, it’s a leader when compared to other slender flagships. At 198g vs the iPhone 11 Pro Max’s 226g, it's also a manageable weight too.
Huawei Mate 30 Pro camera specs
Huawei’s ‘SuperSensing camera array’ includes four sensors. For photos, it features an ultra-wide super-sampled 16MP camera, which doubles up as 40MP ultrawide cinema camera, an 8MP telephoto camera with an 80mm equivalent focal length and the phone also has a SuperSensing 40MP primary wide camera.
The Mate 30 Pro also introduces Sony Xperia 1-esque cinema video features, only in the P30 Pro, everything’s ramped up to 11. Huawei is calling its device the world’s first 4K 60fps 40MP cinema camera, with an industry-high ISO of 409600, combined with dual AIS+OIS for stabilized footage. Huawei showed off a sky diving video with a diver wearing the Mate 30 Pro on their helmet, and while there was some shake, it was still impressive.
Want more silly numbers? The Mate 30 Pro can capture slow-motion video at 7680 fps, with Huawei showing off a great demo video in which a hummingbird which flaps its wings 80 times a second was slowed down to a relaxed hover beautifully.
Huawei isn’t just making a killer camera and calling it a day, the company has also joined forces with DJI, enabling instant pairing with the Osmo Mobile 3 (opens in new tab), and bypassing the need for DJI’s proprietary apps, which don’t engage the phone’s zoom or ultrawide cameras. Profoto has also joined the party, with the C1 and C1 Plus (opens in new tab)creating the world’s first studio photo kit designed for smartphones.
The elephant in the room?
The Huawei Mate 30 Pro runs Android 10 with Huawei’s EMUI 10 over the top, but that’s about all we were told. Huawei clearly avoided the Google question, though we already know the phone won’t be launching with the Google Play Store.
Huawei did load the phone up with plenty of smart features that could be compensating for the glaring omission. With AI eye tracking, the phone will rotate depending on how you’re looking at it, so you’ll never have to lock your phone’s auto-rotate again. The Mate 30 Pro also ensures your notifications are seen by your eyes only, with the notch’s clever sensors identifying prying eyes, and hiding notification details until they look away.
Pricing and availability
Huawei gave no indication as to when the Mate 30-series would launch anywhere in the world.... so it is far from certain that you will actually be able to buy these possible best camera phone (opens in new tab) contenders. However, it did give pricing in Euros for the handsets...
The price for the Huawei Mate 30 Pro will be €1099. The Huawei Mate 30 will cost €799, whilst a 5G version of the Mate 30 Pro is tagged at €1199.
• The best add-on lenses for iPhone and Android phones (opens in new tab)
• Best selfie sticks for your smartphone (opens in new tab)
• The best iPhone tripods (opens in new tab)
• The best gimbals for your iPhone, GoPro and camera (opens in new tab)
• The best phone cases to protect your camera phone (opens in new tab)
• The best iPhone for photography (opens in new tab)
• The best camera phones in 2019 (opens in new tab)