Back in 2019, I was given the opportunity to travel to Munich, Germany to attend the global launch of the HUAWEI Mate30 Pro.
It was the Chinese smartphone giant’s first device to launch with no Google services. I was a little skeptical of its usability back then, but it more than made up for it with its extensive list of features.
It’s 2020, and HUAWEI has released its latest device in the Mate series, the Mate40 Pro. After spending roughly two weeks with the phone, here’s what I think about it.
The phone’s design is super distinctive and doesn’t feel cheap in the hands.
At first glance, the phone’s display looks like any other smartphone, albeit with a notch for the front-facing cameras. But it’s when you turn the phone around and take a look at the back casing, it just screams luxury. Especially with the main camera cluster’s ‘halo’ design.
Like its predecessor, the Mate40 Pro features a waterfall display, with steep curves accompanying the edges of the screen. This can be both a deal breaker and a huge selling point. It really just depends on your preferences. But in terms of aesthetics alone, that waterfall makes the screen look much bigger than it is, at 6.76 inches.
We also see the return of the red power button, which I found to be a truly unique trait of the Mate30 Pro that came before it. Despite the bezels of the Mate40 Pro being extremely thin, it doesn’t feel fragile. In fact, with my small hands, I felt safe holding it without a case on.
It’s got power to boot.
At the heart of the Mate40 Pro is the company’s latest Kirin 9000 chipset, which is built on a 5nm architecture, making it an incredibly potent processor. Accompanying this boost in power is 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage, making for a perfect daily driver, regardless of the day’s demands.
When swiping around on the 90Hz display, everything just feels super smooth and effortlessly fluid. It gives the illusion that the phone is a lot faster than it actually is. Especially for someone like me, who’s still stuck in the dark ages of 60Hz refresh rates.
Plus, the Kirin 9000 chipset allows me to game at ease. Slight disclaimer though: I’m not much of a mobile gamer, or a gamer in general at that. But I thoroughly enjoyed playing Asphalt 9. Not once did I experience any sluggishness. I can safely say that this phone will definitely please all you gamers out there.
Battery has always been a strength of the Mate series, and the Mate40 Pro is no different.
At 4,400 mAh, it’s actually slightly smaller than its predecessor’s. But thanks to efficient power consumption afforded by the Kirin 9000, I could easily get through an entire day with just a single charge. And if I’m being really honest, I could still continue using the phone the next morning for a little bit before charging it.
Speaking of charging, it’s a crime how the majority of other smartphone makers don’t give us super fast charging speeds. Included with the HUAWEI Mate40 Pro is a 66W SuperCharge power brick. It allows you to charge the phone from zero to 100 percent in less than an hour. In this effect, charging is no longer a chore.
If you prefer wireless charging, the Mate40 Pro can charge at speeds up to 50W, provided you have a compatible wireless charger.
When it comes to mobile photography, the Mate40 Pro has it in the bag.
The primary camera setup in the rear comprises of a 50-megapixel main camera with optical image stabilization (OIS), a 20-megapixel ultra-wide camera, a 12-megapixel 5x periscope zoom lens, and a laser sensor for fast and accurate autofocus.
When it comes to the casual user, they’ll be more than happy with the phone’s camera array. But I feel even the enthusiasts will get a kick out of what the Mate40 Pro’s camera can deliver.
From vibrant daytime shots to incredibly detailed night shots, the Mate40 Pro is no slouch when it comes to photographer performance. The periscope zoom allows me to get a lot closer to my subjects than I’d really ever need to. Stalkers, please stay away. However, I can see a good use for this lens for nature photographers, or for people who generally need to stay really far away from their subjects.
But HUAWEI has always been praised for their stellar camera quality, despite the brand’s other shortcomings. We’ll discuss this in the next point.
We need to address the elephant in the room. No, the Mate40 Pro doesn’t get to enjoy Google services, but there are some workarounds.
You don’t need me to tell you about the U.S. trade ban that has prevented HUAWEI’s access to the Google Play store. So, recommending any new HUAWEI smartphone can be extremely difficult, especially to people who rely on the apps that can only be found on the Play Store.
But there are workarounds for various popular apps. For instance, I could still get Instagram, Facebook, and WhatsApp on the Mate40 Pro. I just needed to side-load them through HUAWEI’s native web browser. In fact, I could even get Netflix and take advantage of the phone’s beautiful display.
Of course, when it came to YouTube and Gmail, I was less successful.. kind of. You can still technically access the aforementioned by going to their mobile sites. And with Gmail in particular, all I needed to do was link it to HUAWEI’s proprietary email client.
If my memory serves me correctly, I couldn’t find any way to side-load Slack, so that was a bit of a bummer, especially since all my work talk happens there.
The Mate40 Pro is almost the perfect smartphone. And I wish I could recommend it to more people.
In terms of hardware, it hits a straight bullseye. It’s hard to recommend an Android device with no access to Google services, especially in Southeast Asia. But if you can part with dedicated apps for things like Gmail and YouTube, then more power to you. In fact, if you’re willing to make those compromises, the Mate40 Pro is perfect.
ที่มา : Mashable