A few years ago, the appearance of a new Huawei device was not a big deal, but now it is different. After the Chinese smartphone maker surprised friend and foe with the very cleverly put together P20 Pro and his fantastic cameras, the expectations were high for the latest flagship: The Mate 20 and the Pro variant of it. The good news: it seems that Huawei not only puts the competition on fire but even surpasses them with these new devices.
There is a difference between the two smartphones. The Mate 20 Pro is firstly smaller (!) Than the regular Mate 20 with a screen size of 6.39 inches. That is the same size as the recently released Note 9, so you are still in the phablet category. The regular version is even 6.53 inches and that is really serious. There is now a standard ‘notch’ in the screen with space for the selfie camera and 3D depth sensor for face recognition. Of course, the screen has a high resolution and large pixel density so that everything looks crisp, but the biggest secret is behind the screen. This is because a fingerprint sensor is hidden that allows you to unlock the smartphone simply by placing a finger somewhere on the screen. Which, in combination with facial recognition, ensures that no one opens your phone without you.
The fastest phone today
The Mate 20 is a powerhouse, made possible by the Kirin 980 chip in it. That is an extremely powerful and brand new processor that has the choice of eight ‘cores’ that can run apps and other processes in different combinations. That sounds complicated, but see it like this: the Mate 20 Pro can turn everything you expect from a modern smartphone with two fingers in the nose, including complex 3D games and photo and video editing.
The most special feature of the 980, however, is the double Neural Processing Unit (NPU) that allows the use of AI or artificial intelligence on your phone. Because those NPUs can run many AI processes locally on the telephone, there is no need to connect all the time to a central server somewhere. This makes the Mate 20 Pro not only used faster, it also ensures a longer battery life because the AI smartly switches between the processors and ensures that peak moments cannot occur. It also helps enormously with another aspect that has become important for Huawei devices: making photos and videos.
Photo and video in a sleek design
Huawei had the attention of photographers and videomakers after the fantastic pictures that were possible on their previous P20 and that trend continues with the Mate 20. With the Leica Triple Camera and the Mate 20 can handle everything. From macro photography (objects up to 2.5 centimeters from the lens come into sharp focus) to grand landscapes with the wide-angle lens of Leica, the Mate 20 can handle anything. Huawei says the range of the camera (s) is comparable to a 16mm full frame lens on a regular camera. That is quite something. Not only can these cameras do everything, but they also look good.
The symmetrical design of the cameras and flash in a tight square on the back of the phone are beautiful, but the whole device looks too crazy. Our personal favorite Midnight Blue even has a special texture on the back that gives you more grip when you’re taking pictures and so that’s the color to choose if you’re planning to make lots of photos and videos. Speaking of videos: the Kirin 980 is so powerful that you can now even apply live video editing to your recordings with all sorts of filters and effects and because everything in 21: 9 ratio is recorded you also immediately gets a very cinematic effect on your videos. So all looks very good.
Fast charging, long life
OK, so the Mate 20 (Pro) has processor power that has never been seen, makes awesome pictures and videos and looks good out with that mega-screen. Then the battery will be empty within a few hours, surely? Nothing of that, because the 4200 mAh battery not only has a lot of capacity, you also have to recharge it. Perhaps that OnePlus owners are familiar with this, but Huawei is now also allowing you to load your Mate 20 as full with their new 40 Watt Supercharge system within half an hour.
It gets even better with the Mate 20 Pro : you can use it to charge accessories such as wireless earphones and even other smartphones (!) By putting them on your phone. That logically also means that the Pro version itself can be charged wirelessly, albeit a bit slower than with the Supercharge via a cable. Apart from that, the AI support of the Kirin 980 also ensures that you waste as little energy as possible in your Mate 20, so that – even if you are busy with heavy games or video editing – you end up at the end of the day anyway.
The Mate 20 is primarily a flexible device in the sense that you can do everything with it, depending on where your priorities lie. So both devices also have the possibility to place a second sim, but if you do not use it you can use that sim slot to expand your storage.
Huawei Watch GT goes two weeks on a battery
At the launch of the Mate 20, Huawei CEO Richard Yu presented the Huawei Watch GT, a smartwatch that is slightly different tackles. Although the watch has an AMOLED touchscreen with a 454×454 resolution, it can easily last two weeks with average use. That is according to the asterisk (because that goes with that kind of statements) a scenario in which you wear the smartwatch 24 hours a day, GPS and sleep monitoring on, message notification is activated and you watch 200 times a day on the watch.
You can deduce from that (if the photos do not make it clear to you) that this is not a smartwatch à la Apple Watch, but a watch that mainly tells you what time it is and shows other reports in an abstract way. There are two variants of the watch: the Sport and the Classic, depending on which style you like to wear.
Good to know is that you get the Huawei Watch GT at Media Markt for free when you purchase a Level 20 or Mate 20 Pro .
Where can I pre-order?
If after this whole story you are enthusiastic about the Mate 20 and the Mate 20 Pro is that very understandable. The big question is of course always: what does it cost and how and when do I get it? The Mate 20 is going to cost 800 euros and, like the Pro version, comes out on 2 November. For the Pro you have to pay 200 euros extra, which really puts the device in the premium category. That is not surprising, of course, because what Huawei puts here is the best phone of the moment.
Huawei makes it a lot easier to purchase the Pro, at the Media Market you get not only a Wireless Charger gift, but also the Watch GT for free! That means you get 260 euros for stuff for a phone that costs only 200 euros more than the regular version. It must be said that wireless charging is really fantastic and you will never want to be different when you are used to it. Anyway, it is an offer that appeals and if the device in question sets the new standard for smartphones, it immediately sounds a lot better.
Do you already know about which device you want to go? Pre-ordering can now be done right away via Media Markt:
Click here to order the Huawei Mate 20.
Or here for the Huawei Mate 20 Pro .
The full specs of the Mate 20
- Display: 6.39 “OLED with 19.5: 9 aspect ratio
- Resolution: QHD + (3120 x 1440 pixels) with 538ppi  Processor: Huawei Kirin 980 with Dual NPU (AI-chip)
- Frequency: 2 x 2.6GHz, 2 x 1.92GHz, 4 x 1.8GHz
- Operating System: Android ™ 9.0, EMUI 9.0
- Memory: 6GB RAM, 128GB Flash, expandable with a NM card
- Rear camera: Leica Triple Camera: 40MP f1.8 Wide Angle + 20MP f2.2 Ultra Wide Angle + 8MP f2.4 Tele, autofocus
- Camera front : 24MP, f2.0, 3D Depth Sensing Camera Interaction
- Fingerprint scanner
- Battery capacity: 4200mAh
- Standby time: up to 500+ hours (2G), 555 hours (3G), 499 hours (4G) *
- Speech time: up to 41.5 hours (2G), 30 hours (3G), 39 hours (4G) *
- SIM: Nano-SIM (4FF) + Nano-SIM (4FF) (second SIM card slot can be used as NM card slot)
- FDD frequency bands: B1 / B2 / B3 / B4 / B5 / B6 / B7 / B8 / B9 / B12 / B17 / B18 / B19 / B20 / B26 / B28 / B32
- TDD frequency bands: B34 / B38 / B39 / B40
- 3G frequency bands: B1 / B2 / B4 / B5 / B6 / B8 / B19
- WiFi: 802.11a / b / g / n / ac, 2.4G & 5G, WiFi Direct
- Bluetooth®: BT 5.0, BLE with aptX ™, aptX HD, LDAC HD and HWA audio support
- USB-C 3.1 (gene 1) connection
- USB functions: charging, media transfer protocol, OTG connections, audio, personal hotspot
- Weight: about 189 grams
* Standby and voice time depending on usage and network conditions.