• Full Review
  • Specifications

Full Review

The Huawei P30 Pro is Huawei’s true flagship, beating the already-impressive Huawei P30 in a number of ways.

Of course, it’s also therefore more expensive, and has to more directly compete with the likes of the Galaxy S10 Plus and iPhone XS Max.

That makes for some tough competition, so does this four-lens phone do enough to stand out from the crowd? Or are you better off spending your money elsewhere? Read on to find out.

Screen

The Huawei P30 Pro has a 6.47-inch 1080 x 2340 OLED screen with a pixel density of 398 pixels per inch. So it’s very big, rivalling the largest flagships around, though while at Full HD+ it’s quite sharp it’s no match on that front for QHD+ rivals like the Samsung Galaxy S10.

Still, it’s a great screen overall, with its use of OLED ensuring that colours are bright and vibrant, and the contrast is great. It’s curved too giving it a high-end look, and helped by the almost complete lack of bezels (there’s just a slim one at the bottom and a small notch at the top).

And the Huawei P30 Pro’s screen supports HDR10. This isn’t surprising on a flagship but is useful, as it means the phone can properly display HDR videos.

Design

Huawei P30 Pro Colours

The design here is stylish, with the aforementioned curved, almost bezel-free screen on the front, while the sides are metal, and the back is clad in glass.

It’s a fairly conventional if high-end design, that is, until you get to the colours, as you can optionally get the Huawei P30 Pro in shades that shift from one end of the phone to the other, to striking effect. That too isn’t completely new – the Huawei P20 range and others have a similar trick, but the novelty hasn’t yet worn off.

Huawei P30 Pro Waterproof

The Huawei P30 Pro is also IP68 certified, meaning it’s dust resistant as well as water resistant to depths of 1.5 metres for 30 minutes. Lots of flagships match that, but it’s a nice feature for peace of mind, and one that the standard Huawei P30 doesn’t have.

Power

There’s an octa-core Kirin 980 chipset powering the P30 Pro. This is made by Huawei and has two cores running at 2.6GHz, two at 1.92GHz and four at 1.8GHz. It’s one of the most powerful smartphone chips around, helped by the fact that it’s made on a tiny 7nm process, making it more efficient.

It’s perhaps not quite a match for the Snapdragon 855 or Apple’s A12 Bionic chipset, but it comes very close and you’re unlikely to notice the difference in performance in practice, especially as you also get 8GB of RAM here. Combined that ensures the Huawei P30 Pro’s performance is slick and smooth pretty much whatever you’re using it for.

Camera

Huawei P30 Pro Camera

The Huawei P30 Pro’s cameras manage to stand out even amongst other flagships, because unlike the vast majority of phones, this has four lenses on the back.

That makes it enormously versatile, as it can call upon a 40MP f/1.6 main camera, a 20MP f/2.2 ultra-wide one, an 8MP f/3.4 telephoto one offering 5x optical zoom, and a ToF (Time of Flight) camera for sensing depth.

In fact, while the telephoto camera ‘only’ offers 5x optical zoom, it can manage up to 10x near lossless hybrid zoom and even a 50x ‘Super Zoom’, so you can get in way closer to subjects than with most phones.

As for that main 40MP sensor, it’s a ‘SuperSpectrum’ one, which is Huawei’s fancy way of saying it has red, yellow and blue pixels as opposed to red, green and blue ones, which supposedly means it can capture up to 40% more light. And that’s believable, as its low-light shooting skills are remarkable.

The ToF camera meanwhile is capable of great bokeh effects, AI-powered HDR+ makes scenes more striking than ever, and there’s a 32MP camera on the front, which trumps most selfie snappers. At the time of writing this is the best smartphone camera around in our opinion and the single biggest reason to buy the P30 Pro – though there are plenty of other good reasons too.

Features

Like many modern flagships the Huawei P30 Pro has an in-screen fingerprint scanner, giving you a slick way to secure the phone, but it also has an in-screen speaker. This is designed to be used for phone calls and provides an “increased hearing area”. It works fine but feels like a bit of a gimmick, and means there’s only one normal speaker used for music. That’s especially a shame as there’s no 3.5mm headphone port here, so audio potential is slightly limited.

Battery life, memory and connectivity

There’s a huge 4,200mAh battery keeping the Huawei P30 Pro running. That’s one of the biggest batteries you’ll find in a mainstream handset and it lasts a long time, as you’d expect. Not only will you easily get a day of life from this phone, but two days is entirely possible if you’re frugal with your use.

Huawei P30 Pro Wireless Charging

The phone also supports fast charging, wireless charging, and even reverse wireless charging, so you can use it as a charging pad for other devices.

There’s also plenty of storage, with up to 512GB built-in, plus room for expansion if you invest in a nano memory card.

Connectivity options meanwhile include 4G, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC (allowing for contactless payments) and even an infrared blaster, so you can use the phone as a remote for supported devices, such as a TV.

Verdict

The Huawei P30 Pro is a fantastic phone, but it kind of needs to be given that it costs £899 SIM-free at the time of writing. Its camera is the real standout feature, but most other aspects of the phone are also good or great, making this a viable alternative to the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus or iPhone XS Max.

Whether it’s the best choice depends on what you most value from your phone, as it can’t quite match some handsets when it comes to things like resolution and power, but it comes very close and beats them all at photography.

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Specifications

Specifications

  • Dimensions (mm): 158 x 73.4 x 8.4
  • Weight (g): 192
  • Battery capacity (mAh): 4200
  • Colours: Aurora, Amber Sunrise, Breathing Crystal, Black
  • Screen size (inches): 6.47
  • Resolution: 1080 x 2340
  • Pixels per inch (PPI): 398
  • Processor: Octa-core
  • Processor make: Kirin 980
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Internal storage: 128GB/256GB/512GB
  • Expandable storage up to: 256GB
  • Camera: 40MP, 16MP, 8MP and ToF (32MP front-facing)
  • Operating System: Android 9

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