Huawei Mate 30 Pro has Stunning Design and Hardware but no Google Apps


Following the long trail of rumors and speculations including the images, Huawei has finally unveiled its flagship Mate 30 series in Munich. In fact, we had seen some hands-on and unboxing videos as well that almost vanished the surprise factor Huawei have had for the launch.

The only surprise, with regard to a smartphone, was the no-announcement of Mate 30 Lite. Well, that actually is not so important as well. The company launched five variants of its flagship series — Mate 30, Mate 30 Pro, Mate 30 5G, Mate 30 Pro 5G, and Porsche Design Mate 30 RS.

Huawei Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro Features

The Mate 30 series undoubtedly packs with the real flagship features. The company’s latest AI-chip Kirin 990 is powering up the Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro. Huawei launched the two variants of the chip earlier this month — one with 4G/LTE modem and the other one with 5G modem. It’s the first chip from the company to include a built-in 5G modem. Hence, there are two separate 5G variants of Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro. The most premium Mate 30 RS comes only with 5G connectivity.

Huawei’s Mate 30 series with 5G connectivity has a special antenna design with 21 antennas in total — 14 out of which are for 5G.

The Mate 30 is slightly larger than Mate 30 Pro, with a 6.62-inch screen size, while the latter has a 6.53-inch screen. The Mate 30 Pro has ultra curved glass around the edges, while the Mate 30 features traditionally flat display.

Mate 30 Pro and Mate 30
Mate 30 Pro (Left) — Mate 30 (Right) | Image: Huawei

The three phones pack with different battery sizes as well. Mate 30 comes with a large 4,200mAh battery but the Mate 30 Pro features an even larger 4,500mAh battery. Mate 30 RS, the Porsche Design also features the same 4,500mAh battery.

All the phones and variants among the latest Mate 30 series support fast charging up to 40-watt via traditional wired connection. The new phones also support 27-watt wireless charging. Reverse wireless charging, as claimed, is now 3-times faster.

Huawei Mate 30 features a 24-megapixel front-facing camera while the Mate 30 Pro has a 32-megapixel front camera.

Mate 30 / Mate 30 Pro — The Halo Ring Camera

Now, of course, the most important factor of the new Mate 30 series is the improved camera system. Although each one of them comes with Leica optics, the cameras behind are quite different in Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro. With respect to the visualizations, Huawei proudly calls it a “Halo Ring Design” that makes up a circular camera module on the back.

Visually both the phones have similar cameras but they are quite different from within. First of all, the Mate 30 has a triple rear camera system with a fourth laser focus sensor to align the module with Mate 30 Pro which has a quad rear camera system.

The Mate 30 has a main 40-megapixel camera with a 27mm wide f/1.8 aperture lens, a secondary 16-megapixel sensor with an ultra-wide-angle 17mm f/2.2 lens, an 8-megapixel camera (optically stabilized) with 80mm telephoto f/2.4 aperture lens, and a “laser focus” sensor.

On the other hand, the Mate 30 Pro’s main 40-megapixel camera comes with a large f/1.6 aperture lens with an identical equivalent focal length of 27mm. Additionally, the main camera features optical stabilization (OIS). 8-megapixel telephoto camera is identical to what’s in the Mate 30. a 3D depth sensor is provided instead of the laser focus in Mate 30 Pro. But probably the first time, the ultra-wide-angle camera in Mate 30 Pro also has a 40-megapixel sensor and a large f/1.8 aperture lens. Huawei named it the “Ultra-Wide Cine” camera.

Porsche Design Mate 30 RS

The Porsche Design Huawei Mate 30 RS avoids the circular ring and the same camera setup is placed inside the vertical glass stripe

Largest Image Sensor Among Recent Flagships

Most important thing is that this time, Huawei has put in the physically larger camera sensors. The main 40-megapixel camera has a 1/1.7″ type sensor which is really larger than the 1/2.55″ type sensor in the latest Galaxy Note 10+ and iPhone 11 Pro Max. That means this sensor should perform significantly better in low-light environments.

Mate 30 Pro Cine Camera Sensor Size

Ultra-Wide Cine Camera

The main sensor is more traditionally 4:3 in both Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro. However, the sensor inside the Ultra-Wide Cine camera in Mate 30 Pro is even larger with 1/1.54″ type. That has finally reached around the second-largest mobile camera sensor after five years of the release of Lumia 1020. Not sure how long it would take to reach 1/1.2″ type sensor of Nokia’s 808 Pure View.

Unlike the lot of ultra-wide-angle cameras around in the recent phones, Huawei has gone really further ahead by making it more usable than just a snapper. The one in Mate 30 Pro has a cinema friendly aspect ratio of 3:2 for video recordings, yet named “Ultra-Wide Cine” camera. Thanks to the largest image sensor onboard, this is claimed to record stunningly in low-light situations.

The new Mate 30 Pro can record in up to 4K 60 fps, or record 720p slow-motion videos mind-blowing 7680 frames per second. Huawei proudly showed off the ultra slow-motion footage of a hummingbird flying around a flower, while we could see its wings really well.

The Operating System and Software

The Chinese smartphone maker appreciably did well, first by announcing its flagship phone in time when it seemed really difficult considering the company’s trade restrictions with US companies. The huge blow was the software that we already knew Huawei’s next phones won’t come with Google Apps. But what we saw today, was a really confident smartphone maker on stage, announcing its flagship series with some stunning hardware and probably the most eye-catching design.

Without any Google Apps, Huawei’s new phones still run Android operating — the open-source version, under the hood. The EMUI 10 on top also has notably impressive features. Huawei knows it really well that its relationship with the U.S companies depends on the latter’s government. Hence, to replace Google apps and services, Huawei has announced its own Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) core. The company claimed that it’s already integrated with over 45,000 apps.

Huawei Mobile Services HMS

Huawei has planned to invest $1 billion in its software ecosystem that will be split for, one; the development fund, two; user growth fund, and three; marketing fund.

Due to the Mate 30 Pro’s almost fully curved display around the edges, Huawei had to remove the physical volume keys. Instead the company has featured a new touch-sensitive slider that works on both sides of the edges. We have seen such a solution from Vivo in its concept devices before but more recently in Vivo NEX 3.

Huawei has claimed a lot more features like this but we can’t tell before reviewing the new Mate 30 series. So let’s wait and see how the software performs against Google’s licensed Android platform, we can’t guarantee that right now.

Pricing and Availability

The Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro are available in six colors, including two vegan leather options — green and orange. Other colors include silver, green, purple, and black.

The Huawei Mate 30 RS, the Porsche Design edition, uses a genuine leather finish on the back with a vertical glass stripe in the middle. Mate 30 RS will be available in red and black.

  • Huawei Mate 30: 8GB+128GB — EUR 799 (~$880 or PKR ~137,500/-)
  • Huawei Mate 30 Pro:
    • 4G/LTE — 8GB+256GB — EUR 1099 (~$1210 or PKR ~189,000/-)
    • 5G — 8GB+256GB — EUR 1199 (~$1320 or PKR ~206,000/-)
  • Porsche Design Huawei Mate 30 RS:
    • 5G — 12GB+512GB — EUR 2095 (~$2307 or PKR ~360,000/-)
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