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  • Liling Tan

Huawei Mate 30 & Mate 30 Pro – Quite An Impact, In More Ways Than One

Updated: Aug 19, 2021

The Huawei Mate 30 series was launched in Munich, Germany where amidst the turmoil and chaos, they just went ahead and launched their new flagship, the Mate 30 and the Mate 30 Pro.

The first thing you’ll notice on the Mate 30 Pro is the new take on the 6.53-inch OLED display. Yes, the notch is still there, nothing special about that, but notice the edges. Huawei calls it Horizon Display, and basically it’s that curved glass, waterfall kind of design which many other manufacturers are also going for nowadays. But the one on the Mate 30 Pro, is taking this to the literal term.

The display curves down at an almost 90 degree angle, 88 to be exact, allowing for what they claim to be an unparalleled immersive experience like no other. Now, I’m not too sure about that, I for one, still prefer a flat display, so the Mate 30 is probably more up my alley, but with this design aesthetic, you might also be wondering where are the volume buttons?

Well, it’s now touch-based.

You can actually just tap the side of the device, and the volume control will appear. You can then use your finger or thumb to just slide across the length of the display, to change the volume. First impressions? I think it’s actually pretty neat, but only time will tell whether this is something you would appreciate.

Oh, and similar to the P30 Pro, the screen vibrates to create sound. But unlike the P30 Pro, which does it mainly for calls, the ones on the Mate 30 Pro are now powerful enough to act as a speaker. So, you have slightly more stereo separation, when it works in conjunction with the bottom firing speakers.

Speaking of sound, well, the headphone jack is gone on the Mate 30 Pro, but the regular Mate 30 retains it.

3D Face Unlock is also back, but mainly only on the Mate 30 Pro, while both models will also feature an In-Screen Fingerprint reader.

Both phones will be powered by the Kirin 990 chipset, 8GB of RAM, and 128GB for the Mate 30 while 256GB of storage is standard for the Mate 30 Pro. Storage is still expandable, but only with the use of the NanoMemory Card from Huawei.

Now we talk a little about battery. The Mate 30 comes equipped with a 4,200mAh battery while the Mate 30 Pro, comes in with 4,500mAh. Both now, however supports the full 40W Huawei Supercharge, which lets you charge to 70% within half an hour, and wireless charging has improved too, now at 27W.

So far, we’ve not been able to test the phone out, but judging from the specs and the previous model, you should get through a day, no problem at all.

Up top, you get a 24 megapixel front camera on the Mate 30, while the Mate 30 Pro gets 32 megapixels.

Turning around to the back, you’ll see the new design aesthetic unique to the Mate 30 series, a Halo ring, which houses the trademark cameras of Huawei. To be frank, it actually kind of reminds me of the designs implemented by Nokia on their Lumia smartphones.

The Mate 30 features a Triple Camera system, while the Mate 30 Pro features a Quad Camera system, with the latter having the 3D depth sensing camera as the fourth camera.

Both models get a 40MP main camera, which like the P30 Pro, has a Red, Yellow, Yellow, Blue color filter array that’s supposed to help with low light performance, up to a crazy 409600 ISO and has optical image stabilization.

Both have the same 8MP telephoto lens, capable of 3X optical, 5X hybrid and 30X digital zoom.

And as I’ve mentioned, only the Mate 30 Pro has that 3D depth sensing camera, mainly for better and more realistic portrait shots.

But the key difference between the two models is the ultra wide angle camera, and this is where the Pro model gets interesting.

Huawei calls it the Cine Camera, and on the Pro, like the main camera, is at a whopping 40MP. The sensor size is also much larger, coming in at 1/1.54-inch, and is capable of 51200 ISO in video.

But the crazy thing is the slow motion video, which Huawei says goes up to 7680 frames per second. Now, that’s unheard of in a smartphone and I’ve only tried it for a brief moment. I will just say this first, it’s actually really neat.

So that’s the Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro in a nutshell, with our brief experience on it at the show floor, but now, we have to address the one thing that everyone has on their mind, the elephant in the room, and that’s Google Mobile Services.

Yes, you heard it here, it’s confirmed that there will be no support for Google Mobile Services. So, things like Google Maps, Google Drive, GMail, basically anything officially Google and the Google Play Store itself, there’s none of that.

To combat this issue, Huawei will be using their very own Huawei Mobile Services, which is basically Huawei’s own homegrown app store. Through Huawei Mobile Services, any open source Android apps will be available, via the Huawei App Gallery, just like it is on the Google Play Store, and should have timely updates as well.

But, say you really need those Google apps, well, you can perhaps try to sideload stuffs, and probably make things work that way, but with all the updates that Google churns out rather quickly, you will be doing quite a bit of manual work. Also, you might not even succeed in the first place. The other way, is to just simply using a browser to access those services, since the only thing you’ll lack, is the app, but not the service itself outright.

However, with the lack of support for Google Mobile Services, so take for example, Google Maps, this may also indirectly affect other third party apps such as Grab or Uber, which takes data from Google Maps. So, even if you manage to download the app from the Huawei App Gallery itself, it might not work, and that’s just one example.

For now however, we do not know how it’ll fully impact your daily lifestyle. Only time will tell and things may change in the near future.

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