Available from Carphone Warehouse for £599
It might play second fiddle to its bigger brother, but the P20 can hold its own
The only device that can understand the Huawei P20 is the iPhone 8. What do they have in common? Both are overshadowed by superior big brothers the Huawei P20 Pro and iPhone X. How did they get in this situation? Sporting last year’s mainline moniker, that’s how. However, the standard P20 is a great phone in its own right, doing the fundamentals of a daily driver to a great level.
The camera, processing speed, design, battery life – all stand up well to the demands of a heavy user and will definitely cater well to moderates. The key difference between the P20 and the Pro is the camera (both are AI supported). Our review subject has a 12MP + 20MP dual camera compared to the Pro’s triple-lens 40MP + 20MP + 8MP monster snapper.
Picture quality differs greatly with the Pro producing some impressive stills. However, the P20 still produces great pictures in low light and colour-popping ones in the sun. Aside from the camera, phone fans will see it’s a lighter device with a smaller 5.8-inch LCD display, whereas the Pro has an OLED panel.
OS: Android 8.1 Oreo
Processor: 2.4GHz octa-core Hisilicon Kirin 970
Resolution: 1080 x 2240 pixels
Memory: 4GB RAM
Internal memory: 128GB
Water-resistance: Splash resistant
MicroSD compatibility: None
Rear camera: Dual 12 megapixels
Front camera: 24 megapixels
Video: 4K recording
Connectivity: WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, NFC, USB-C
Cellular speed: CAT 18 – 1.2 Gbps
Dimensions: 149.1 x 70.8 x 7.7 mm
Weight: 165g Battery: 3,400mA
The Huawei P20, battery life will never limit you, thanks to AI driven power management for maximum efficiency and Huawei SuperCharge, for fast refuelling. Experience the power of AI with the Kirin 970 Neural Network Processing Unit. With outstanding battery life and superior speed, it’s a leap forward for the P series. In partnership with Dolby, the Huawei P20 will use AI to detect the type of audio you’re listening too, adjusting the level to give you the optimal listening experience. The AI built into the Huawei P20 can distinguish between your voice and the background sound, cancelling out unnecessary noise. Transform your smartphone into a desktop PC with a single cable. Mirror your display or work in dual screen mode without a cradle, using the Huawei P20 as a trackpad or keypad. The Huawei P20 uses the power of AI to understand the subject of your photo in real time, automatically adjusting camera settings to capture the perfect shot. You don’t have to be an expert to get expert results.
Again, the core elements of what you look for in a smartphone is present and done well. It’s for those that don’t mind slightly less RAM, camera capabilities and a lighter/ diminutive device. On that last point, it’s great to use one-handed and is even better to do so thanks to Huawei’s custom software – where you can swipe right twice on the on-screen navigation keys to bring the display down to a thumb-friendly size.
The downside to the device is the lack of water-resistance. It can handle a shower from mother nature (just not too much) but not your showerhead to support your terrible impression of Celine Dion. There’s also no wireless charging support for those that have got used to that, but it does make up for that with incredible charge time.
So, if you’re happy with taking the less impressive device in the P20 line, this could be the one for you. But do keep in mind the P20 Pro is one impressive device. If you test one out after buying the standard P20 you will doubtlessly suffer a huge case of FOMO (fear of missing out).