Huawei’s Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro Review

The Huawei Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro arrive now with a complete load of cool features.  Each telephone packs the new supercharged Kirin 970 octa-core chip and funky double camera on the back but also wraps them up in a slick-looking body with glass on the front and rear.

Apparently, the Huawei Mate 10 Pro is your “main” one, and it is that one that we will have the ability to get from the UK (both versions will be available in Australia).  No US release for either phone has been announced yet.

The Pro is unquestionably the most exciting of the two.  At 6 inches, it is bigger than the 5.9-inch Mate 10, but with thinner bezels on all sides, Huawei reckons that the 6-inch display fits into precisely the exact same size body you would have found on last year’s 5.5-inch device.  It is certainly comfortable to hold.

Huawei attained the thinner bezel by ditching the home button on the front, moving the fingerprint scanner to the rear, beneath the camera.  The display now stretches right to the borders and with the Pro’s resolution of 2,160×1,080 pixels, everything seems fine and crisp.  Oddly, the conventional Mate has a greater 2,560×1,440-pixel resolution, although I could not see a lot of gaps between them when I put the phones side by side.  The Mate 10 still has a home button and fingerprint scanner under the monitor.

Both displays support HDR and are bright enough to sear your eyeballs right out — or at least make them simple to use under bright sunshine.

Huawei has taken a cue from Apple in shifting the back design from metal to glass.  But while Apple made the move to encourage wireless charging, Huawei’s choice is purely down to aesthetics — there is no wireless charging on either version of their phone.  The phones seem pretty good, though that glistening glass is an entire fingerprint magnet.

The Mate 10 includes a standard 3.5mm headphone jack, but bizarrely, you won’t find one on the Pro.  Alternatively, you will need to use Bluetooth headphones or locate a wired set that sticks into the USB-C socket.  Your present 3.5mm headphones won’t work with the Mate 10 Pro.  The Pro version does have IP67 waterproofing, however, which the typical Mate does not.  Huawei argued the most important reason for this difference was that it was too tricky to waterproof the headphone jack on the conventional Mate.  

Huawei says its Kirin 970 octa-core chip is lightning fast, so you can expect it to deal with any game you can see in the Google Play shop, and image editing is going to be a breeze.  These CPUs will also be equipped with what Huawei is calling neural processing units, which will allegedly enhance the Mate 10 and Pro’s artificial intelligence.  The tangible advantages of the, according to the company, are enhanced battery life and camera.  The phones can identify unique types of a picture — such as point, individual or even dog — and adjust camera settings so before the image is taken.

The normal Huawei Mate 10 has 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage, while the Pro has 6GB with 128GB of storage — even though there is no ability to expand that storage with a microSD card.

Huawei is sticking with a similar dual camera setup to people we have seen on its P10 already.  A 12-megapixel sensor shoots in color, though a 20-megapixel sensor shoots exclusively in black and white.  Shots from both detectors looked great on the P10 and with the Mate 10’s wider aperture (currently f/1.6 on both lenses, which lets in more light) and a couple of software tweaks, I am excited about seeing what it could do.

Huawei has yet to say exactly how much the Mates will go on sale for in the United Kingdom.  In Australia, the Mate 10 will retail for AU$899 while the Pro will cost $1,099.  Those costs convert to about $700 and $860, although the phone is not likely to receive a wide carrier launch in the USA.

Huawei Mate 10 (and Mate 10 Pro) Specifications

  • 5.9-inch screen, 2,560×1,440-pixel resolution (Pro: 6-inch, 2,160×1,080-pixels)
  • Double 12-megapixel color camera with 20-megapixel monochrome camera
  • 8-megapixel front-facing camera
  • 4,000mAh battery, non-removable, supports rapid charge but no wireless charging
  • Kirin 970 octa-core chip
  • 4GB RAM, 64GB storage on Mate 10 (6GB, 128GB on Pro without a MicroSD support)
  • IP67 water-resistance on the Pro only