Premium Huawei Mate 30 smartphones unveiled along with new smartwatch and TV
The Huawei Mate 30 series launch event has now taken place in Munich. While this event was designed to showcase the company’s latest smartphone solutions, they only represented a part of what was announced today.
Joining the Huawei Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro, Huawei also announced Porsche Design and 5G versions of the Mate 30, a new Watch GT 2 smartwatch, and the all-new Huawei Vision TV.
Huawei also confirmed availability and pricing for its FreeBuds 3.
Huawei Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro
The Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro were, of course, the stars of the show. These represent the company’s latest smartphone offerings and while they do not come with Google apps, they do come with a heightened and premium camera experience.
The Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro makes use of a quad-camera setup. The setup is comprised of a 40-megapixel main sensor along with a 16-megapixel ultra-wide camera, an 8-megapixel telephoto sensor, and what Huawei refers to as a laser focus sensor.
As you might expect with Huawei, the cameras are also packed full of features and smarts. Depth sensing, 45x zoom, video recording in 4K at 60fps, slow-motion filming in 720p at 7680fps, and more are included.
The front-facing camera setup appears to be equally impressive. Huawei has bundled the main selfie camera along with a 3D depth camera. In addition, the notch also features a proximity sensor and a gesture sensor. While there’s a lot happening in the notch, Huawei has managed to pack all of this into a fairly small notch.
Mate design continues to evolve
The small notch is designed to maximize the usable display and that’s sort of the main design element in general with the Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro. For example, these are phones that utilize a “waterfall” display – a catchy way of describing an acute curved display. Regardless, the takeaway is more display overall.
This is not the case for both models, however, as it is only the Pro version which comes with the waterfall display. The standard model employs more of a traditional and flatter display. That’s not the only difference either as the displays are different sizes as well.
The larger phone is the standard model with its 6.62-inch display. This compares to the Mate 30 Pro and its 6.53-inch screen.
Battery life is another area where you’ll find a difference. In spite of the larger size overall, the standard model comes with the lesser capacity battery, although both batteries are fairly substantial compared to other phones. The standard model features a 4,200 mAh capacity battery while the the Mate 30 Pro features a 4,500 mAh capacity battery.
As to be expected with Huawei, advanced charging features are also on offer, including wired and wireless charging, as well as fast-charging.
Moving to the internals and there’s very little difference between the two models. Both come loaded with 8GB RAM although they do differ in storage – 128GB vs 256GB. Both also feature the company’s latest SoC solution, the Kirin 990.
Just some of the additional features include 3D Face Unlock, in-screen fingerprint sensor, Always-On-Display, virtual volume keys, and gesture control.
The Huawei Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro come running on EMUI 10, based on Android 10.
More options, more choice
Besides coming in a number of different color options, and two main styles, Huawei is offering the Mate 30 series in two additional ways.
The first is the Porsche Design version. Similar to previous Porsche Design models, the idea here is to offer more of a luxury smartphone. This mostly applies to the design with a heightened quality outer shell, including handmade premium leather and a vertical glass stripe.
Although there’s also a boost inside as well. This mostly comes via the inclusion of 12GB RAM and 512GB storage.
Then there’s the 5G version. Huawei is also releasing the Mate 30 series as a 5G phone. While 5G availability is still a sticking point for most consumers, Huawei touts its Mate 30 Pro 5G version as better than the competition.
This better sentiment mainly comes down to the antennas. The Mate 30 Pro 5G model features no less than fourteen 5G antennas and according to Huawei, that’s more than anyone else.
Similarly, Huawei also claims its 5G phone supports more 5G bands than any other smartphone. In total, the Mate 30 Pro 5G supports eight 5G bands and to highlight the more point, Huawei referred to Samsung and the fact its Galaxy Note 10+ 5G phone only supports three 5G bands.
Generally speaking, besides the 5G functionality and increased RAM/storage, the Mate 30 Pro 5G offers the same specs, features and experience as the non-5G version.
No Google apps
What is likely to be the biggest hurdle for customers outside of China to get past is the lack of Google apps.
At the moment, Huawei is currently forbidden from working with U.S. companies, including Google. Therefore, the Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro do not ship with any Google apps at all.
Instead, Huawei is making the best use of its own app ecosystem. Although this is limited in comparison, Huawei says it will continue to invest (and now more heavily) in the ecosystem.
Pricing and availability
So far, Huawei has only announced European pricing for the Mate 30 series.
The standard model costs 799 euros. The Mate 30 Pro comes in at 1,099 euros, while the 5G version goes on sale for 1,199 euros. The Porsche Design Mate 30 RS costs 2,095 euros.
Huawei Watch GT 2
Following the Mate 30 series announcement, Huawei announced its latest smartwatch, the Huawei Watch GT 2.
In fact, two versions were announced. This is one of the major differences between the current and previous model as the original Watch GT was only available in one size.
On offer is either a 46mm or 42mm smartwatch and size is not the only difference. The smaller version comes with a 1.2-inch display and a 390 x 390 resolution, along with a 20mm strap. The larger model’s display comes in at 1.39-inches, the resolution at 454 x 454, and the strap at 22mm.
Battery is another area of difference. Huawei has yet to provide specifics on the battery capacity of either watch, but in short, the larger one is expected to offer up to two weeks of usage before giving up. In comparison, the smaller one is only expected to last up to a week.
These estimations also depend on various factors. For example, both watches feature GPS and when enabled the battery life decreases to around 30 hours. They also feature Bluetooth allowing users to make Bluetooth calls using the watch. In this mode, the battery life decreases further, down to ten hours.
The rest of the main features include extended health support with stress monitoring and multiple workout and running modes. This is in addition to enough storage to hold 500 songs and a 5ATM underwater rating. The Watch GT 2 is powered by a Kirin A1 and comes running on Huawei’s own LiteOS.
The Huawei Watch GT 2 goes on sale in October in a number of different styles and colors. Pricing for the smaller model starts at 229 euros with the starting price rising to 249 euros for the larger model.
Huawei Vision TV
Huawei had already entered the TV game through its sub-brand, Honor. However, at this year’s Mate 30 event the company also launched a Huawei branded TV set.
The new TV arrives as the Huawei Vision TV and looks to offer a more premium experience compared to the Honor Vision version.
One of the big selling points here is the TV’s smarts. Huawei is positioning this TV as a really smart TV with AI filtering through to various areas. For example, the AI is able to handle voice commands, track faces, and control other compatible smart products in the home.
In terms of audio, the smarts are here too with Huawei Vision utilizing an 8+1+1 “intelligent sound system.” Besides the additional speakers, the intelligence looks to provide a sound that's relative to the environment.
Like the Honor Vision TV, the new Huawei Vision TV also runs on the company’s own HarmonyOS.
Another similarity between the Honor and Huawei Vision TVs is Huawei's version also comes equipped with a webcam. This is there for times when a video call is needed, but is designed to be hidden away when not in use. So this is not a webcam that’s always there or requires a privacy switch to shut down. It lives inside the TV and pops up when activated.
The Huawei Vision TV is set to be released in four sizes: 55, 65, 75 and 85-inches. Huawei has yet to reveal pricing.
Huawei FreeBuds 3
The Huawei FreeBuds 3 also made an appearance at the event. These earbuds were not officially announced at this event as they were first unveiled a few weeks ago during IFA 2019.
However, at the previous event there was no word on availability or pricing. That’s what was announced today.
The FreeBuds 3 are priced at 179 euros (U.S. pricing was not announced). The new earbuds are set to initially go on sale in October in China and Europe. This will then be followed by availability in the Middle East, Russia, Asia Pacific and Latin America from November 2019. Again, U.S. availability was not announced.
Generally speaking, the FreeBuds 3 are just another set of wireless earbuds. If you asked Huawei, the company would tell you they are smarter earbuds due to the inclusion of the Kirin A1 chip. That’s the same chip in the new Watch GT 2 smartwatch and again, is designed with various Bluetooth tweaks in mind.
The FreeBuds 3 also make use of AI and once again, this filters through to various elements of the earbuds, such as the Audio DSP.
The FreeBuds 3 also features Active Noise Cancellation and wireless charging.