Huawei Mate 30, the forgotten Huawei smartphone19. November 2019
The situation with Huawei is unfortunately still a bit difficult at the moment, but with a bit of luck, it will soon be solved. Or if you watch this video, it maid will no longer be a problem. Currently, however, Huawei devices do not have Google services. Sometimes you can install these, but that is not guaranteed. That includes the Mate 30.
And if you’ve heard something about the latest Mate 30 series, it’s always been the Huawei Mate 30 Pro. The Mate 30 fell into oblivion. But not for me! That’s why we’re taking a look now.
Huawei’s smartphones are among the best when it comes to hardware. You get the Kirin 990 with 6 or 8 GB of RAM. The internal memory ranges from 128 to 256 GB and can be extended with Huawei’s own format of the Nano Memory Card. If you can live without memory expansion, you could also insert two SIM cards.
This is powered by a 4200 mAh battery that supports fast charging with up to 40W. But of course there is also wireless charging and that works with an impressive 27 watts. And if you want to recharge other devices wirelessly, you can do that as well. The battery can easily handle more than a full day of intensive use.
No one can complain about the build quality when it comes to Huawei products and the Mate 30 is no exception. The glass and metal sandwich just feels great in the hand. The washing machine optics of the camera module is the only special design element. Otherwise, there is not much to say about design, there are no real surprises.
And it’s no surprise, but I still like the red accent on the power button very much. And the buttons are also among the best that you can find on a smartphone. Although you interact mainly via the screen with the smartphone, to get good feedback when using the buttons is definitely very positive. Lately, many manufacturers are not focusing on good buttons anymore.
A headphone jack?
Something that is still surprising to find in a smartphone at the end of 2019 is a headphone jack. If you have not exchanged all your headphones with Bluetooth versions, you can still use your wired headphones here.
However, you have to live with a single down-facing mono speaker. Although it sounds okay, it is just a mono speaker. So for better sound just use the headphone jack with headphones.
Big OLED with no frills
The screen is a 6.62-inch OLED with a FullHD+ resolution of 2340 x 1080 pixels. That’s just under 400 PPI. It’s still a sharp display anyway. Also, the colors and black levels are great as is the contrast, which is typical for an OLED. There is no pop-up camera so there is a notch.
And in contrast to the Mate 30 Pro, this got a flat display, which I personally like better. It may not look as futuristic and chic as a curved screen, but it’s so much more practical in everyday use. There are no distortions on the edge and the operation is easier.
In the notch, it looks as if you get two cameras, but this is just a 24 MP front camera. The second camera is a depth sensor for the 3D Face Unlock. And even if this type of Face Unlock is safer than the simply unlocking mechanism that can be found on other Android phones with a front camera, I would still always use the fingerprint sensor.
Cameras as far as the eye can see
The pictures of the front camera are surprisingly detailed. Although there are many smartphones with high megapixel numbers, they can rarely convince. The front camera of the Mate 30 produces very detailed and sharp images.
However, the portrait mode of the front camera does not seem to work, because although the mode is available, I did not get it to work. Here I expected more, because there is this sensor for the 3D face recognition.
When it comes to videos of the front camera, I am also satisfying. The stabilization is okay and the picture is also impressive. However, 1080p is the maximum resolution here. That should actually be 4K by now.
On the back, we find, in the round camera element, 4 cameras. Only 3 of them are real cameras, the fourth element is a 3D depth sensor. The cameras are a 40 MP main camera, a 16 MP super wide-angle camera and a triple telephoto camera with 8 MPs.
I really like the pictures of the cameras. The colors look great and the dynamic range is also very good. The combination of the three cameras lets you always get the right picture.
Personally, I always prefer a telephoto camera before a wide-angle, but this tele-camera has not convinced me so much. This is not due to the triple optical zoom, which in combination with the 40 MP sensor of the main camera also produces 5x hybrid zoom pictures. It’s great to have such a powerful zoom in your pocket. But the sensor of the tele-camera is simply much worse. On the one hand, the dynamic range is significantly worse and the focus takes much longer. The pictures can not convince in the details. Maybe the main camera and the super-wide angle camera are just too good and make the tele-camera look worse, but I had wished that the tele-camera can compete better.
Videos can be recorded in 4K and the main camera and the super wide-angle camera do a really good job, but the telephoto should rather not be used.
Overall, you get good pictures and videos from all the cameras, but while the main and super wide-angle camera does an exceptionally good job, it can take a while with the tele-camera until you get the desired result. Nevertheless, it is great to have the three cameras on board and be prepared for any situation.
2019 standard technology
Among the things that are almost expected by now include NFC, Bluetooth 5.0 and an IP68 rating. You get all that with the Huawei Mate 30. In addition to the 3D face recognition, as I said, there is also a fingerprint sensor. This sits under the display and it is an optical fingerprint sensor. For me, this has always worked quickly and reliably.
Software is such a thing
Technically, the Mate 30 is definitely a smartphone, which I would like to have always with me. But we have to talk about the software again. I mentioned at the beginning that the situation is a bit difficult. At the time of this recording the Mate 30 is running on Android 9. However, an upgrade to Android 10 is already announced.
It is also an EMUI interface with all the advantages and disadvantages. By the way, this is currently EMUI 10.0.
If you have Google services installed, there are no restrictions at all. You can download and use all apps as usual.
And they are all running very well. No matter if it is a normal app or graphically intensive game, everything runs smoothly.
Conclusion to the Mate 30
If the small problem with the US sanctions did not exist, the Mate 30 would be a smartphone that I would recommend immediately. But everyone has to know for sure whether he wants to take the risk and wants a smartphone that may not have Google services. However, I am confident that this problem will soon be eliminated.
The Huawei Mate 30 is available in the 6 GB RAM and 128 GB internal memory variant for under € 500. In any case, a really good price for a smartphone with great hardware.