Huawei P40 Pro, hands on: Another superb Huawei phone, but still missing Google services Review

Huawei’s freshly introduced six.fifty eight-inch P40 Professional (£899.99 inc. VAT), like its smaller sized sibling the P40 (£699.99), is a stunningly intended handset that majors on digicam functionality and presents a vary of other eye-catching characteristics.

Just like the Huawei Mate thirty Professional (£899.99), and the a lot more inexpensive Honor 9x Professional (€249), the P40 collection handsets absence Google Mobile Services. As a substitute they operate Android ten with Huawei’s EMUI overlay and obtain to Huawei Mobile Services with the limited Huawei AppGallery. As a final result, these equipment never compete on an even actively playing discipline with frequent Android-dependent handsets, and it’s this which — despite all the other goodies — defines the P40 Professional and P40, and the future (in June) major-of-the-vary P40 Professional+.


No Google apps or companies right here.

Graphic: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

Previous year’s Huawei P30 Professional was a scene-stealer, with its excellent quad-digicam system, good display and amazing battery lifestyle getting it appropriate to the major of the handset tree. A year on and Huawei carries on to innovate with its digicam-concentrated ‘P’ collection. But the absence of obtain to Google Mobile Services casts a prolonged shadow above the new handsets’ abilities.


As with my critique of the Huawei Mate thirty Professional, it’s well worth beginning with the software program aspect of points. Intrigued people will uncover guides on line on how to set up Google Mobile Services, but these are not formally supported, and I am executing no a lot more right here than mentioning this for completeness. This critique was carried out with the handset in the form it was presented to me by Huawei, which means it’s functioning just the open-source edition of Android ten, overlain by Huawei’s EMUI

In this issue there are various Google programs lacking, together with Chrome, Maps, YouTube, Gmail and the Perform Retail outlet. There are a good deal of other web browsers for Android, and Huawei has decided on to involve its personal as very well as Bing, via which you can obtain YouTube, Gmail and Maps. Huawei also contains its personal new music and video gamers, furthermore a vary of extras together with a notepad app, climate app, translator, calendar app, a uncover cell phone app, Huawei Pay out wallet and Microsoft Business. You can find the helpful Intelligent Remote, which works by using an IR blaster on the major of the handset to manage points like your Tv.

Huawei has its personal AppGallery, which it is populating with a lot more apps all the time. If the app you seek is not in the AppGallery and you choose to set up it by means of APK, then it will be a clean, clear set up. Your consumer record from an installation on a former handset will be lost, while Huawei’s Telephone Clone app, which is preinstalled on the P40 Professional, can just take treatment of that aspect of points.

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If you are not wedded to the Google ecosystem, you could be happy with what is on offer right here — specifically if you are well prepared to seek out workarounds to get your favourite apps functioning.



If you can live with what Huawei Mobile Services has to offer, the P40 Professional is a fantastically-engineered smartphone.

Graphic: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet


4 rear cameras: 50MP vast-angle, 40MP extremely-vast-angle, 12MP periscope zoom (5x), and time-of-flight (TOF). Notice the pearlescent Silver Frost backplate.

Graphic: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

Huawei likes to ring the improvements on handset design and style, and the P40 Professional is no different in this regard. The backplate is a primary example. The place past year’s P30 Professional was about shimmering colours and reflective finishes, right here we have two colour variants, a staid and demure black and the edition I was despatched, known as Silver Frost — or, a lot more prosaically, gray.

The again is made from glass but has a pearlescent, nearly opaque overall look. It has a matte end that nearly feels smooth to the contact and does not collect fingerprints. It really is sleek nevertheless does not come to feel slippy, and is as opposed to anything I have noticed on a handset right before. It really is totally satisfying. 

The rear digicam panel is significant and protrudes substantially. It is rectangular, in proportion to the backplate alone, with its Leica branding and other crafting in landscape format, just like the Huawei branding on the principal backplate. As a final result, it all appears to be like neat and tidy.

The appropriate aspect of the handset residences the electric power button and volume rocker. The Huawei Mate thirty Professional lacked a volume rocker, as an alternative inquiring people to double-faucet the prolonged edge of the handset to carry up a display-dependent volume slide, but right here we are in a lot more common territory. You can find the aforementioned IR blaster on the major, whilst the left edge is clear and the base residences a speaker grille, a USB-C port and the SIM caddy. The handset is IP68 qualified for dust and drinking water resistance, meaning it is ‘dust tight’ and can theoretically stand up to immersion in one.5m of drinking water for thirty minutes.


Top: safeguarded corner of the minimal-bezel Quad Curve Overflow Show. Previously mentioned: front digicam lozenge with 32MP selfie digicam and depth sensor for IR deal with unlock.

Photographs: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

Huawei has also presented the display a makeover, and the P40 Professional now packs a Quad-Curve Overflow Show. Unpacked, that terminology means that all four edges of the display curve so as to maximise the immersive viewing location and minimise bezels. We estimate the display-to-physique ratio to be an amazing 91.six%. The four corners of the cell phone are lifted and formed so as to guard the display edges, providing a tiny magnificence and design and style novelty.

The screen’s somewhat magnificent curved design and style is punctured by a sizeable lozenge in the major left corner housing the front digicam and a depth sensor that also supports deal with unlock. Although a reasonable volume of display place is presented above to the front digicam array, I prefer this strategy to mechanical pop-out cameras.

The six.fifty eight-inch OLED display has a resolution of 2,640 by one,two hundred pixels (441ppi) and a 90Hz refresh level. Other distributors could go for greater resolutions or a lot quicker refresh prices, but they do so at the expenditure of battery lifestyle, and hanging the appropriate balance among the two is vital. Huawei has made superior choices in this regard. The display is sharp and brilliant, whilst video appears to be like sleek. If you want to preserve battery lifestyle you can drop the refresh level again to 60Hz in the handset’s display configurations. 

Sound excellent from the base-mounted speaker is a bit of a weak link, however, with a absence of bass at greater volumes.

Battery lifestyle from the four,200mAh battery would seem incredibly superior. Anecdotally I obtained via two days from a one demand — while limited obtain to apps meant my every day use sample was considerably less intensive than it generally is. A few several hours of ongoing YouTube video performed via the web browser at 90Hz took the battery from 100% to 86%. The Laptop Mark Get the job done 2. battery lifestyle exam reviews 13 several hours 51 minutes for the Huawei P40 — eighty four minutes considerably less than the Mate thirty Professional with its four,500mAh battery. Fast charging (40W) and wi-fi charging (27W) are supported, with the proper Huawei chargers.

SEE: IT pro’s information to the evolution and impact of 5G technological know-how (cost-free PDF)

And so to the cameras, which are usually the principal function with Huawei’s P-collection handsets. 

The front digicam array includes a 32MP f/2.2 selfie digicam with autofocus and guidance for 4K video recording at 60fps and, as mentioned earlier, a depth sensor that allows IR deal with unlock.

The Leica-branded quad-digicam array at the again includes a 50MP vast-angle (f/one.9, OIS) digicam, a 40MP extremely-vast-angle (f/one.8) digicam, a 12MP periscope zoom (f/three.four, 5x optical zoom, OIS) digicam, and a time-of-flight (TOF) depth sensor. The principal 50MP vast angle digicam works by using a significant one/one.8-inch RYYB Extremely Vision Sensor with 2.44μm pixels that provides excellent low-mild overall performance. As very well as 5x optical zoom on the periscope lens, you can get 10x hybrid zoom and 50x digital zoom.


Huawei P40 Professional photographs shot with 10x hybrid (left) and 50x digital (appropriate) zoom.

Photographs: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

It really is hard to adequately exam a digicam system at the minute, thanks to social isolation restrictions. Nonetheless, the P40 Pro’s 50x zoom sent some exciting outcomes (see higher than). I appear forward to screening the P40 Professional in a lot more expansive problems. For the document, the Huawei P40 Professional at the moment heads up the influential DxOMARK smartphone digicam rankings.

The standard specs are major-notch, as you would be expecting from a flagship-course handset.

Huawei’s primary-edge Kirin 990 5G chipset provides a good deal of electric power for the P40 Professional, which carried out very very well with 8GB of RAM in guidance. My critique unit experienced 256GB of internal storage, of which 17GB was applied out of the box, leaving 239GB cost-free. The handset supports two SIMs, or 1 SIM and a proprietary Huawei Nano Memory (NM) card. There is also eSIM guidance.


Huawei has introduced some exciting new characteristics to the P40 Professional, together with a 90Hz refresh level for the OLED display, a curved display on all four sides, primary-edge cameras, and a backplate design and style that definitely does crack new ground.

Regrettably, these characteristics are not adequate to generate the P40 Professional an unequivocal recommendation. Which is mainly because we never know how far Huawei can just take its AppGallery, or how prolonged it will be right before there is certainly a vital mass of programs that will satisfy most people. This is all that holds the P40 Professional again: with Google Mobile Services on board, it would have been my handset of the year so far.

If you are amazed by the P40 Professional but set off by the software program condition, think about past year’s continue to-exceptional P30 Professional. It costs £270 considerably less (£629.99 inc. VAT with 8GB RAM and 128GB of storage) and continue to comes with Google Mobile Services.

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