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

Huawei’s recently produced 6.58-inch P40 Professional (£899.ninety nine inc. VAT), like its lesser sibling the 6.1-inch P40 (£699.ninety nine), is a stunningly created handset that majors on digicam capability and features a assortment of other eye-catching features.

Just like the Huawei Mate thirty Professional (£899.ninety nine), and the much more very affordable Honor 9x Professional (€249), the P40 series handsets deficiency Google Cellular Products and services. Rather they operate Android ten with Huawei’s EMUI ten.1 overlay and access to Huawei Cellular Products and services with the restricted Huawei AppGallery. As a end result, these devices you should not compete on an even playing area with typical Android-based mostly handsets, and it really is this which — regardless of all the other goodies — defines the P40 Professional and P40, and the impending (in June) top rated-of-the-assortment P40 Professional+.


No Google applications or services below.

Image: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

Very last year’s Huawei P30 Professional was a scene-stealer, with its outstanding quad-digicam method, fantastic display and outstanding battery everyday living taking it ideal to the top rated of the handset tree. A yr on and Huawei proceeds to innovate with its digicam-targeted ‘P’ series. But the deficiency of access to Google Cellular Products and services casts a extended shadow about the new handsets’ capabilities.


As with my evaluation of the Huawei Mate thirty Professional, it really is well worth starting with the software package aspect of matters. Fascinated people will come across guides on the net on how to install Google Cellular Products and services, but these are not formally supported, and I’m doing no much more below than mentioning this for completeness. This evaluation was carried out with the handset in the variety it was provided to me by Huawei, which suggests it really is jogging just the open up-supply edition of Android ten, overlain by Huawei’s EMUI ten.1.

In this situation there are numerous Google applications lacking, like Chrome, Maps, YouTube, Gmail and the Play Retailer. There are plenty of other internet browsers for Android, and Huawei has preferred to involve its personal as perfectly as Bing, through which you can access YouTube, Gmail and Maps. Huawei also consists of its personal music and online video gamers, in addition a assortment of extras like a notepad application, climate application, translator, calendar application, a come across mobile phone application, Huawei Pay out wallet and Microsoft Office. There is certainly the practical Wise Remote, which works by using an IR blaster on the top rated of the handset to management matters like your Television.

Huawei has its personal AppGallery, which it is populating with much more applications all the time. If the application you seek is not in the AppGallery and you choose to install it by means of APK, then it will be a clean, cleanse install. Your user record from an set up on a earlier handset will be lost, though Huawei’s Phone Clone application, which is preinstalled on the P40 Professional, can consider care of that aspect of matters.

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If you might be not wedded to the Google ecosystem, you may be happy with what is actually on give below — primarily if you might be ready to seek out workarounds to get your favorite applications jogging.



If you can live with what Huawei Cellular Products and services has to give, the P40 Professional is a beautifully-engineered smartphone.

Image: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet


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

Image: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

Huawei likes to ring the changes on handset layout, and the P40 Professional is no different in this respect. The backplate is a primary example. Where past year’s P30 Professional was about shimmering colors and reflective finishes, below we have two colour variants, a staid and demure black and the edition I was despatched, referred to as Silver Frost — or, much more prosaically, grey.

The back again is produced from glass but has a pearlescent, virtually opaque visual appearance. It has a matte finish that virtually feels gentle to the contact and won’t acquire fingerprints. It truly is sleek yet does not experience slippy, and is not like anything at all I have observed on a handset prior to. It truly is fully pleasing. 

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

The ideal aspect of the handset homes the ability button and volume rocker. The Huawei Mate thirty Professional lacked a volume rocker, as an alternative asking people to double-faucet the extended edge of the handset to carry up a display-based mostly volume slide, but below we are in much more regular territory. There is certainly the aforementioned IR blaster on the top rated, although the remaining edge is obvious and the bottom homes a speaker grille, a USB-C port and the SIM caddy. The handset is IP68 accredited for dust and drinking water resistance, this means it is ‘dust tight’ and can theoretically face up to immersion in 1.5m of drinking water for thirty minutes.


Top rated: guarded corner of the small-bezel Quad Curve Overflow Screen. Previously mentioned: entrance digicam lozenge with 32MP selfie digicam and depth sensor for IR deal with unlock.

Illustrations or photos: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

Huawei has also provided the display a makeover, and the P40 Professional now packs a Quad-Curve Overflow Screen. Unpacked, that terminology suggests that all four edges of the display curve so as to maximise the immersive viewing region and minimise bezels. We determine the display-to-system ratio to be an outstanding ninety one.6%. The four corners of the mobile phone are lifted and formed so as to defend the display edges, supplying a tiny magnificence and layout novelty.

The screen’s fairly magnificent curved layout is punctured by a sizeable lozenge in the top rated remaining corner housing the entrance digicam and a depth sensor that also supports deal with unlock. While a honest quantity of display area is provided about to the entrance digicam array, I want this method to mechanical pop-out cameras.

The 6.58-inch OLED display has a resolution of 2,640 by 1,200 pixels (441ppi) and a 90Hz refresh charge. Other suppliers may go for higher resolutions or more rapidly refresh fees, but they do so at the expenditure of battery everyday living, and striking the ideal harmony in between the two is vital. Huawei has produced excellent conclusions in this respect. The display is sharp and vibrant, although online video appears to be sleek. If you want to conserve battery everyday living you can fall the refresh charge back again to 60Hz in the handset’s display options. 

Seem excellent from the bottom-mounted speaker is a bit of a weak link, even though, with a deficiency of bass at higher volumes.

Battery everyday living from the 4,200mAh battery would seem incredibly excellent. Anecdotally I got through two days from a single demand — though restricted access to applications intended my each day usage sample was a lot less intensive than it usually is. Three hrs of continuous YouTube online video played through the internet browser at 90Hz took the battery from 100% to 86%. The Personal computer Mark Perform 2. battery everyday living test stories thirteen hrs fifty one minutes for the Huawei P40 — 84 minutes a lot less than the Mate thirty Professional with its 4,500mAh battery. Fast charging (40W) and wireless charging (27W) are supported, with the acceptable Huawei chargers.

SEE: IT pro’s manual to the evolution and affect of 5G technologies (absolutely free PDF)

And so to the cameras, which are generally the principal occasion with Huawei’s P-series handsets. 

The entrance digicam array contains a 32MP f/2.2 selfie digicam with autofocus and support for 4K online video recording at 60fps and, as pointed out before, a depth sensor that allows IR deal with unlock.

The Leica-branded quad-digicam array at the back again contains a 50MP large-angle (f/1.9, OIS) digicam, a 40MP extremely-large-angle (f/1.8) digicam, a 12MP periscope zoom (f/3.4, 5x optical zoom, OIS) digicam, and a time-of-flight (TOF) depth sensor. The principal 50MP large angle digicam works by using a huge 1/1.8-inch RYYB Extremely Vision Sensor with 2.44μm pixels that provides outstanding minimal-light-weight general performance. As perfectly as 5x optical zoom on the periscope lens, you can get 10x hybrid zoom and 50x electronic zoom.


Huawei P40 Professional visuals shot with 10x hybrid (remaining) and 50x electronic (ideal) zoom.

Illustrations or photos: Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

It truly is complicated to sufficiently test a digicam method at the second, owing to social isolation restrictions. Nonetheless, the P40 Pro’s 50x zoom shipped some attention-grabbing success (see over). I glance ahead to testing the P40 Professional in much more expansive conditions. For the report, the Huawei P40 Professional currently heads up the influential DxOMARK smartphone digicam rankings.

The common technical specs are top rated-notch, as you would count on from a flagship-class handset.

Huawei’s leading-edge Kirin 990 5G chipset presents plenty of ability for the P40 Professional, which executed very perfectly with 8GB of RAM in support. My evaluation device experienced 256GB of inner storage, of which 17GB was utilized out of the box, leaving 239GB absolutely free. The handset supports two SIMs, or just one SIM and a proprietary Huawei Nano Memory (NM) card. There is also eSIM support.


Huawei has brought some attention-grabbing new features to the P40 Professional, like a 90Hz refresh charge for the OLED display, a curved display on all four sides, leading-edge cameras, and a backplate layout that really does crack new floor.

Sadly, these features are not sufficient to generate the P40 Professional an unequivocal suggestion. That is simply because we you should not know how much Huawei can consider its AppGallery, or how extended it will be prior to you will find a significant mass of applications that will satisfy most people. This is all that retains the P40 Professional back again: with Google Cellular Products and services on board, it would have been my handset of the yr so much.

If you might be impressed by the P40 Professional but set off by the software package situation, consider past year’s nonetheless-superb P30 Professional. It fees £270 a lot less (£629.ninety nine inc. VAT with 8GB RAM and 128GB of storage) and nonetheless comes with Google Cellular Products and services.

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