Dear Huawei; If you are spending millions of dollars on a product launch, (and flying journos all over the world to Paris) you might want to spend some of those resources to try and keep things a little bit more secret. 

As Evan Blass tweeted “Not really even trying anymore are they? #P30.” 

After weeks and weeks of endless leaks (even from Amazon!), Huawei’s supposed grand reveal became more like a formal presentation as everyone in the audience already knew what to expect from the new P30 series. Granted there were still a few surprises, especially because of those live demos, but pretty much all the information and specs of the P30 were already out, days before the Paris Convention Center event. Like I said last week, for a company accused of spying, they kinda suck at keeping their own secrets. 

If you still have no idea what the “P” stands for, Huawei CEO Richard Yu’s presentation probably gave you a very clear idea. The Huawei P30 series builds on the P Series DNA in design and photography and is the company’s most advanced series of smartphone cameras. 

Now if you’ve never owned or tried a Huawei smartphone (but why?!?) you were probably blown away by the presentation and all those advancements they’ve made in their camera technology, but as a longtime Huawei user—since P8 B.L. (Before Leica) does the P30 really #RewriteTheRules?

Instead of just listing the specs and features like everyone else, I’ve decided to do something a bit different. To borrow a line from my favorite internet host Simon Miller (from WhatCulture Wrestling) “Time to up those downs” from Huawei’s P30 Paris Presentation.

UP: The New DXO King. After almost a year, the P20 Pro and Mate 20 Pro has been dethroned in the DXO Ranking. Its successor achieving a record-high overall DxOMark score of 112 is of course, the Huawei P30 Pro. Thanks to its Leica Quad Camera System– a 40MP main camera with SuperSpectrum Sensor, a 20MP ultra-wide-angle camera, an 8MP telephoto camera, plus a new Time of Flight Camera for depth sensing. 

UP: Low Light Monster.The P30 Pro has the highest ISO in a smartphone camera with the P30 having an ISO value of 204,800 and the P30 Pro a whopping 409,600! This allows you to capture clear photos even in (almost) total darkness using handheld night mode. I don’t know about you but I don’t plan on capturing ghostly images anytime soon.

UP: Improved Video + Dual Video:The P30 promises a new era of studio-grade videography with its low-light video capture AIS and OIS support stabilization for all video capture settings. Another interesting addition is Huawei Dual-View Video which lets you capture two perspectives of the same scene at the same time by using multiple cameras simultaneously. This provides you a full view of a scene while also capturing a close-up of a subject. Not sure how you’ll be able to save and edit it though.

UP: Colors:Breathing Crystal, Amber Sunrise, Pearl White, Aurora those colors are as gorgeous as they sound. Huawei’s gradient finish is still the best out there and I’m praying to get the Amber Sunrise.

Now for the Downs:

DOWN: Lower screen resolution:The P30 Pro’s OLED display, despite being bigger, is significantly less sharp; with the 6.47-inch curved screen only 1080p compared to the Mate 20 Pro’s is 1440p. Will there be a noticeable difference? 

DOWN: Less secure Face recognition?There’s a reason why the Mate 20 Pro has a larger front notch, and that is for housing its 3D facial unlock tech. Since the P30 Pro only has a tiny teardrop notch, it doesn’t have that tech and could make Face ID even less secure. It also lacks a front earpiece entirely, as it uses its display to create something called “electromagnetic levitation,” a fancy way of saying the screen is used as a speaker. Will this have an effect on call quality? 

DOWN: StalkerCam. Richard Yu said “The galaxy phone cannot see galaxy but the Huawei P30 Pro you can see the galaxy, you can take photo of the galaxy.”Clap. Clap. Clap. 

The P30 Pro has this “periscope camera” that allows you to zoom 5x and 10x without loss in quality. Pretty good when using it during concerts, but up to 50x zoom? Now that can be a little too creepy. 

DOWN: Design:Don’t get me wrong, the P30 looks amazing, but still also looks like the P20 and all the other Android phones with vertical camera setup. I actually prefer the Mate’s square setup or the Galaxy S10s horizontal cam placement which makes them easily recognizable, with or without a case.

DOWN: “Chinglish” Presentation. I’ve met Mr. Yu a few years back and he’s a very nice guy, but I really do think they need someone else to do some of the presentation for him. A lot of comments during the livestream were from people saying that it was quite hard to understand what he was saying.

DOWN: Gentle Monster.Okay, we get it. You’ve created smart glasses that looks more fashionable than weird, and yes it does look cool. But the presentation about the company (do we really need to know about the concept behind the stores?) took way too long. People watching the livestream were begging for him to get off the stage because it was getting boring and his English was even worse. 

Again, these are just my initial thoughts on the Huawei P30 series based on what I’ve seen during the livestream. We’ll have a full “real world use” review once we get our hands on a review unit in the next few weeks!

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