Huawei Mate 10 Pro

Cool factor **** | Usability ***** | Value for money ***

Last week Huawei launched the Mate 10 Pro and Mate 10 Porsche Design models to the SA market. They are the latest flagship devices from the Chinese manufacturer and it’s clear they’re aggressively pursuing the top end of the market here.

Both devices offer serious specs and beautiful materials, as well as their top processors.

Huawei SA’s Avashnee Moodley told the Financial Mail this is a deliberate shift to the mid-and high-end. "We are targeting the premium user with a 7-10 LSM as our devices now cater for the needs of these consumers. In this particular segment, we are number two in SA, with a year-to-date market share of 18.1% in the US$400-$600 segment," she says, citing data from market researchers GFK (as of the end of September 2017).

The Mate 10 Pro will set you back a lot more than $600 though, with a recommended retail price of R17,999, and the brand-collaboration device (the Porsche Design model) will set you back a whopping R26,999 — higher than the expected cost of the forthcoming iPhone X. Huawei said at the launch that it is planning to bring in just 999 Porsche Design handsets to SA, and that the model is expected to be in high demand in luxury markets like Dubai.

The Pro version has a much less niche market appeal, and is priced roughly in line with the likes of the iPhone 8 Plus or Samsung Galaxy S8+. The Pro offers a six-inch OLED screen, with the wide format ratio of 18:9 and resolution of 1080 x 2160. It’s dual sim, and is Huawei’s first water, dust and splash resistant phone, with a rating of IP67.

The rear camera uses a "Leica Dual Lens" setup with a 20MP monochrome sensor and a 12MP RGB sensor, optical stabilisation, and a large f/1.6 aperture which allows you to take better low light and shallow depth-of-field images. It also includes the use of smart "photographic algorithms" to identify scenes and objects in the scenes and adjust settings to best suit these, promising better night and sunset snaps, deep contrast and vivid colour.

Both the Pro and Porsche devices include the Kirin 970 processor and an embedded artificial intelligence (AI) processor, which Huawei promises delivers better performance and energy efficiency. Despite this, they’ve also packed in a huge 4,000mAH battery.

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