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Huawei Mate 10 Pro Leica Dual Camera Review

Co-engineered with Leica, the Huawei Mate 10 Pro features dual Leica cameras, and Artificial Intelligence.

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Huawei Mate10 Pro With Leica (7)

The Huawei Mate 10 Pro is Huawei's top of the range flagship smartphone, not only does it feature dual Leica f/1.6 cameras with colour and black and white sensors, but also features a top of the range processor, that includes a "Neural Processing Unit" designed to speed up "Artificial Intelligence" (AI), for both smartphone and camera features. 

Huawei Mate 10 Pro Features

Huawei Mate10 Pro Leica Lenses (6)

The Huawei Mate 10 Pro is a large smartphone, thanks to a 6inch screen, and is designed to go head-to-head with other large smartphones, such as the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 (with 6.3inch screen and dual camera), Google Pixel 2 XL (with 6inch screen), and LG V30 (with 6inch screen and dual camera).

Huawei is listed as one of the top 10 technology companies on Wikipedia, making not just smartphones, but also network devices, and processors, with more revenue than Sony, as well as a higher number of employees. They have also reached 2nd and 3rd place in the mobile phone market, after Samsung.

The Huawei Mate 10 Pro dual camera is set up with a 12mp f/1.6 colour camera, and a 20mp f/1.6 black and white camera, both lenses equivalent to 27mm in 35mm terms. The main 12mp colour camera features optical image stabilisation, and there is prominent Leica branding next to the cameras on the back, as well as a Dual LED flash. The camera can record 4K (UHD) video, as well as high-speed video at 120fps at FullHD resolution.

Real-Time recognition - Huawei says the camera has been programmed to learn different scenes, and after analysing 100 million images, they can now automatically recognises 13 different scenes including Portrait, Flower, Plant, Low-light, Dog, Cat, Food, Blue sky, Nightscape, Sunset/Sunrise, Text, Beach, and Snow. The phone will then adjust colour, contrast, brightness, exposure, noise reduction and image sharpening to suit the scene. 

AI-Powered Bokeh effect - "Powered by AI to ‘learn’ from our data cache of portrait images, the HUAWEI Mate 10 Pro can seamlessly evoke a professional bokeh effect by shifting the focal point onto the subject of the photograph, for picture-perfect portraits and selfies."

The photography app gives you manual controls, and you can shoot raw images as well. There are numerous shooting modes available including Photo, Monochrome, Video, HDR, 3D panorama, Panorama, Night shot, Light Painting, Time-lapse, Slow-mo, Filter, Watermark, Document scan, and Good Food. You can download additional modes as they become available.

Underneath the cameras, you'll find the fingerprint sensor (which is on the front of the Mate 10), which can be used to unlock the smartphone. 

The 6inch OLED screen is an 18:9 display, with a 2160x1080 resolution, with HDR support, and minimal bezel on the left and right. The screen shows 16.7m colours and gives 112% NTSC colour saturation.

The phone is waterproof (IP67 rated) to 1m for 30 minutes, and features a glass front and back, so a case is recommended.

The phone features Huawei's fastest processor, the Kirin 970, with an 8-core CPU (Central Processing Unit), 12-core GPU (Graphics Processing Unit), as well as an NPU (Neural-Network Processing Unit). It's this last part, that the smartphone uses to give the camera "AI" or "Artificial Intelligence".

In fact, Huawei says they use AI for a number of camera features, including:

  • AI real-time objects and scene recognition (as detailed above)
  • AI-powered image resolution enhancement
  • AI-powered bokeh
  • AI selfie and AI-powered digital zoom
  • AI motion detection

You can connect the smartphone to a larger external screen, for a "full desktop experience" connecting a mouse and keyboard to your smartphone as well. 

The Mate 10 Pro is available with 4GB RAM + 64GB ROM, or 6GB RAM + 128GB ROM. Battery life is provided by a 4000mAh battery, with smart power management, and fast charging. The phone uses USB Type C, there is no headphone socket, instead providing an adapter in the box, as well as USB Type C earphones.

Huawei Mate10 Pro With Leica (8)

Key Features

  • Dual camera, 12mp RGB BSI CMOS sensor, 20mp monochrome
  • Leica f/1.6 lens (OIS on colour)
  • 4-in-1 Hybrid Focus, Laser, Depth, Contrast, Phase-detection
  • 15-16fps continuous shooting speed
  • 2x Huawei Hybrid Zoom 
  • 6inch FullHD+ 2160x1080 OLED HDR screen, 18:9 ratio, NTSC 112%
  • Gorilla Glass Front, Scratch resistant back
  • Dual Camera ISP
  • Dual LED Flash 
  • IP67 waterproof rating, 1m for 30 minutes
  • 4K UHD video recording
  • FullHD video at 60fps
  • High-speed FullHD video at 120fps
  • ISO50 to ISO3200
  • Wide-aperture mode (blurred background)
  • 6GB RAM, 128GB ROM
  • 4000mAh battery
  • Android 8.0 (Oreo)
  • Available in a range of colours

Huawei Mate 10 Pro Handling

Huawei Mate10 Pro With Leica (5)

The smartphone feels solidly built, although you will most likely want a screen protector and case to protect the glass on the front and back of the smartphone. The metal sides and buttons give a premium feel, adding to the solid design of the smartphone.

The fingerprint sensor is nicely recessed so that you can easily find it with your finger when needed, and the phone unlocks very quickly. There is no physical home button, as the screen uses most of the front, and the main buttons, such as the home button is on-screen, reducing the usable screen area.

Huawei Mate 10 Pro Camera Shooting Modes Huawei Mate 10 Pro Camera Pro Mode Huawei Mate 10 Pro Camera Settings
Camera Shooting Modes Pro Mode Camera Settings

In the camera app, you can swipe from left to right to access the shooting modes, from right to left, to access advanced settings. At the bottom, you can switch between playback, photo and video modes, and the middle button is the shutter release button. Pull up to access the "Pro" mode, where you can change camera settings.

At the top of the screen, there are shortcuts to flash, wide-aperture (bokeh), portrait, moving picture, colour (standard, vivid, smooth colours), and a shortcut to switch between the front and rear cameras. Pinching the screen lets you use the hybrid zoom. You can use the screen to set the focus position, as well as adjust exposure. 

You can quickly get to the camera by double pressing the down volume button. Once in the camera app, you can also use this button to take photos.

The nice thing about all of the "AI" technology in the phone, is that you don't really need to think about it when shooting. You simply use the camera, and features on offer, as and when you need them, without having to worry about it. 

Huawei Mate10 Pro With Leica (6)

The screen looks good, and is bright, making it good outdoors, although occasionally slightly "cool" in colour compared to some other smartphones - this can be adjusted using the "Eye comfort" setting, which gives the screen a warmer tone. Viewing angles are very good until you point the phone away from yourself.

We ran a number of benchmarks to see how the Huawei Mate 10 Pro compared to some other premium smartphones:

AnTuTu: 174783 score.
Geekbench: 1881 (single core) 6674 (multi-core).

The AnTuTu score is the highest we've recorded, beating both the HTC U11, and Samsung Galaxy S8, but not by a massive amount. The phone feels quick in use, and the camera is responsive with both fast focus speeds and shutter response. If you hold the on-screen shutter release button, then you can shoot at roughly 15fps, for up to 100 shots.

Huawei Mate10 Pro With Leica (9)

Battery life - Battery life is good, with the smartphone featuring an impressive 4000mAh battery. Battery management means this should last a good length of time. As the battery is non-removable, you will need to use an external charger, if you run out of power on the move.

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