Huawei Mate 20 X 5G Full Review – Stunning Phone, High Price
With 5G finally upon us, the time get a 5G phone is fast approaching. But does the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G really live up to the highest expectations? Should you buy it?
The pace of smartphone development has been pretty crazy in recent years. In fact, 2019 has been arguably the biggest year for mobile technology since the release of the first iPhone. This isn’t just because we’ve seen some nice handsets release this year (we get that every year). It’s because 5G has finally come to the world, and while it isn’t being released all over as of yet, it’s in some places already and it will hit the rest of the world in the next couple of years.
With the dawn of 5G, mobile technology is in for a big change. The potential to use your phone to interact with the world – and all the devices in it – around you is now huge. But to make the most of the big 5G rollout, you’ll need a phone that can support the technology – as well as a massive wod of cash lying around to buy one with.
In this post, we’ll look at Huawei’s new Mate 20 X 5G which goes on sale in the UK and Europe this week. This is the first 5G phone that Huawei has launched in the UK and comes in the wake of the US/China trade war and the subsequent Huawei ban and Google suspension that has come along with it.
Huawei Mate 20 X 5G
First of all, we should mention that this is a stunning phone in both design and internal capabilities. The Mate 20 X is no stranger to the shelves in phone shops – it’s been out for some time now and we even have the Mate 30 Pro on the way, too. Huawei’s upgrades to the phone have been significant since the release of the original handset, however – with 5G and enhanced performance coming in the new device.
If you were planning on buying a 5G phone sometime soon, then you could do a lot worse than this. The Huawei Mate 20 X 5G has the specs of a workhorse, with a Kirin 980 chipset and lots of RAM and internal storage. It also has a solid 40MP camera, among other lenses, and of course, 5G connection speeds. The downside is that it costs around $1,200 and isn’t available in the US. In the UK, you’ll be paying £999.
The phone is a sleek thing to behold. It has a whopping 7.2-inch AMOLED screen, making it a true phablet. On top of that, most of this screen is totally reserved for the display. It has very small bezels and a stylish teardrop-style front facing camera.
On the rear of the device is a very stylish ‘hyper optical’ glass casing. This certainly gives the phone a premium look and feel, which is appropriate given that it is one of the most premium phones that money can buy at the moment.
The phone comes with a fair bit of protection, too, including a gorilla glass screen fitted with a screen protector when you buy it. This is helpful just in case you, y’know, drop it. While the phone can actually take more damage than an iPhone would as a result of this, it’s probably still a good idea to get a case for that added protection.
The rear camera on the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G is pretty decent when stacked up to other 5G phones. It comes with a 40MP camera, as well as a 20MP ultra-wide angle lens and an 8MP telephoto lens. It takes great portrait shots and is really effective at focusing in on objects in the foreground while blurring the background.
The camera can take great shots at night, which is actually something that the competition hasn’t been able to perform as well at, and leads on from the Huawei P30 Pro’s excellent night mode performance. That being said, the camera isn’t perfect, with the AI sometimes making shots a little too saturated – still, you can just turn the AI scene recognizer off. Simples.
On the front of the device is a 24MP selfie camera which is capable of taking some pretty decent front-facing shots. If you’re a selfieholic, then you won’t be disappointed by Mate 20 X 5G when it comes to photo capability – either with front facing shots or your general memory capturing, especially when you let the device use all 40 megapixels in your photos. It’s a lot to behold – and it will make good use of all that internal storage that the phone can hold.
Mate 20 X 5G Specs
Aside from just being a pretty face, the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G has the smarts to back it up and turn it into a truly formidable smartphone. This isn’t just because of the 5G support. The Mate 20 X 5G has included 2GB more RAM than the standard Mate 20 X had, and is powered by the formidable Kirin 980 chipset from Huawei. It isn’t their latest (the Kirin 990) but it’s only one step behind and it’s still extremely powerful.
With 8GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage as standard, plus other cool features like 3D facial recognition for unlocking the phone and super-fast charging meaning that you can fully replenish the phone in just an hour, this certainly a formidable phone. It comes with a downgraded battery over the original – at 4,200mAh, which is still a big ass battery – still, it’s not as good as the 5,000mAh battery that we saw on the original.
Of course, the big new feature is 5G support, which will come in very handy in the next year and beyond as the next generation of mobile connection is unleashed across the world.
To Google, or Not to Google
Given that Huawei is still banned in the US and has been suspended from future Android updates, as well as access to the Play Store and other essential Google services, there are massive questions about how useful these phones will be in the future. It could mean that Huawei’s HarmonyOS gets put to mobile use, or it could simply be that the current US president leaves the White House in 2020 and the next one lifts the ban. Either way, for now at least, Huawei is hampered on the Google front.