Huawei P20 Pro review

A real pro for photography

Huawei P20 Pro review
Image Credit: TechRadar

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The P20 Pro is something of a coup from Huawei. After banging on about AI for six months, this phone's camera proves it's not all marketing talk after all. It results in the best handheld ultra low light photos you can get from a phone.

Samsung offers a sharper screen, better brand cred and more power. However, we actually appreciate the Huawei P20 Pro's slightly better battery life and improved camera flexibility more most of the time.

It's a top-end phone with a price to match (although it's dropped a fair bit now), yet has everything needed in a world-class handset, including a very capable camera, plenty of power, great battery life and an impressive build.

To find out how the Huawei P20 Pro fared one month into use, watch the our verdict above.

Who's this for?

This phone is for those who want new and exciting tech but can’t quite stomach the price of a top-end iPhone XS or Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus

It's not cheap, far from it, but is still more affordable than those phones – and as the phone gets older, its price keeps dropping. The Huawei P20 Pro is also more interesting than Samsung’s latest, which is a big win for Huawei.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro

Image Credit: TechRadar

Should you buy it?

If you want great low light image quality you can get in a phone matched with near-unbeatable battery life in a phone of this size, the Huawei P20 Pro is absolutely worth a buy. 

You just need to be willing to trade away some brand prestige and a little software gloss here and there.

There are lots of other high-end options, including the following three phones:

Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus

Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus

The S9 family was not a high point for Samsung. These phones are fantastic, no doubt about that, but seem a little too similar to those of the year before.

The Galaxy S9 Plus is slightly more expensive than the P20 Pro, has a more powerful chipset and a sharper screen. It can also take better low light photos if you don't use the P20 Pro's dedicated night mode. 

Switch that on and the Huawei wins by quite a margin, though. The Huawei also has somewhat better battery life.

Read our full Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus review

iPhone XR

iPhone XR

Of the 2018 iPhones, it's the iPhone XR that's closest to the Huawei P20 Pro. You don't get quite as much camera trickery, but you do get a more polished software experience, and a phone that runs quicker overall.

If you don't need all the cool photography stuff (like the 3x optical zoom) and would rather focus on apps and performance, the iPhone XR might be worth a look. Oh, and it comes in some cool colors as well...

Read our full iPhone XR review

Huawei Mate 20 Pro

Huawei Mate 20 Pro

The Huawei Mate 20 Pro arrived a few months after the P20 Pro and is Huawei's new flagship, with a faster processor and another triple-lens camera. It costs more too, so it depends where you want to find the balance.

What we can say for sure is that the Huawei Mate 20 Pro is also a fantastic phone, so you've got a choice of price points when it comes to picking out some excellent Huawei hardware from 2018.

Read our full Huawei Mate 20 Pro review

First reviewed: April 2018

Andrew Williams

Andrew is a freelance journalist and has been writing and editing for some of the UK's top tech and lifestyle publications including TrustedReviews, Stuff, T3, TechRadar, Lifehacker and others.