The Huawei P30 Lite is a good phone. It looks striking, has a decent screen and the camera is versatile too. With middling power though, and good, but not great battery life, all combined with a lofty price tag, it isn’t quite a no-brainer.
Mediocre battery life
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Huawei’s 'Lite' versions of its flagships have been hit and miss in the last year. Often undercut by comparably spec'd Honor phones, not to mention low-end alternatives from the likes of Xiaomi, they’re always good, but are often too pricey to be easy to recommend.
When it comes to the Huawei P30 Lite, its main competition comes from the cheaper Moto G7 Plus and even the likes of the Redmi Note 7, which comes in at just £185 (around $230/AU$340). That was upon launch, but over a year later, there are plenty more cheap phones that have similar or better specs than the P30 Lite.
Where the P30 Lite stands out is when it comes to design - its iridescent back panel is attention-grabbing in a great way, thanks to a wave pattern that grabs, bends and plays with light beautifully.
The 128GB storage capacity is also a boon for the phone, as too is its triple-lens camera, which features a wide, ultra-wide and depth sensor combo.
Its 4GB of RAM may put it on par with flagships like the Google Pixel 3, but mid-rangers like the Realme 3 Pro are clocking in at up to 6GB. As for its 3,340mAh battery, it’s respectably sized, but definitely isn’t the biggest on the block.
Huawei P30 Lite price and availability
- Available in the UK, UAE and India
- Out now
- £329 (roughly $300, AU$415) SIM-free
The Huawei P30 Lite is the cheapest device in the P30 range and is available in the UK, India, and the UAE.
It will set you back £329 (AED 1,099, roughly $300, AU$415). While less expensive than the Huawei P30 and Huawei P30 Pro, therefore, its pricing is a level up from the likes of the Huawei P Smart (2019).
That was its price at launch, but the cost quickly dropped with subsequent phone launches in the Huawei P and other series from the company.
It’s available now at Carphone Warehouse SIM-free, or through Vodafone on contract.
- Big, sharp screen
- Sleek build and lots of storage
- Triple-lens camera
At 6.15 inches, the Huawei P30 Lite's screen is roughly the same size as that of the vanilla P30, and it sports roughly the same Full HD+ resolution too. What it doesn’t pack is AMOLED screen tech though, with an LTPS LCD panel taking center stage.
The 4GB of RAM under the hood doesn’t set off any alarm bells, though the Kirin 710 chipset has shipped in significantly cheaper smartphones, including the Honor 10 Lite and the Huawei P Smart (2019).
Despite this, there’s an ample 128GB of storage, and the sleek finish and incredibly vibrant color options are bound to impress.
Running Android 9, the operating system is as up to date as we could hope for, with Huawei’s skin, EMUI 9, over the top. This means interaction is all about gestures, similar to those introduced on the iPhone X, and there are customizations aplenty if you fancy a deep dive into the settings.
The P30 Lite is seriously slender at 7.4mm thick. It also fits great in the hand with its curved glass back, and the Full HD+ screen has an aspect ratio of 19.5:9, so it’s longer than your average phone.
Just like the Redmi Note 7, it features a 48MP primary camera too, with its triple camera setup sporting a depth sensor and an ultra-wide angle lens alongside that main one.
Meanwhile, the battery is a competent, not class leading 3,340mAh.
- Slim and elegant
- Plastic frame
- Rear fingerprint scanner
Huawei’s P30 Lite marries accessible size and a bold styling.
With its 6.15-inch screen, the phone is going to be much better suited to small hands than the likes of the OnePlus 7 and Huawei P30 Pro, but it still delivers a rich, flagship-esque in-hand feel.
The P30 Lite’s frame may be plastic, but it looks and feels solid, emulating the metal of the rest of the P30 family nicely. The front is flat glass with minimal bezels on the fascia, and the back has a slight, elegant curve to it.
The back also houses the phone’s fingerprint scanner and triple camera module. At the base is the USB-C port, while all the buttons are located on the phone’s right-hand side. Audiophiles – rejoice – there’s a 3.5mm headphone jack onboard, however next to it is a very-easy-to-cover-up mono speaker.
At 7.4mm thick and weighing just 159g, the Huawei P30 Lite is indeed light, not to mention slender and comfortable to hold. Its dual-SIM tray slot is on the top, and the phone can take two nano SIM cards, or one SIM card and a microSD card.
The P30 Lite is also available in three colors: Peacock Blue, Midnight Black and Pearl White - all with the same glass finish. We reviewed the blue one and boy is it deserving of its namesake – it peacocks full-on plumage-like iridescence from every angle. If subtlety is more your thing though, black is always a safe bet.
As for the fingerprint scanner, it’s in a natural position for an index finger to fumble over. Meanwhile, the right-hand buttons are easy to press, and ultimately, from a design point of view, everything works well.
- 19.5:9 LCD screen with notch
- 6.15 inches with 84.2% screen-to-body ratio
- Full HD+ resolution, 415 PPI
The Huawei P30 Lite’s Full HD+ display measures 6.15 inches, which is an excellent size - balancing immersion and manageability like a champ. It’s a long screen thanks to its 19.5:9 aspect ratio, and it’s light on bezels too, with a water droplet notch at the top, housing the selfie camera, as found on the Honor 10 Lite.
With a resolution of 1080 x 2312, its screen is exactly what we’d expect at the price, retaining the Full HD+ resolution found in the flagship P30 Pro, but swapping out its AMOLED screen tech for something a bit less pricey - LCD.
LCD screens generally showcase less depth, punch and pop than AMOLEDs, but also deliver ever so slightly better clarity.
Thankfully, the P30 Lite’s display is a good one. Viewing angles are strong, as too are brightness levels, and with a pixel density of 415 pixels per inch – bettering the pricier iPhone XR, it’s sharp too.
When it comes to color accuracy and white balance, the default display calibration has a marked blue tinge to it. There are display calibration settings, not to mention a blue light filter, so between the two you can temper its hues to suit your tastes.
The notch can also be hidden if you’re not a fan, and ultimately, while it definitely isn’t best-in-class, the P30 Lite’s screen looks great.
Basil Kronfli is the Head of content at Make Honey and freelance technology journalist. He is an experienced writer and producer and is skilled in video production, and runs the technology YouTube channel TechEdit.