Huawei has finally dropped its latest smartphones, the P30 and P30 Pro, after much anticipation built up from rumours, leaks and teaser trailers.
Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei, said on-stage that the devices are ‘inspired by nature’ and designed to let people take the best pictures possible.
Huawei has equipped the handsets with three or four cameras, depending on the model, to increase light and picture quality, it claims.
The presentation in Paris included a range of images taken on the P30 Pro and the same images taken on competitors, the iPhone XS Max and the Samsung S10 Plus, showing its claimed superiority in areas of low light.
The Chinese firm announced its ‘compact’ devices with a bigger battery as it continues its bid to overtake is Samsung as the biggest mobile phone maker in the world.
Customers in the UK can pre-order the devices which will be stocked by EE and will cost £39 per month for the P30 and the Pro will be available from £49 (estimated R941) per month.
The launch takes place amid ongoing security concerns over alleged links between the firm and the Chinese state – something Huawei has always denied – and how its global position could be exploited for Chinese intelligence purposes.
Richard Yu said on stage that the Chinese giant is leading the way with advancements in photography, AI, battery, connectivity and interaction.
He announced that the firm wants to pursue photography and make the ‘best selfie possible’.
The P30 comes with a SuperSensing 40MP Lecia Triple Camera arrangement which consists of a 8MP telephoto, 16MP ultra-wide, and 40MP wide-angle lens.
Its P30 Pro handset, however, comes with a four camera setup made of a 20MP ultra-wide, 40MP wide-angle, 8MP 5X telephoto and a depth-sensing lens.
The company has made AI a key feature in its devices, allowing mobile phone users to access AI with one press of the power button.
Both handsets are equipped with a 32MP front-facing selfie camera.
Mr Yu also announced a host of impressive features, including an incredible digital zoom of up to 50x on the Pro and 10x on the P30 standard model.
They come with super slimline bezels, with the P30 equipped with a 6.1-inch display and the Pro has a 6.47 inch display.
This helps make them slimmer than many competitors, including the iPhone XR and XS.
The P30 comes with a 3,650mAh battery and its big brother is equipped with a hefty 4,200mAh power bank.
The handsets were unveiled to the crowd with a range of colours, including: Amber Sunrise, Pearl White, Black, Aurora and Blue Crystal.
Huawei’s self-developed artificial intelligence (AI) systems are also a central part of the new devices.
The P30 can share content with the Huawei laptop with one tap of the phone on the laptop.
Industry experts have offered a mixed response to Huawei’s new P30 Series of smartphones, praising the technology but warning the firm is still not appealing enough to phone buyers.
Ru Bhikha, mobiles expert at uSwitch.com, said the phones are an appealing package but questions remain about how much of an upgrade on last year’s devices they offer.
‘Despite continuing to face an uphill battle in the media, Huawei’s handsets and wider tech enterprises continue to garner praise on a global scale, having overtaken Apple in late 2018 to now hold the accolade of the second biggest market share in the UK,’ he said.
‘Its improved zoom camera – coupled with excellent low-light functionality – as well as support for 40W rapid charging on the P30 Pro and flat-cut surfaces on top and bottom, for tripod-free shots, are likely to appeal to consumers as unexpected, but remarkably effective, design flourishes.
‘Having said that, the question stands as to whether these developments will justify, in the eyes of the consumer, enough of a step up from the P20 to shake off the mounting indifference towards smartphone upgrades.’
Thomas Husson, from analyst firm Forrester, agreed that Huawei still had work to do to be seen as a must-have brand like some of its rivals.
‘With the Huawei P30 and P30 Pro, Huawei demonstrates strong technology innovation leadership by delivering a best-in-class, AI-driven photography experience,’ he said
‘To truly move away from a challenger mindset and steal more market share from Samsung, Huawei must continue to build a stronger brand personality.
‘Huawei needs stronger marketing execution and brand partnerships to firmly establish itself as a smartphone brand leader in Europe.’
The company previously published promotional images of new earbuds called Huawei Freelace on Twitter that comes in a number of different colours.
Huawei’s launch comes at a time of increased scrutiny around the Chinese company, as it continues to face questions over its involvement in mobile infrastructure.
Of particular concerns is the firm’s position as a leader in 5G technology, which will begin to roll out globally this year.
The announcement comes a month after rivals Samsung unveiled their new flagship Galaxy S10 handsets.