Huawei P50 Pro review: the best again, but not in everything

Huawei doesn’t need to constantly prove that it can make flagship phones that will compete with phones from any other manufacturer. We’ve seen the company do this repeatedly with its Mate and P series flagships. Year after year, these smartphones have pushed the boundaries in terms of design, features, and mobile photography. This was especially true in relation to photographic capabilities and most of all related to the P series. The new Huawei P50 Pro continues in the same spirit and this is what it did.

Disadvantages of Huawei phones

The problem is related to the software part . Ever since the US banned Huawei from using Google services , the company has been working on building its own platform based on Android. It took her a lot of effort and time to convince app developers to post their work in their own AppGallery store, but now these efforts are paying off.

The app store has been heavily upgraded, but it is still difficult to replace Google Play . While major apps like Telegram, Yandex and TikTok are in the AppGallery, Instagram and WhatsApp are still missing from it.

However, software aside, with the P50 Pro the company has once again made an impressive gadget that can compete with the flagships of any leading manufacturer.

Huawei P50 Pro review

Huawei P50 Pro looks very cool . It is thin and light and it fits very comfortably in the hand. Premium in its body is literally felt with your fingertips. True, we have already gotten used to this appearance, because in fact we saw the same thing in Nova 9 and Honor 50 .

The P50 Pro’s performance is top notch thanks to the  Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor . The 8GB of RAM on offer isn’t the best in its class, but it’s enough to get the phone really fast, as Huawei phones aren’t that demanding on RAM.

Where the Huawei P50 Pro really stands out from the crowd is in photography, which is no surprise. Huawei has been at the forefront of mobile photography for a long time, especially with its P series. The main camera of the Huawei P50 Pro is capable of capturing great shots in all lighting conditions . However, I was a bit disappointed with the ultra-wide and telephoto lenses, which don’t deliver the same color reproduction as the main camera.

The battery capacity of the smartphone is not the largest (4360 mAh) we have seen, but it is enough to last through the day with moderate or even almost active use – the screen at 90% brightness can burn for about 7 hours. Huawei offers 66W fast wired charging and almost the same 50W fast wireless charging . It charges up to 75% by wire in 30 minutes, up to 100% in about 45-50 minutes. This speed can partly compensate for the lack of autonomy.

Buttons and connectors

Huawei P50 was announced for China last year, and now it has entered the international market . In fact, the choice of this or another device is determined only by the need for Google services. If they are not important, you can safely take the P50 Pro and not miscalculate.

Like most Huawei flagship phones in recent years, the volume buttons and power button are on the right, while the USB Type-C port and SIM tray are on the bottom. The speakers are located at the top and bottom, and the fingerprint sensor is located under the screen, which has curved edges that flow into a metal frame.

Huawei P50 Pro in Russia is sold in golden and black colors, although pearl white and pink are still available in the world. There are many fingerprints on the glass back. But there is a complete cover, which is not very typical for flagships. He can also hide the camera, which does not stick out very much.

Huawei P50 Pro screen

The screen of Huawei P50 Pro has a size of 6.6 inches , a resolution of 1228 x 2700 pixels and a pixel density of 450 pixels per inch . In comparison, the Samsung S21 Ultra is 1440 x 3200 and 515 ppi, while the iPhone 13 Pro Max is 1284 x 2778 and 458 ppi. There is a difference, but it is impossible to distinguish it by eye, unless special testing is carried out.

Color reproduction is excellent, and the OLED screen is well suited for watching movies and videos. Huawei has always had PWM, but then it became smaller, and the company separately spoke about this at the presentation. The refresh rate is 120Hz which makes the phone very smooth. There is a ‘dynamic’ mode to save power, or you can simply select 60Hz for continuous use.

Is the Huawei P50 Pro fast?

As mentioned above, the Huawei P50 Pro is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chipset found in most of last year’s flagship phones, but with one omission. It only comes with LTE/4G connectivity. The function of working in 5G networks is blocked, but so far this is not a big problem for Russia due to the lack of appropriate networks.

The chipset is combined with 8 GB of RAM and has from 128 GB to 512 GB of storage. The latest version also offers an increase in RAM up to 12 GB. There is support for Huawei Nano Memory (NM) cards. Although this format is not as popular as microSD cards, NM cards are the same shape and size as Nano SIM. So, when using a memory card, you will have to give up the second SIM card.

Best Huawei Camera

The Huawei P50 Pro features a two-round ledge that houses four Leica AI cameras. The main wide-angle camera is equipped with a 50MP sensor, which is paired with a 64MP periscope telephoto lens with 3.5x optical zoom, a 13MP ultra wide-angle lens, and a 40MP monochrome sensor. In the case of the latter, the company followed the path once used in the Huawei P9.

Given this hardware, it’s no surprise that the P50 Pro can take amazing pictures . Pictures are crisp, detailed and have a wide dynamic range. Even in low light, the sensors perform very well.

In the past, Huawei smartphones have been known to boost colors to make images look more vibrant and attractive. But with the P50 Pro, the image processing is such that colors, including all the important skin tones, look more believable . In addition, a special AI mode has been fine-tuned for realism, not decoration. The only problem is that the color rendering on different modules varies, but perhaps this will be corrected with the release of updates.

When it comes to shooting in low light, Huawei has always been at the forefront. But while the P50 Pro’s low-light images look impressive, they’re not as sharp as some of the competition lately. Yes, and the camera is a little late when creating such pictures. Over-wide in the dark, it shoots much worse than the main module, and in night mode it leads to the appearance of noise and aberrations.

The P50 Pro can record videos up to 4K at 60fps . Both the main lens and the telephoto lens have optical image stabilization (OIS), but there is no such support for the ultra wide angle lens . In addition, the ultra-wide lens is limited to 4K 30fps. And yes, when shooting video, the transition from one module to another is noticeable.

The P50 Pro has a single 13MP selfie camera on the front. Its quality is suitable for most common situations and for posting on social networks. As with the main camera, the selfie camera also supports a number of portrait mode options. One can’t help but notice that the front camera tends to beautify your face a little, even when beauty mode is turned off.

Huawei without HarmonyOS

Like all recent Huawei phones, the P50 Pro runs Android, but without Google services due to restrictions imposed by the US government. Interestingly, Huawei has decided to release the P50 Pro to international markets with EMUI , which is more of an Android 10 skin than HarmonyOS, a fork of Android but with its source code. In China, it is the second version that is offered to customers.

Huawei has put a lot of effort into getting app developers to port their apps to AppGallery, but there’s still room for improvement. There are some workarounds, but lately they have become so complicated that fewer even experienced users are willing to do it.

With EMUI 12, built on top of Android 10, Huawei has tweaked the user interface to make it look beautiful. The icons have been redesigned and the fonts look good. Interface tweaks, such as large folders on the home screen or accessing widgets with a long press on an app icon, help with day-to-day usability.

Should I buy a new Huawei

There are several indications or contraindications for buying a new Huawei P50 Pro.

Buy if:

  • Are you looking for a great phone with a great camera?
  • Are you satisfied with a flagship Android phone without Google
  • Do you have other Huawei devices and want good integration

Do not buy if:

  • Google services are important to you
  • Do you want to have 5G
  • Are you looking for an inexpensive phone

It’s up to you to decide, but this phone is really good, and if it weren’t for the sanctions, it would be the best again. Now he does it with some “buts”.

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