Huawei Mate 10 Pro Review
Interface and functionality
Skipping a few software version numbers, what we get here with the Mate 10 Pro is Huawei's Emotion UI 8.0 experience running on top of Android 8.0 Oreo. Visually, EMUI 8.0 is a drastic departure from the style and aesthetics of previous iterations. Customization is available in nearly every aspect of the interface. From the customizable floating navigation dock, to leveraging the fingerprint sensor to pull down the notifications panel, there's a ton to enhance the experience to your liking.
Huawei talks big about the phone's real-time on-device AI, which leverages the power of the Kirin 970 chipset to form a dedicated "NPU" (Neural Network Processing Unit). At first, we believed that most of this AI-driven experience would be something tangible, much like Samsung's Bixby, but they're more behind-the-scenes stuff. Essentially, this neural processing unit endows the Mate 10 Pro to possess a real-time vision engine, language understanding, effective power management, and much more!
Most of the features are nothing new, like its knuckle gestures and one-handed UI, but rather, they've been enhanced to some degree. Some of the new things we appreciate with EMUI 8.0 is PrivateSpace, which creates a second user account, but can only be accessed by a specific fingerprint. Therefore, if your left index finger is associated with your main account, you can create this "private" account and access it with your right index finger.
What's most compelling, though, has to be "Projection" mode! Similar in premise to Samsung's DeX, wherein the phone can be tethered to a monitor/display to offer a desktop-like experience. In addition, you can pair a Bluetooth mouse and keyboard to complete the experience. But best of all, you don’t need a special dock for those! Instead, all you need is a USB Type-C to HDMI adapter – and nothing more! Our only minor complain about Projection is that the phone needs to remain on in order for it to work, so you can't turn off the display to preserve power.
Processor and performance
Introduced officially back during IFA 2017, Huawei's octa-core Kirin 970 chipset, which breaks down to 4 Cortex A73 cores running at 2.36 GHz and another 4 Cortex A53 cores at 1.8 GHz, the Mate 10 Pro surely runs smoothly as expected. Basic operation performance is on par to other high-caliber smartphones in its class, so we're pleased by the results here.
Our particular unit is paired with 6 GB of RAM, which is more than plenty to handle even the most processor-intensive operations. For gaming specifically, the Mate 10 Pro is more than capable in consistently delivering smooth frame rates with little lag. If you're passionate about gaming, you'll dig the kind of fluid responses it has to offer.
Our unit has the plentiful 128 GB of storage, while the model below it is equipped with 64 GB of storage (and 4GB of RAM). Sadly, there's no storage expansion here, so if you intend on shooting a ton of photos and 4K videos, it'd be a smart idea to go with the larger capacity of the two.