Huawei Mate 8 Review
Interface and Functionality
EMUI 4.0 goes back to that ‘more is better’ strategy, but it can come off disorganized.
Rather than rehashing in detail again, we’ll just cut to the point and say that the Mate 8 is running the newer EMUI 4.0 skin on top of Android 6.0 Marshmallow. Having the latest build of Android is great news for fanatics, but the underlying custom skin still prides itself in being one of the most feature-filled experiences out there. That’s a good or bad thing depending on who you talk to, however, even with Huawei’s best efforts, we’re inclined to say that it’s still a smidgen behind Samsung and LG’s interpretations.
Visually, the interface is skinned in all the appropriate areas, like the dialer and calendar. Functionally, it bears a wealth of features that adhere to power users, such as its one-handed mode, side-by-side multi-tasking, and gesture (knuckle) controls, but they’re not as refined as we’d like. For example, the side-by-side multi-tasking is limited to only a handful of native apps – far from the more diversified support we find in TouchWiz.
While the core functions of Android are present, EMUI 4.0 attempts to be the mega Android experience with its set of exorbitant features, but the end result lacks cohesiveness and a clear direction.
The Kirin 950 is a benchmark trailblazer.
If this is any indication of what’s on the horizon, then Huawei is shaping up to be a formidable force because its home-brewed 64-bit Kirin 950 SoC delivers impressive results with the Mate 8. Our particular review sample features 3GB of RAM, but there’s another model with 4GB. Either way, the benchmark scores are off the roof!
In reality, the processing power propels every action to be accompanied with a pleasant level of responsiveness, but we wouldn’t say it’s as tight as the Nexus 6P’s performance with stock Android. Still, it continues to impress with its better-than-average graphics processing performance.
Accompanied with 32GB of internal storage, while the other variant comes with 64GB, we can all sleep knowing it’s not going to be an issue because there’s room for expansion courtesy of its microSD slot.