Huawei’s P series has always been focused on photography so it comes as no surprise that the Huawei P40 series is once again, all about the camera. The P40 series devices have even been designed to be held in landscape format and they’re made to look and feel camera-esque. But new for 2020 is its quad-curved overflow display with a full edge-to-edge design that has a curvature along the edges. Huawei says that the design is inspired by the surface tension of water – specifically, it’s like a cup of water where the water is almost overflowing.
This time the P40 series will be available in 3 models: A P40 model with a 6.1-inch display, and a P40 Pro and P40 Pro + model that both have 6.58-inch 90mhz displays. Huawei has improved the in-screen fingerprint reader by increasing its sensory area by 30%. The device now offers a faster face unlock in low light and both the P40 Pro and P40 Pro+ are IP68 rated.
When it comes to color choices, the P series has been a trailblazer, being amongst the first phones to offer stunning gradients. The P40 and P40 Pro models will be available in a choice of ice white, black and deep-sea blue, all of which are reflective with sport gradients. Plus, there are two new colors: Silver frost and blush gold. Both of these have a new fingerprint-resistant finish which we’re especially excited about. At the high-end of the range, the Huawei P40 Pro+ has a ceramic material for its backing and it’s available in a choice of ceramic white or black.
Circling back to the device’s optics, the P40 series offers the world’s largest CMOS sensor, a 1/1.28-inch sensor, along with the world’s first dual optical tele-camera system that includes a 3X optical telephoto lens + a 10x optical telephoto zoom lens (a super periscope lens design) with advanced telephoto stabilization. In particular, the P40 Pro+ offers the same superzoom as the P30 Pro but adds an RYYB sensor to it. The phone also packs in a 16MP ultra wide-angle lens. The Pro models are able to record 7680fps ultra slow motion and can even capture 4K time-lapse video.
The front-facing camera on the P40 Pro/ Pro+ is also very impressive. It’s a 32mp dual front camera with autofocus. It’s also able to record 4K video at 60fps and take natural bokeh selfies.
Under the hood, the P40 Series is powered by a Kirin 990 chipset. The new 990 chipset offers a 23% faster CPU, and a 39% faster GPU over is predecessor. When it comes to 5G, the P40 offers 5G support on both sims. The phone also supports WiFi 6 plus. As for battery life, the P40 comes with a 3,000 mAh battery, while the P40 Pro and P40 Pro+ come with a 4,200 mAh battery and super fast 40w wired charging, as well as super fast 40w wireless charging.
On the software front, the P40 series comes running EMUI 10.1. EMUI 10.1 brings some notable new features with it, including MeeTime which promises high-quality audio and video even when network bandwidth is poor. Huawei says video calls are supported up to 1080P and that MeeTime’s low light call quality is better than FaceTime and Google Duo. MeeTime is also able to change your background while you’re on a call.
Huawei is also introducing a new voice assistant called Celia with the P40 series. Just say “Hey, Celia” or hold the power button for 1 second and she’ll become available to help you perform tasks like making calls, checking the weather, and performing typical voice assistant tasks. Initially, Celia will support UK English, French, and Spanish. Support for additional languages and additional Huawei devices is in the works.
On paper, the P40 series seems like a solid evolutionary update. But specs aren’t everything – real-world performance is what matters. It really remains to be seen if the P40 can compete as well in 2020 as it has in the past. Even Apple has recently caught up when it comes to camera performance, so the competition in 2020 is certainly tougher than ever before.
The Huawei P40 will retail for €799, the P40 Pro for €999 and the P40 Pro+ for €1399.