With Apple, Google, Samsung and just about every other phone manufacturer launching a super-high-end flagship in 2017, there’s another phone to add to your upgrade shortlist: the Mate 10 Pro.
The Mate 10 is actually a range of phones, but it’s only the Pro version that we’ll get in the UK.
When is the Mate 10 Pro release date?
- The Mate 10 Pro is available to buy from today, 17 November.
How much does the Mate 10 Pro cost?
Rumours pegged the phone at around 940€, but it's actually £699 (799€). That's considerably cheaper than the Note 8, Google Pixel 2 XL and iPhone 8 Plus.
You can buy the grey model from Carphone Warehouse, where it's £48 per month with no upfront cost.
You can also get it from Vodafone where it's £46 per month (£10 upfront cost) which includes unlimited texts, unlimited minutes and 4GB of data.
And this means the Mate 10 Pro is going to be more tempting than all those phones if you're buying outright.
What are the Mate 10 Pro specs and features?
Huawei is keen to call the Mate 10 Pro an ‘intelligent machine’ rather than a smartphone. But while this is easy to dismiss as marketing fluff, the phone has an interesting processor.
Like all Huawei phones, this one uses a HiSilicon processor. HiSilicon is a Chinese chip manufacturer owned by Huawei, and the new Kirin 970 looks to be a beast.
Here are the main specs in a handy table:
|Huawei Mate 10 Pro|
|Operating system||Android Nougat 8.0 + EMUI 8.0|
|Screen||6.0in 2160x1080 touchscreen, 402ppi|
|Processor||2.4GHz HiSilicon Kirin 970 octa-core processor|
|Main camera(s)||12Mp, f/1.6 with OIS (colour) + 20Mp, f/1.6 (monochrome), support for 4K video at 30fps|
|Front camera||8Mp, f/2.0|
|Wi-Fi||802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi (2.4 and 5GHz)|
|GPS||GPS + Glonass|
|Cellular||4G LTE Cat.18|
|Charge and sync||USB-C SuperCharge|
|Dimensions||154.2mm x 74.5mm x 7.9mm|
|Colours||Midnight Blue, Titanium Gray, Pink Gold, Mocha Brown|
Beyond the usual specs, this chip has a built-in neural processor. It’s a bit like Apple’s A11 Bionic and what it means is that the Mate 10 Pro can do a lot of stuff offline that were previously only possible by using cloud services.
For example, the phone comes with a translation app from Microsoft. You point the camera at some text and the translation is done on the phone – no internet connection is required.
The smarts are also used to improve photography: each scene is quickly analysed and the appropriate mode selected. Then, photos can be automatically tagged (again without needing an internet connection) so you can search them by keying in “cat” or “motorbike”.
That in itself isn’t new: Apple and Google have offered this kind of categorisation and search for a while, but the fact that phone has the processing power do it itself (and remarkably quickly) is a real advantage.
As for the phone’s main specs, it has a 6in 18:9 OLED screen, dual speakers, USB-C and dual rear cameras. It’s a dual-SIM phone with 4G VoLTE support for both slots.
It’s also one of the first phones to support Cat18 LTE, which theoretically offers up to 1.2Gb/s download speeds, but you’re not going to be able to use that capability until UK operators roll out support on their side.
The Mate 10 Pro has 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, but unlike the standard Mate 10, no microSD slot. There's also another model with 64GB of storage and 4GB of RAM, but this won't be sold in the UK.
It’s the first Huawei phone that’s IP67 rated, which means it can survive being 1m underwater for 30 minutes.
Cameras follow what we’ve seen from Huawei before: a 12Mp + 20Mp pair at the rear, one colour and one monochrome. This time around they have fast f/1.6 lenses and retain the Leica branding.
The screen is slightly unusual in that it has a resolution of 2160x1080 – lower than some 18:9 screens out there. At 6in, it has a pixel density of 402ppi. That’s good, but not the best.
The phone ships with Android Oreo and EMUI 8.0. For more, read our review of the Mate 10 Pro.