Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

The smartphone throne is further away than ever. But Huawei is not thinking of giving up. With the P50 Pro, the Chinese manufacturer wants to prove it to everyone once again. With a high price, without 5G or Google.

The smartphones from the manufacturer Huawei are characterized by very good equipment at a reasonable price. Especially the cameras make other competitors look weak. Customers are satisfied and increasingly turn their backs on Samsung and other Android manufacturers. Then the caesura by Donald Trump – and nothing is as it was. For Huawei as well as for the customers themselves.

Review May 2019: Huawei is on the verge of overtaking Samsung after more than a decade and taking the smartphone throne. But then the then U.S. President Donald Trump pronounces a trade ban and prohibits U.S. companies from any cooperation with Huawei. Suddenly, the company is locked out: From Google’s Android and the Google Mobile Services (Gmail, Maps, Play Store, etc) deeply embedded in it.), but also from Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp. Apps that have been leading the popularity rankings in all available app stores for years. The smartphone sales figures are rapidly going downhill. Now, more than two years later, Huawei has managed to get an OS up and running and come up with an acceptable, if not super-elegant, solution to the Facebook-Instagram-WhatsApp-GoogleMaps problem.

With the P50 Pro, Huawei wants to show what makes it tick as a smartphone manufacturer: design, camera(s), and the installed hardware. But even after two years, there are still problems with the software. Even though a lot had already been done, Huawei still has to catch up.

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

The outer values

Before we turn to the software topic, it is, as with every new top model, about the looks. What is already noticeable when unpacking: The Huawei P50 Pro is pleasantly light. While the iPhone 13 Pro Max weighs in at 240 grams, the P50 Pro weighs only 195 grams. It is also pleasantly slim with a width of 7.2 centimeters and not too high at 15.8 centimeters. It feels good in the hand and thanks to the included plastic case, it is also well protected from the start. And as slippery as the little guy is, also urgently necessary. In addition, and this is not new knowledge, these high-gloss coatings are true magnets for dirt, smudges and fingerprints. Constantly cleaning a cell phone to keep it looking nice is no fun. There is definitely a point deduction for this.

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

The power button and the volume control are on the right side.   (c) The press/Barbara Steinbrenner

Speaking of the back: The camera on the back, once again the heart of a top smartphone. Even if you start to wonder how many cameras a phone still needs to have: Huawei has managed to install quite a few without giving the impression of overloading the back. The two portholes also protrude on the back, but much less than on the rivals. In combination with the casing, the device does not look beefy.

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

The portholes up close (c) Die Presse/Barbara Steinbrenner

In the top circle is a 13-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera (13mm;f/2.2), with a 40-megapixel "True Chrome camera" underneath For improved black and white shots (26mm; f/1.6). A 50 megapixel camera rounds off the first set. Underneath is a 64-megapixel telephoto camera with 3.5x optical zoom and an optical image stabilizer (f/3.5). Of course, the digital zoom can be used to get a much closer look at the object of desire from a distance. Up to hundredfold zoom is possible, but not necessary and does not bring usable results without a tripod and a lot of patience and is therefore nice on the list of technical equipment, but negligible in practice.

Huawei fulfills the high expectations for the camera in a first test. The picture quality in low light conditions is very good and even poor photographers (like the author of this text) manage to take good and appealing pictures. What humans can’t do is partly done by artificial intelligence.

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

Sad tulips, or tulips from the genus "weeping willow tulips".   (c) The press/Barbara Steinbrenner

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

Here in the zoom. The 100x zoom is also available. To use it is just as little as with Samsung.   (c) The Press/Barbara Steinbrenner

Switching on – bloatware as far as the eye can see

Without Google’s Play Store, Huawei was suddenly empty-handed in 2019. No app from the USA could be installed easily. This problem has now been partially solved. Yes, it takes a few more clicks to get Instagram, WhatsApp or even Google Maps on your phone, but here the system guides you through quite well. But with the Huawei P50 Pro, the manufacturer has probably tried to show what it already has in its own store. This is how setting up begins with cleaning out. While Samsung and the former smartphone manufacturer LG were the frontrunners in pre-installed apps, Huawei has gone one better: Folders for games, business, social media, lifestyle are pre-installed and mostly contain hardly anything useful. At each step of the setup, Huawei wants to load a few more apps on top of it. Here it would have been better to present itself in discreet restraint. A fresh and clean system and during setup, maybe the hint: "You might also be interested in this".

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

Do all these folders really have to be there? Cleaning out the new cell phone, but it doesn’t work without it.   (c) The Press/Barbara Steinbrenner

In a way, it is understandable that Huawei wants to show who it couldn’t get to cooperate with it. But a hint is enough. A total of 22 gigabytes are occupied by software and the hodgepodge of apps. Setting up therefore takes longer than usual.

Once you have cleaned up your phone, it’s time to personalize it and install your own apps. Here you can search directly via Huawei’s App Store. We have illustrated this with Google Maps in six steps and pictures.

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

The installation of US apps like Google Maps is not possible via the store. You still have to accept cutbacks here. Huawei tries to make this easier from version to version. Let’s start with the search in Huawei’s App Store. Under Petal Search, the app is immediately displayed with the familiar logo.   (c) The Press/Barbara Steinbrenner

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

Promptly follows the hint that we remove ourselves from the AppGallery. Well, there’s no other way.   (c) The press/Barbara Steinbrenner

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

Then the question of whether we really want to download. We want? Clear! However, this is really only recommended for apps that you know!   (c) The Press/Barbara Steinbrenner

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

In the next step, the download progress is displayed and advertising.   (c) The Press/Barbara Steinbrenner

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

Then you are asked again if you are really, really sure though. Like once at the Millionenshow under Reinhard Fendrich. So once again we say, yes we do.   (c) The press/Barbara Steinbrenner

Huawei p50 pro: why good hardware is not enough

And six clicks and less than a minute later, the confirmation: We have Google Maps on our phone and despite all the security warnings and risk notices, the app is also scanned again by Huawei during the download. (But they could also tell you that beforehand) (c) Die Presse/Barbara Steinbrenner

Thanks to the Snapdragon 888 processor, the Adreno 660 and the eight gigabytes of RAM, everything runs smoothly. It is only interesting that Huawei does not jump on the current marketing bandwagon 5G here. The question remained unanswered until the publication of this report. It is not to be assumed that Huawei as a network supplier no longer thinks anything of 5G. Rather, the lack of semiconductor processors seems to be the reason.

And otherwise?

The built-in screen offers a refresh rate of 120 Hz – a gold standard in this category by now, even if Apple isn’t impressed by it. Reading long content is thus much more pleasant.

The fingerprint scanner is installed underneath the display and can be set up quickly. The recognition in practice works well and is much more convenient than securing the device via Face ID. Because with a mask, this is still an unsolvable task.

This brings us to the price: At 1199 euro, the Huawei P50 Pro is in the upper league. It will go on sale in mid-February and will be available in gold and black colors.

Conclusion: If Huawei were to take a similarly aggressive tactic with the price as with the apps, the P50 Pro would be worth a recommendation. But when it comes to value for money, customers are simply asked to pay too much. Installing certain apps still means a certain amount of effort. The fact that a dewy device has to be cleaned up first is annoying and no longer corresponds to the state of the art. Bloatware has no place on a cell phone, regardless of Huawei’s fate. In addition, it acts without 5G old.

But the Chinese manufacturer shows that an Android smartphone doesn’t necessarily need Google to survive. Microsoft, BlackBerry and many others have failed with their own software. But Huawei has not yet reached the top again. But not much is missing.

Like this post? Please share to your friends:
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!: