The Huawei P20 and Honor 10 smartphones are the latest additions to a really strong lineup from both companies.
On the face of it, these two smartphones look incredibly similar, and have impressive specs to match. But what are the main differences and similarities between these phones? Here, we investigate.
Who are Huawei and Honor?
Huawei was established in 1987 and was originally a phone switches manufacturer. It has since branched out to provide telecommunications services to the consumer market, and in 2017 it overtook Apple to become the second largest phone manufacturer in the world. It’s a strong player in the smartphone market and the P20, with its collaboration with Leica for the optics of the camera, brings it into the premium leagues in terms of smartphone photography.
Honor is a subsidiary of Huawei. It came to prominence in 2013 and in 2014, the Honor 6 smartphone was released in Europe. With the Honor 10, Honor is aiming to attract the younger, more tech-savvy generation, with the funky colours and design. Huawei’s phones continue to be marketed at the more professional, slightly older market.
The Huawei P20 is part of a larger family comprising of the P20 Pro which ePHOTOzine has already reviewed, and the P20 lite. The P20 and the Honor 10 use AI to understand the subject of your photo – for example it can recognise when you point the camera at greenery, flowers, a person or a pet and adjust modes accordingly.
The Honor 10 doesn’t have the Leica name attached to it – but the cameras still boast impressive numbers.
|Spec||Huawei P20||Honor 10|
|Camera 1||3rd Gen Leica dual camera, Big Pixel 12MP RGB f/1.8||16MP f/1.8|
|Camera 2||3rd Gen Leica dual Camera, 20MP BW f/1.6||24MP BW f/1.8|
|Selfie camera||24MP f/2.0||24MP f/2.0|
|Processor||HUAWEI Kirin 970 Frequency: 4×2.36GHz (Cortex A73), 4×1.8GHz (Cortex A53)||HiSilicon Kirin 970 4×2.4 GHz Cortex-A73 & 4×1.8 GHz Cortex-A53|
|Memory/RAM||4GB RAM, 128GB storage||4GB RAM, 128GB storage|
|Screen size||5.8 inch 2244×1080 pixels||5.8 inch 2280x1080pixels|
|Battery life||3400 mAh||3400 mAh|
|Operating system||Android 8.1||Android 8.1|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC, USB Type C||W-Fi. Bluetooth, NFC, USB Type C|
|Weight||165g including battery||153g including battery|
As you can see, both phones have the same screen size, processor power, battery and functionality. (Hisilicon is also a subsidiary of Huawei so is basically the same kit.) Where things do vary slightly is in the 2 rear camera offerings, with the Huawei offering a wider aperture on the BW camera.
Both phones have the same body shape and same thickness, with the Honor 10 having slightly more bevelled edges, to give an overall slimmer look. Both have volume and on/off switches on the right-hand side and sim/memory card access on the left. Fingerprint sensors are located at the bottom of the screen, which both also serve as a ‘home button. The Huawei offering has a lined, pronounced edge whereas the Honor offering is simply outlined with dots.
The main difference in the design is the lack of a headphone jack on the Huawei P20 – the Honor has a jack on the bottom along with the speakers. The Honor phone also features more in the way of sensors, featuring a gravity sensor, ambient light sensor, proximity sensor, gyroscope and compass.
Both are available in attractive colours – the Huawei P20 can be bought in black, midnight blue or pink gold. The Honor 10 is available in iridescent blue or grey. Both phones are very attractive and sleek, with the Honor 10’s shiny finish looking stunning.
Now we come to the most important part of the comparison for photographers – the camera functionality.
Both phones are very user-friendly in this respect. The Honor 10 takes you to photo mode with AI photography enabled. This can be toggled on or off. Both offer scan app, flash, moving picture and settings options along the top.
As mentioned before, the Huawei P20 is being marketed as a phone that is more for the pros, and in light of this the camera interface is slightly more stylised than the Honor 10, with a leather effect running along the photo options. On the Huawei P20 there is the option to choose vivid colours or smooth colours for photos along the top as well. He Huawei P20 offers direct access to night and pro modes through the scroll bar at the bottom, whereas these can be found under the ‘more’ tab on the Honor 10.
Both essentially use the same interface – just stylised differently. The Huawei is a little more traditional in its symbols and look – whereas the Honor is a little more modern.
On the left is the Honor 10, the right is the Huawei P20
So which one is better?
That’s the million dollar question. If the Leica branded lenses and easier access matter to you, then the Huawei P20 will stand out. However if it’s a modern looking phone you want and you’re on a budget – then the Honor 10 is more likely to float your boat. There is a relatively large price difference between the two – the Honor 10 is largely only available online and retails at £399/$535, whereas the Huawei P20 is available through your local network stores but carries a heftier price tag of £599/$803 – this could vary network to network.
That’s a £200/$268 mark up for what is essentially the same phone underneath – there are cosmetic and camera performance differences, however the hardware and performance remain relatively the same.
We are currently putting together detailed reviews of both of these handsets, which will be on site shortly, so this should help to shed some light on the difference between the performances of both cameras.