Going Hands On With The Huawei P10


Following the success of the Huawei P9, Huawei’s latest flagship smartphone, the Huawei P10 and P10 Plus were officially launched in Sri Lanka on the 19th of April 2017. Boasting an impressive set of features including a certification from Leica like the Huawei P9, the Huawei P10 and P10 Plus are available at a price of LKR. 94,900/- and LKR 109,900/- from Singer showrooms island wide and authorized resellers.

Ever curious to know what makes a flagship tick, we managed to get our hands on a Huawei P10 in Dazzling Blue. In case you missed it, we did an unboxing and hands-on of the Dazzling Blue variant of the Huawei P10.

First Impressions are important

Featuring a minimal design on the box, the Huawei P10 comes with the standard accessories such as USB-A to USB Type-C cable for charging and data transfer, a charging dock, earphones and also a clear rubber/plastic cover which is pretty standard from manufacturers such as Huawei and Oppo.

Huawei P10
Image Credits: Mahesh de Andrado

The Huawei P10 does not disappoint from this end. The device sports an aluminum unibody, and measures 5.72 x 2.73 x 0.28 inches, weighing 145 g. Looking at the device, the first thing that pops into my mind is that it vaguely resembles a Oneplus 3. Located at the bottom of the device are the USB Type-C port microphone, 3.5mm audio connector and also a speaker. Located on the right side are the power/lock buttons and the volume rocker whilst the SIM tray (which also acts as a MicroSD card tray) is located on the left.

Huawei P10
Image Credits: Mahesh d Andrado

It also has a front mounted fingerprint sensor that also acts as the Home button. Akin to the previous flagship Huawei P9, the P10 also has a completely flat with nothing sticking out, not even the dual camera lenses. Yes, just like the its predecessor, the Huawei P10 sports a dual camera and accompanying lens technology co-engineered with Leica.

The Hardware

The colors are vivid and clear thanks to the Full HD Neo IPS display. So you can sit back and enjoy your favorite movies and videos along with your photos If you’re a streamer or ardent Netflix fan, you also have dual nano SIM support and full LTE (4G) support. Need room to store all those videos? Well, with 64GB of onboard storage and a MicroSD card slot to boot, you’ll rarely find yourself at a loss for space. Packing the latest flagship HiSilicon Kirin 960 Octa-core processor along with 4GB of RAM, the Huawei P10 has all you need to multitask the entire day.

In terms of security, the fingerprint sensor does an extremely quick job of unlocking the phone. Even gently placing your finger on the sensor unlocks it in less than a second. Apart from unlocking the device, the fingerprint sensor also has some advanced control options such as a short press for the standard Back button, a long press which takes you to the home screen and swiping left or right for recent apps.

The Software

The Huawei P10 ships with Android 7.0 Nougat skinned with Huawei’s own EMUI or EmotionUI. A notable feature was the ability to either have an iOS-style home screen or a more standard one with an app drawer.

Huawei P10
Image Credits: Mahesh de Andrado

You also get the standard Google apps and Huawei’s own apps coupled with Facebook, Messenger, Flipboard and CNN. The OS itself has a number of customizations that can be done with regard to gestures and shortcuts which are pretty cool if you’re into that sort of thing. You also get a media player with Dolby DTS, but no radio. There’s no stereo speaker either but the speaker is quite loud and clear when it needs to be.

Just how good is the camera?

Just like its predecessor, the Huawei P10 sports a dual camera setup. This time it consists of one 12-megapixel color sensor paired with a 20-megapixel monochrome sensor. These work in tandem to boost the amount of light and detail captured in each image. Co-engineered with Leica, the Huawei P10 also makes use of lens manufacturer Summarit to further enhance the camera quality of the Huawei P10.

Huawei P10
Image Credits: Andrew Jebaraj

Delving into the technical details, you have dual f/2.2 lenses. The camera features Optical Image Stabilization, phase detection and laser autofocus. TL;DR? A powerful camera with a lot of advanced features that you may or may not need.

Collage 1The camera interface is simple; just point and click. You can also control elements such as shutter speed, ISO levels, etc. You also get no less than 16 camera modes which include HDR, beauty, panoramas, light painting, time lapse, slow motion, watermarks, and a whole lot more. The camera interface is easy to use with a little “I” on top of the interface that gives you tips on what features do what.

Huawei P10
Image Credits: Mahesh de Andrado
Huawei P10
The Good Food mode provides richer colors to make your friends jealous

Huawei also incorporated a dedicated portrait mode used to enhance the image quality of selfies. These work to adjust lighting, balancing color and many more enhancements. Images are quite clear and detailed and the camera also has cool features such as object tracking and a live ISO meter so that you can see the amount of noise in an image and adjust lighting accordingly.

With regard to video, as we stated earlier, you can record [email protected] and [email protected] with stereo sound. Video playback is quite clear but is dependent on the lighting condition so you may want to adjust the lighting of the scene before you shoot any videos. Worst case scenario; you can use the inbuilt flash.

Burning In the Huawei P10

My go-to benchmarks are Antutu and GeekBench as they give you real world examples of what to expect with any smartphone. A typical test takes around 5-10 minutes depending on the hardware capabilities of your device. You can also compare results against other devices. Supposedly, the flagship Kirin 960 tops the Snapdragon 835 as well. Well, I was about to find out. Hitting up a score of 117,537, the Huawei P10 outperforms its predecessor and also trades blows with the Meizu Pro 6s and the Motorola Moto Z XT1650

Huawei P10
And the scores for Antutu are in

While the benchmark on Antutu didn’t exactly blow me away, the results of GeekBench certainly did. Racking up a score of 1853 for single core performance and 5898 for multi-core performance, the Huawei P10 comfortably beat devices such as the Samsung Galaxy S7, OnePlus 3 and Samsung Galaxy Note 7.

Huawei P10
Now that’s pretty impressive
Image Credits: Mahesh de Andrado

Ready, Set, Charge!

As far as battery life goes, it’s pretty much same with pretty much all flagships currently released. A 3,200 mAh capacity is pretty standard and holds up for pretty much a full day of use. If you spend most of your time online and on LTE, then you will experience a bit of a battery drain. For best use, switch to WiFi when possible and you’re good to go.

Huawei also includes Fast Charging but they call it “Super Charge”. So you can essentially get a full charge in around 90 minutes. Battery life was actually pretty good with around 4-5 hours of screen on time, and me sing Facebook, Whatsapp, Instagram and playing Pokemon Go as well. I still had around 22% battery at the end of the day. As always, actual usage though depends on factors such as screen on time, network signal quality and how much you actually use the phone and its apps.

Final Thoughts

The Huawei 10 is undoubtedly a very powerful contender in the flagship smartphone arena packing a hefty punch of specs along with a killer price as well. The Leica certified lenses only strengthen its hold in said arena. The phone competes with the like of the OnePlus Three, Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge and the iPhone 7 Plus (in terms of the camera).

If you want a slightly higher end spec in terms of display resolution and Storage, you can also check out the Huawei P10 Plus. Both the Huawei P10 and P10 Plus are available for preorder from Dialog Outlets islandwide. They are priced at priced at LKR. 94,900/- and LKR 109,900/- respectively. Expect both devices to be available towards the 1st week of May 2017. In case you were wondering, the Huawei P10 wil be available in colors of Dazzling Blue, Dazzling Gold and a Deep Black.


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