The Huawei Mate 30 Pro has been officially announced at an event in September 2019, but how does it stack up to the excellent P30 Pro from a few months back?

The Huawei P30 Pro launched in March 2019 and bettered last year's Mate 20 Pro in terms of size. Six months on and we've got an even bigger Mate 30 Pro, which we long expected. Let's take a look at how the Huawei P30 Pro and Mate 30 Pro compare.

What's the same between the Mate 30 Pro and P30 Pro?

There are quite a few basic similarities between the Huawei P30 Pro and the Mate 30 Pro, though many of the specifics have changed. 

However, both share these characteristics. 

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What's the difference between the Mate 30 Pro and P30 Pro?

Now we've looked at what is similar, let's look at what's different between the two handsets. 

Key hardware and 5G support

  • Mate 30 Pro: Kirin 990 with 5G / Kirin 990 with 4G
  • P30 Pro: Kirin 980 with 4G 

The Huawei P30 Pro uses the Kirin 980 chipset from 2018, but the new Mate 30 Pro ups the ante on this slightly, with the latest Kirin 990. The 990 remains an octa-core CPU at its heart, but uses the latest Cortex-A76 ARM design and Mali G76 graphics processor.

Crucially, though there are two Mate 30 Pro handsets, one of which has 5G capabilities, while the other offers 4G. The 990 boasts 5G on the chip, so the Mate 30 Pro and Huawei claims the 5G Mate 30 Pro is the fastest available with 22 antennas inside its body, including 14 specific 5G antennas.

Software 

  • Mate 30 Pro: EMUI 10 with Android 10
  • P30 Pro: EMUI 9 running on Android 9 Pie

With Huawei's trade ban in the US, the software for the Mate 30 Pro was one of the most talked-about aspects of this device launch. The Mate 30 Pro is still based on Android 10 rather than Huawei's Harmony OS, with EMUI 10 on top, but there are no Google apps or services on board.

The P30 Pro is based on Android 9 Pie, with the previous version of EMUI. It does offer Google apps and services though.

Screen size

  • Mate 30 Pro: 6.53-inches, Horizon Display, OLED
  • P30 Pro: 6.47-inches, OLED

Last year's Mate 20 Pro clocked in at 6.39-inches, while the Mate 30 Pro increases this to 6.53-inches, making it slightly larger than the 6.46-inch P30 Pro too. You do wonder how much larger phone screens can get before users start to think they're too big. However, the demand is clearly there for sub-7-inch devices. 

The P30 Pro has a much smaller 'waterdrop' notch than the Mate 30 Pro which has a similar wide notch to the previous Mate 20 Pro. This is for 3D Face Unlock technology, as well as a gesture sensor. 

The Mate 30 Pro also introduces a 'waterfall' curved edge design that Huawei is calling a Horizon Display, which curves at an angle of 88 degrees. Of course, we've seen these before, most notably in the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge and later, but the Mate 30 Pros screen does appear to stretch further into the edge of the device.

Display resolution

  • Mate 30 Pro: 2400 x 1176 resolution, 409ppi
  • P30 Pro: 2340 x 1080, 398ppi

The Huawei P30 Pro has a slightly lower resolution than the Mate 30 Pro but as it has a smaller display, its pixel density is only slightly lower. The P30 Pro has a pixel density of 398ppi, while the Mate 30 Pro is 409ppi.

In reality, while the two differ in terms of numbers, it wouldn't be noticeable to the human eye.

Physical size

  • Mate 30 Pro: TBC, 198g
  • P30 Pro: 158 x 73.4 x 8.41mm, 192g

Huawei's Mate 30 Pro is larger than the P30 Pro, though we are still waiting on exact measurements. It is also slightly heavier at 198g compared to 192g. 

Memory and storage

  • Mate 30 Pro: 8GB+256GB, NM card 
  • P30 Pro: 8GB+128GB / 8GB+256GB / 8GB+512GB, NM card

The Huawei Mate 30 Pro comes with 8GB of RAM and 256GN of storage in both the 5G model and the 4G mode. The P30 Pro meanwhile, has a few more options in terms of the memory and storage variants offered. Both devices support Huawei's Nano Memory card format for storage expansion.

Battery size and charging

  • Mate 30 Pro: 4500mAh battery capacity, 27W wireless charging and 40W wired charging, reverse wireless charging
  • P30 Pro: 4200mAh battery capacity, 15W wireless charging and 40W wired charging, reverse wireless charging

The Huawei Mate 30 Pro one-ups the P30 Pro in this department, with a larger battery of 4500mAh compared to the P30 Pro's 4200mAh, promising a long-life of well over a day's use.

The Mate 30 Pro also betters the older one for charging as well with improved wireless charging speeds in addition to fast charging over USB-C with the supplied fast charger. Huawei brands this Huawei SuperCharge.

Again the Mate 30 Pro has reverse wireless charging, first introduced with last year's Mate 20 Pro, which the P30 Pro has too, but Huawei has claimed the technology is three times the speed on the Mate 30 Pro. It also offers 27W wireless charging, while the P30 Pro has 15W wireless charging.

Camera specifications

  • Mate 30 Pro: 
    • Main: 40MP 1/1.7in SuperSensing (RYYB) sensor, f/1.6, 26mm equiv, OIS
    • 'Cine' Ultra-Wide: 40MP 1/1.54in (RGGB) sensor, f/1.8, 18mm equiv
    • Tele: 8MP 3x optical (80mm equiv.), f/2.4, OIS
    • 3D Depth Sensing (or 'ToF' / Time of Flight)
  • P30 Pro:
    • Main: 40MP 1/1.7in SuperSensing (RYYB) sensor, f/1.6, 26mm equiv, OIS
    • Ultra-Wide: 20MP, f/2.2, 16mm equiv
    • Tele: 8MP, 5x optical (125mm equiv), f/3.4, OIS
    • ToF / Time of Flight depth sensing

Both the Huawei P30 Pro and the Mate 30 Pro offer Leica hardware as we mentioned earlier and there's a quad rear camera on both too. Like the P30 Pro, the Mate has an ultra-wide lens, regular lens, telephoto lens and a Time of Flight sensor for depth. But aside from the main sensor, they differ.

Both camera systems are arranged in different ways for starters. While the P30 Pro has the rear camera lenses positioned in a vertical line in the top left, the Mate 30 Pro follows on from where the Mate 20 Pro, which positioned them in a square in the centre, by placing four lenses into a circular emblem to the centre, with the flash off to side.

But the big difference in the Mate 30 Pro is that it's refined its cameras. Rather than going for bigger numbers, its 3x optical zoom is actually less than the 5x found in the P30 Pro - probably because many found that focal length too much of a 'jump' from the main camera. Furthermore the Mate 30 Pro's ultra-wide lens isn't quite as wide as the P30 Pro's either.

There's a good reason for that last point: the Mate 30 Pro introduces what Huawei is calling a Cine Camera. While videography is part of its focus - it offers 4K 60p and, at lower res, can shoot up to 7680fps slow-mo - this sensor is 40MP and much larger than your average, with its 1/1.54in size. That means large pixel sizes for better quality. Unlike the SuperSensing main sensor - which is the same in both Mate 30 Pro and P30 Pro, featuring yellow sites for better low-light reproduction - the Cine Camera uses a traditional colour array, said to be better for moving images.

Colour variants

  • Mate 30 Pro: Emerald Green, Cosmic Purple, Black, Space Silver, Vegan Leather Orange, Vegan Leather Forest Green
  • P30 Pro: Breathing Crystal, Amber Sunrise, Aurora, Pearl White, Black

Sadly there's no twilight for this year's Huawei Mate 30 Pro, but there are six colour options, including two leather options that are still IP68 rated, like the other colours. Huawei has also introduced a gradient finish that goes from glossy to matte and Huawei claims the bottom of the Mate 30 Pro is anti-slip and fingerprint resistant.

The Huawei P30 Pro comes in five variants, several of which are beautiful.

Conclusion

The Huawei Mate 30 Pro improves on the premise of the P30 Pro in several ways but as it is the newer device, it will be the more expensive device too.

The specifications tend to be a trade-off - the P30 Pro is slightly smaller, has some lovely colours options, and a similar display resolution to the Mate 30 Pro, but the Mate 30 Pro has improved charging speeds, a bigger battery and a new display with waterfall sides that look quite impressive. And then there's 5G, which will become a more compelling proposition in the coming months. 

It's also worth considering last year's Mate 20 Pro, which although smaller and not as visually appealing as the Mate 30 Pro, is available at some stunning prices now: 

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