Huawei Mate 20 X 5G Arms-on Overview

You realize that bit in Star Wars the place Han, Luke, and Ben Kenobi come out of lightspeed within the Millennium Falcon and exclaim the Loss of life Star is just too large to be an area station? That’s what it’s like whenever you first see the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G. It appears to be like too large to be a smartphone. There’s a 7.2-inch display screen, which is bigger than the primary Google Nexus pill, however being large will not be what makes the Mate 20 X 5G particular. The clue is within the identify, as a result of that is the primary 5G telephone Huawei has launched, and I’ve been testing it out.

To try this, I went to Monaco, the primary nation on the planet to have full 5G protection. Utilizing the Mate 20 X 5G in Monaco is like dwelling within the close to future. Nearly in all places I went, the telephone confirmed and linked to a secure 5G sign, and infrequently returned speeds that will put the Millennium Falcon to disgrace.

Community speeds

5G assessments have been principally disappointing affairs up to now. Not so in Monaco. Related to the newly-launched Monaco Telecom community — the one community on the town constructed fully utilizing Huawei infrastructure tools — the sequence of assessments I ran on numerous Mate 20 X 5G gadgets noticed obtain speeds persistently above 650Mbps (megabits per second), and on some events above 1Gbps (gigabits per second).

The Huawei Mate 20 X 5G on Monaco Telecom’s 5G community is a revelation.

Strolling the streets within the night, weaving my well past the busy Monte Carlo On line casino and Cafe de Paris, then alongside previous the unbelievable yachts within the bay, every time I checked the telephone it had a powerful 5G sign, and check outcomes had been at all times at 500Mbps or quicker, in line with the Ookla Speedtest app.

The hanging half is the reliability and consistency, which for the time being for 5G is exclusive to Monaco. The sign is powerful, I maintained a 5G connection, and obtained 5G speeds when the community indicator mentioned it was linked to 5G. It might sound like a foolish factor, however this can be a drawback we’ve encountered in different 5G assessments elsewhere on the planet. It must be added that the telephone is simply hardly accountable — this efficiency is essentially all the way down to the sturdy 5G community from Huawei and Monaco Telecom.

Huawei Mate 20 X 5GAndy Boxall/Digital Developments

Though I didn’t have the flexibility to obtain any giant information, I might scrub via 1080p movies on YouTube, and the wait time was virtually zero for the video to start out taking part in once more, with no lack of high quality. In earlier 5G assessments I’ve carried out, discovering a spot to carry out such a check was half the problem. In Monaco, you are able to do it nearly wherever. Downloading a couple of pace check apps from Google Play, the 50MB information arrived instantaneously. Saying something occurs in “the blink of a watch” seems like a cliché, however small information like these apps arrive with out the obtain bar even having time to register the file has been downloaded and put in. Blink, and you’ll miss it.

The Huawei Mate 20 X 5G is a delicate large that occurs to be strapped to a rocket.

Add speeds hover round 40Mbps, however I did see some at 90Mbps or a bit of larger. This is without doubt one of the first occasions we’re seeing add speeds on 5G, and it’s good to see it’s considerably larger than what you normally get in add speeds on 4G LTE.

It’s price mentioning that Monaco’s 4G LTE community is superb by itself, and when the Mate 20 X 5G wasn’t in a 5G spot, it nonetheless achieved spectacular speeds between 180Mbps and 320Mbps. Downsides? There may be one, which I’ll come again to, however in any other case not a lot.

That is what the way forward for cellular connectivity actually can be like. The Huawei Mate 20 X 5G on Monaco Telecom’s 5G community is a revelation, and utilizing it lastly delivers on all that hype we’ve heard surrounding the next-gen community up to now. I didn’t need to give it again, as a result of I’d be compelled to endure from utilizing pedestrian previous 4G.

Highly effective specs, notchy display screen

The Huawei Mate 20 X 5G is quick not solely due to the community to which it’s linked, but additionally due to the parts inside working collectively in concord. It’s the primary Huawei telephone to be offered with the Balong 5000 5G modem, which works along side the Kirin 980 processor and supported by 8GB of RAM. It’s a flagship specification 5G smartphone, which has appreciable innovation inside.

Huawei Mate 20 X 5GAndy Boxall/Digital Developments

For instance, Huawei has used graphene and particular vapor chambers to make sure the telephone doesn’t overheat. I by no means observed the telephone getting scorching in any respect, regardless of a excessive ambient temperature. If something, the Huawei P30 Professional I additionally carried bought hotter with none 5G exercise in any respect. Huawei has been testing the telephone internally and externally for a lot of months, and it actually exhibits. The Mate 20 X 5G appears like a last product, with not one of the network-related glitches I’ve had on another 5G telephones.

Android Pie with EMUI 9.1 was put in on the telephone I examined, and it ran as easily and speedily because it does on the Huawei P30 Professional. Huawei is within the midst of a battle to do enterprise with U.S. corporations together with Google, and there are query marks over the way it will ship updates sooner or later. However the firm is assured it’ll at the very least ship Android Q, and the Mate 20 X 5G is listed on the agency’s explanatory web site as one of many telephones that can obtain the following model of Android.

Huawei Mate 20 X 5GAndy Boxall/Digital Developments

The Mate 20 X 5G’s display screen dominates just like the male lead character in an E.L. James novel. The 7.2-inch OLED panel is gigantic in a great way, immersing you in images and video simply as you’d count on; however the advantages come elsewhere too. The viewfinder display screen when utilizing the digital camera makes it simpler to border your photographs, for instance, and even poorly-optimized cellular web sites are far simpler to learn and navigate than they’re on smaller screens. Huawei has given us some colourful and shiny screens lately, and the Mate 20 X 5G continues that development.

Maybe the one disappointment is the notch. It’s a teardrop notch, and though it’s not particularly intrusive, it’s bigger than the one on the P30 Professional. We’re slowly getting used to no notch in any respect on our large telephones, because of the introduction of pop-up cameras. The Mate 20 X 5G does have a barely growing older look due to it.

By-product design

The growing older look additionally applies to the design, because the Mate 20 X 5G is spinoff of the Mate 20 and Mate 20 Professional launched late in 2018. Though hardly previous, it does appear to be an enormous model of a telephone launched final yr, proper all the way down to the admittedly cool textured rear panel, which feels just like the floor of a vinyl report. It does look like Huawei began the sq. digital camera array development we’re taking a look at for future telephone releases although, and the symmetry of the Mate 20 X 5G is visually pleasing in a means the early pictures of the Google Pixel four and iPhone 11 can’t match.

What in regards to the measurement? You gained’t be shocked that it’s an enormous telephone, however you might be stunned on the compact footprint. It’s 85mm large, whereas lots of the largest telephones we use right this moment are available at round 78mm, and at Eight.3mm thick it’s not unmanageable in any means. In actual fact, it’s simple to carry because of a body that doesn’t slip about in your hand, and that textured rear panel offering an excellent grip.

Huawei Mate 20 X 5GAndy Boxall/Digital Developments

Ergonomically it’s spectacular. I like the textured energy key with its crimson flash of colour so it’s simple to seek out utilizing contact or a look, and the fingerprint sensor on the again is completely positioned so I situated it every time and not using a drawback. Though the sheer measurement of the system means utilizing it with one hand is virtually not possible beneath regular circumstances, EMUI enables you to shrink the display screen and keyboard down into the underside left or proper nook, making it simpler to sort and navigate. Even the 233 gram weight is evenly distributed, neatly avoiding the telephone feeling ungainly.


The three Leica digital camera lenses are equivalent to the setup used on the Mate 20 Professional. Meaning a 40-megapixel important lens with an f/1.Eight aperture, a 20-megapixel f/2.2 aperture ultra-wide lens, and an Eight-megapixel, f/2.four telephoto lens. It has a 3x optical zoom, an evening mode, a wide-angle mode, and all the standard synthetic intelligence options. In my restricted time with the telephone it took nice images — not overly saturated, filled with element, and shut sufficient to actual life with simply the correct amount of added aptitude to make them shareable.

In low mild, it’s glorious. It made me miss utilizing the Mate 20 Professional, and jogged my memory how succesful the digital camera is on final yr’s Mate sequence flagship. Evening mode isn’t as uncannily efficient as it’s on the P30 Professional, which isn’t a criticism, and it nonetheless leaves some environment in evening time photographs.

The 3x zoom mode retains colour and element, however the 5x hybrid setting isn’t pretty much as good, and may’t evaluate with the P30 Professional’s 5x optical zoom. The large display screen makes interacting with the digital camera app easy, and the massive viewing space ensures framing a shot is straightforward, and figuring out focal factors quicker than doing so on a smaller display screen.

Battery life

Huawei has fitted a four,200mAh battery contained in the Mate 20 X 5G, and it’s most likely a bit of too small for the job. That is the principle draw back of getting a 5G connection on a telephone now. My check telephone used about 50% of its capability throughout my afternoon of testing, and that was solely a choice of pace assessments, and utilizing the digital camera. I had anticipated worse, but it surely’s nonetheless not unbelievable.

Huawei Mate 20 X 5GAndy Boxall/Digital Developments

It remained linked to the community on a regular basis; however no apps had been set as much as ship notifications. In the true world, I believe arduous use of the Mate 20 X 5G will see the battery battle to final a full day, though the extent of 5G connectivity and the way arduous it has to seek for the sign may also have an effect on this. A long term check will reveal extra.

5G attracts numerous energy, and batteries could have a tough time maintaining. This isn’t a scenario distinctive to the Mate 20 X 5G: It’s one which plagues the primary wave of 5G telephones usually.

Launch dates and conclusion

The Huawei Mate 20 X 5G is offered in China and the U.Ok. beginning July 26. Additionally it is on the market in Monaco with Monaco Telecom, and in a couple of different choose nations. It’s costly, like most 5G telephones, costing 1,000 British kilos (round $1,250). The Mate 20 X 5G is unlikely to launch within the U.S. contemplating Huawei continues to be on the Entity Record.

If you happen to’re a Monaco resident eager to provide 5G a attempt, the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G is a superb alternative. I sit up for testing it within the U.Ok. the place my expertise up to now hasn’t been as optimistic. Exterior of the connection, the Mate 20 X 5G is nice: The digital camera takes good photos, the display screen is large and engaging, the design is delicate with out being boring, and it’s highly effective for gaming.

After utilizing the telephone for a day, it wasn’t the intimidating behemoth I fearful it might be. The Huawei Mate 20 X 5G is a delicate large that occurs to be strapped to a rocket.

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