They run Android 7.0 Nougat, with Huawei’s EMEI 5.1 skin on top of it - and it’s here that you might need some help.
Y’see, EMEI is a complex bit of software, with its own way of doing things, so knowing how to get to the good stuff isn’t always obvious. Read on, and we’ll show you the shortcuts.
1) Turn on one-button navigation
Definitely the first thing you should do is to switch on the P10’s genius one-button navigation.
Head to ‘Settings’ > ‘Navigation key’ and select ‘Off-screen navigation button’. This removes the standard Android three-button onscreen nav and instead puts all three shortcuts on the fingerprint sensor, freeing up screen space. Tap to go back, hold to go home and swipe to see your recent apps.
It’ll seem odd at first, but give it a day or two and trust me, you’ll be loving the speed and simplicity of it.
2) Turn on apps drawer
The P10 ships with EMUI’s take on the apps locker, which is decidedly iOS-like. By which I mean that it’s non-existent: all of your apps will be displayed on multiple homescreens.
Maybe that’s how you want it, especially if you’ve just moved from an iPhone, but personally I’d far rather keep my regularly used apps on one or two homescreens and store the rest in a locker. To change it, go to ‘Settings’ > ‘Home screen style’ and select ‘Drawer’. You know it makes sense.
3) Search for anything on your phone
Huawei’s EMEI 5.1 software lets you easily search through your apps, contacts, messages, calendar and more with a single press. Just hold you finger down on a homescreen - anywhere will work, even on an app - and drag down. This will open up the search screen. Start typing and you’ll results appear below, grouped into Contacts, Messaging, Calendar etc.
One extra tip: to the left of the search bar itself there’s a little symbol that looks like a box with a line through it. Tap this to open a combined QR code / barcode scanner.
4) View the battery percentage
The P10’s battery is best described as adequate, although the P10 Plus has a bigger cell inside it and will get you through a day with ease.
Either way you’re going to want to see how much juice is left, so head to ‘Settings’ > ‘Battery’ and scroll right down to the bottom. There you’ll find ‘Remaining battery percentage’, which you should obviously turn on.
5) Get to your shortcuts quickly
As with all Android phones you can access a grid of shortcuts including Torch, Bluetooth, Airplane Mode and so on by dragging down from the top of the screen. However Huawei also lets you access some of the most commonly used shortcuts from the lock screen.
Simply swip up from the bottom of the lockscreen and you’ll see five shortcuts: sound recorder, Calculator, Torch, Stopwatch/Alarms, QR/barcode scanner.
6) Scan your fingers
As with nearly all flagships these days, the P10 can be unlocked with a fingerprint. Unlike previous Huawei phones, the sensor sits on the front and is startlingly quick in use.
You can scan up to five digits and I suggest registering at least four: thumb and first two fingers on your right hand (or left if you’re that way inclined) and index finger on the left.
7) Turn off knuckle gestures
Like most Huawei phones, the P10 and P10 Plus have a few special shortcuts operated via your knuckles. Weird, huh?
There are three of them here: Smart screenshot, Draw and Split-screen gesture, and each can be turned on or off as required.
Personally I’d turn of smart screenshot right away. The knuckle gesture version does give you some extra features, for instance you can capture part of the screen rather than all of it by drawing a shape with your knuckles, but really, how often do you think you’ll do that? Instead, what frequently happens is that you’ll find your fingers accidently triggering knuckle mode and giving you a screenshot when you don’t want one.
Just turn it off: ‘Settings’ > ‘Smart assistance’ > ‘Motion control’ > ‘Smart screenshot’. Besides, a screenshot is easy enough to do on the P10 anyway - you simply hold the volume down and power keys simultaneously.
It’s the same deal with Draw. This lets you draw a letter with your knuckles in order to open a specific app - for instance C to open the camera. But it doesn’t work when the screen is off (which would be useful), so it’s easier to just open the app in the normal way.
Finally there’s Split-screen gesture. This has some value - you draw a line with your knuckle from one side of the screen to the other to enter Nougat’s split-screen mode. Again though, it’s probably easier to do it in the conventional way: go to your recent apps list then hold your finger on the top bar of the app, then drag it up to the top of the screen.