We're all familiar with the Huawei Mate 10 Pro's specs by now: that it packs an upgraded twin Leica setup, a powerful battery and the new Kirin 970 AI chip, all in an end-to end 18:9 screen.
But what does all of that translate to at times when it really matters - like when you use it on a holiday? We took it with us on a vacay to find out.
Good grip for daredevil pics
Like most phones this year, the Huawei Mate 10 packs a 18:9 screen with the most minimal of bezels, basically putting a 6in screen into a 5.5in body. Add to that a curved design that fits perfectly in your palm and you have a phone that's easy to grip and carry about, perfect for when you need to stick your hand out to capture a selfie while you're holding on to a cliff edge with the other hand.
Enough power so you can stay out of your hotel all day
Despite using the Mate 10 Pro all day on our trip, we didn't even come close to getting a low-battery warning. And by all day we mean we used Google Maps extensively to get directions to our next destination, took an obscene number of photos with the Leica dual cameras and scrolled through Google and Facebook obsessively to search for the best food spots.
We started each day by plugging the phone into the Huawei SuperCharge adapter, powering the phone to max capacity in just over an hour (no need to charge overnight). And despite how much we used it, at the end of each day there was generally 30-40% of juice left. We don’t see any other flagship phone that can compare with this level of daily usage and it was awesome knowing we didn't have to lug a power bank around all day just in case the phone died on us.
Capture any scene easily
The Huawei P10 and P10 Plus showed how effective a 12MP RGB and 20MP monochrome dual sensor setup is for taking photos, and the Huawei Mate 10 Pro takes it one step further with its Leica Summilux-H f/1.6 aperture lenses.
Then there’s the AI-assisted scene detection thanks to the Kirin 970 AI chip. Point at a subject and the camera automatically switches its settings to match it, be it cats, dogs, landscapes, and even food (you can never take enough food photos for Instagram on a holiday).
The Leica-feel is still best when taking portraits - and it gets especially classy when you choose to shoot with the only true black and white camera on a smartphone now.
Another cool feature is 3D Panorama. Basically you can take a “3D photo” of a subject, like a motorcycle or a delicious bowl of tendon, by moving the camera around the subject. On the resulting photo, you can move the phone left and right as if you’re seeing “around” the subject.
Your personal translator
Huawei teamed up with Microsoft to come up with a dedicated Microsoft Translator app using the Kirin 970 AI chip. And after using it to speak to strangers on our trip, we found it adequate for communicating with and getting help in a foreign country.
Of course, it's a good idea to pre-download the text translation for whichever country you're going to travel to. But translation using voice was understandable and had little delay, provided we used simple English to get our point across. We found it better than trying our usual Google Translate solution.
On the other hand, text translation can be a little iffy - it takes a few tries before the phone gets it right (or doesn’t get it at all).
As fast as you are
Unlocking the Huawei Mate 10 Pro with the fingerprint sensor was easy despite our hands sweating buckets in the summer weather - the phone unlocked in less than a second.
Then there’s the super speed - the Kirin 970 CPU uses its multiple cores to deliver a super fast experience, so we were able to switch from Google maps to search to translator to Instagram and back again with no problem.
A mobile desktop that can travel with you
What happens when you're holidaying without your computer and you suddenly remember you need it to do some work? The Mate 10 Pro hooks up to any monitor with a type-C to HDMI cable, turning it into a desktop (and you can still answer calls with your phone while you're at it).
It’s things like these that really make the Huawei Mate 10 Pro the best phone for a holiday. Or, when you think about it, just about every day.