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Wed, 28 March 2018

Huawei Launches P20 Pro - But Does it Have Enough Storage Space?

Huawei chose Paris, the City of Light, for Tuesday's massive P20 launch.

 While there are different versions of the P20 series, it is the P20 Pro which took most of the limelight as the smartphone features the world’s first Leica triple camera and some extremely creative AI technology which promises to improve mobile photography for everyone.

“We look for inspiration from artists to continuously evolve our approach to design and innovation,” said Richard Yu, Chief Executive Officer, Huawei Consumer Business Group. “With a breakthrough triple camera on the Huawei P20 Pro, an advanced dual camera on the Huawei P20 and powerful artificial intelligence on both, today’s most vibrant consumers can capture and share the brilliance of the world around them.”

The three camera lenses on the Huawei P20 Pro. With such impressive camera specs will the 128GB of internal memory, and no micro sd slot to expand memmory, be enough? Click to enlarge.

The camera system on the P20 Pro comprises of a 40MP RGB sensor, a 20MP monochrome sensor, an 8MP sensor with telephoto lens, and a Leica color temperature sensor for better color reproduction. And that's just on the back.

 With f/1.8, f/1.6 and f/2.4 wide apertures, the Huawei P20 Pro also includes a Leica 3X telephoto (VARIO-SUMMILUX-H 1:1.6-2.4/27-80ASPH) lens for long-range photography of up to 5X Hybrid Zoom.

 The image sensor can even capture low light photos with up to ISO 102,400, though how usable an image taken at that ISO would be remains to be seen as even on a camera like the Canon 1D X you would never go that high.

The smartphone is also bundled with some highly innovative software. With the Kirin 970 processor, the P20 Pro automatically identifies more than 500 scenarios in 19 categories, selecting camera settings to deliver what Huawei says are “more professional-looking images”.

Huawei P20's series colourful line up. Click to enlarge.

Huawei's new AIS (AI Image Stabilization) looks very impressive and manages to steady handheld night shots to make long exposure images of up to six seconds without a tripod. Longer exposures are also possible but then a tripod would be needed.

The P20 Pro also features 4D predictive focus and AI-Assisted Composition, more useful software which which many will love.

  The 6.1-inch P20 Pro runs EMUI 8.1 based on Android 8.1, and has 6GB of RAM with 128 GB of internal memory.

But....

This all sounds amazing right? Yes it does, until you consider that if you want to make full use of the impressive camera capabilities built into the P20 Pro smartphone, then 128GB of internal memory is not all that much. This is especially true when you calculate how much space any existing data, internal and external, you will transfer from your old phone will take up. And, as there is no micro sd slot for you to expand the storage capacity then you could fill that 128GB much quicker than you may think. In fact for some, this may even be a deal breaker. Yes it's great if the 40MP camera is amazing and there's plenty of fancy software to make your photography look even better. And to have a battery last for so long and charge so quickly is terrific. But if you have filled your internal memory half way through the day but still want to take shots, what are you going to do?!

As the P20 Pro is aimed at photography enthusiasts it is very disappointing that it does not address one of the biggest problems photographers face - storage. A micro sd slot would have solved that issue.

Editor's note: We'll update this page with test images and more once we are able to test the P20 Pro properly, which should be very soon.

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