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Honor 10 vs Huawei P20 Pro: In-house flagships tussle

16 May 2018 5

In last few years not only Huawei grew exponentially but also their sub-brand Honor emerges as one of the best options in the affordable segment. Honor smartphones are known for their top-notch stylish build quality with top-tier hardware at a fraction of price tag as opposed to flagships in the market.

As promised Honor finally took the stage in London to globally announce their flagship Honor 10. The Honor 10 is the company' first flagship smartphone of this year. Like the earlier Honor flagships, the Honor 10 is beautiful, sleek, stylish, powerful and above all budget friendly. The Honor 10 is bringing all goodies of the latest flagships and also it brings far better looks than its predecessor. It features a notch design which is becoming pretty common in latest Android flagships.

Like always whenever a new smartphone is out we put in head-to-head competition with the competitors and other options in the same category. We already compared the Honor 10 against the standard Huawei P20, today we will compare it against the larger sibling P20 pro. We will find out whether Honor 10 is capable to be your next daily driver flagship or not. Also is it capable to challenge one of the most expensive flagships P20 Pro from Huawei?

Honor is the subsidiary brand of Huawei that's why their smartphones hardware mainly comes from Huawei to save the R&D cost. As both the Honor 10 and P20 Pro are latest flagships from respective companies that's why both shares number of features. Keeping all the aspects in mind, we will find out the key differences and similarities between the two devices so that you can easily decide whether you should go for the expensive option or the budget-friendly Honor 10.

71.2 x 149.6 x 7.7 mm
5.84 inches - 2280x1080 px
73.9 x 155 x 7.8 mm
6.1 inches - 2244x1080 px
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Design

Honor brings an exciting color finish for the Honor 10. The new special color is announced as Phantom Blue, for the Chinese customers, this color variant was announced as Mirage Blue. The Honor 10 chassis is made up of metal with glass covering the rear side. The rear glass has 15 different layers to reflect different color at different viewing angles. The Phantom Blue variant showcase blue and Purple color. The device overall finish is pretty great and certainly, we can claim it as an attention grabber device.

Although Honor is opting glass rear for quite some time finish is not extraordinary all the time. However, we can easily claim this time certainly it is the best amongst all. The glass and metal sandwich design is pretty sleek and you can easily grasp the Honor 10 with a single hand. The device certainly a pretty good option for those who don't like phablet devices. The rear side is adorned with dual rear cameras placed horizontally on the top left corner. Up front, you will get a full front-facing display with a small notch at the top. The fingerprint scanner is embedded under the display but it can't be rated amongst the best in terms of speed and accuracy.

Fortunately, the device retains the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack. The headphone jack is on the bottom edge with the USB-C port. Being a budget-friendly smartphone it lacks the water and dust resistance capability. The Honor 10 dimensions are 149.6 x 71.2 x 7.7mm and it weighs 153g.

The P20 Pro is also featuring a glass and metal sandwich design. The glass rear of the device also comes with a number of layers to make it a reflective smartphone. It also changes color shades on different angles. The P20 Pro features triple camera setup on the rear side. The dual sensors are placed vertically on the top left corner with a separate sensor below it. It comes with front-facing fingerprint scanner below the display.

The front-facing side has a notch at the top with slim bezels around the corner. Being a larger sibling it is slightly taller at 155 x 73.9 x 7.8 mm and it weighs 180g. The P20 Pro is an IP67 certified device which means it can resist up to 1 meters deep water for 30 minutes without any damage. Overall design aesthetics of both the devices are same and both looks quite premium in hands.

Display

Although both the devices share similar design language that similarity ends in display section as both have different display panels of different sizes. The Honor 10 sports a 5.84-inches display panel with a Full HD+ screen resolution of 1080 x 2280 pixels. The display aspect ratio is 19:9 and it is an IPS LCD panel. The display pixels density is 423 pixels-per-inch.

Being an LCD panel it isn't as vibrant as the OLED screens but certainly, it is one of the best LCD panels on any smartphone. The colors accuracy and contrast level is pretty good. The brightness level is also good enough to be used in direct sunlight. On the other hand, the P20 Pro is currently the latest best flagship from Huawei that's why it is packed with the best possible hardware.

This year Huawei opted an OLED display panel for the P20 Pro. The display screen is 6.1-inches with a Full HD+ screen resolution of 1080 x 2244 pixels. The display panel aspect ratio is 18.7:9. The reason behind slightly higher screen resolution of Honor 10 is lack of a physical button on the front. The P20 Pro's display pixels density is 429 pixels per inch.

The P20 Pro display is better because of being an OLED instead of regular LCD. You may not find any difference in regular usage but when you put them side by side the difference is quite visible.

Hardware

Under the hood, both the devices feature the latest best hardware from Huawei. Those who are aware Huawei is not amongst those who use Qualcomm's or any other third party chipsets instead the company produce their own chipsets to compete against Qualcomm's, Exynos, MediaTek and other SoCs in the market. Last year the company introduced Kirin 970 as their flagship chipset with the built-in Neural processing unit to better handle AI tasks. Although it is almost six months old still it is one of the fastest chipsets in the market.

The Kirin 970 chipset is powering both the Huawei P20 Pro and Honor 10. Its an Octa-core SoC, the four power-efficient Cortex-A53 cores are clocking at 1.84Ghz whereas the other four performance Cortex-A73 cores clocking speed is 2.36Ghz. The P20 Pro comes only in one configuration with 6GB RAM and 128GB native storage. Its native storage isn't further expandable.

On the other hand, the Honor 10 is available in two configurations. The base variant has and 64GB storage whereas the top-tier variant comes with 128GB storage. Both the variants have 4GB RAM on board. The best thing is its native storage is further expandable using MicroSD card. The reason behind non-expandable storage of the P20 Pro is IP67 ratings. As powerhouses both the devices are equally good in handling HIFI multi-tasks.

Specs Honor 10 Huawei P20 Pro
Display 5.8-inches 6.1-inches
Screen resolution 1080 x 2280 pixels 1080 x 2244 pixels
Chipset Kirin 970 Kirin 970
RAM 4GB 6GB
Storage 64/128GB Expandable 128GB Non-Expandable
Rear cameras 24+16MP 40+20MP+8MP
Front camera 24MP 24MP
Battery 3,400mAh 4,000mAh
USB Type-C Type-C
3.5mm headphone jack Yes No
OS Android Oreo 8.1 Android Oreo 8.1
IP-ratings None IP67
Cameras

This year almost all OEMs are paying special attention to the camera capabilities of their smartphones. We witness Galaxy S9, P20 series, Sony XZ2, Xiomi Mi Mix 2S and the most recent LG G7 ThinQ all are packed with the superb cameras. Huawei P20 Pro's key selling aspect is its camera sensors, same is the case with the Honor 10. Almost all premium smartphones of this year have dual rear cameras and the good thing is Honor 10 is no exception.

The dual sensors on the Honor 10 provide depth data to blur the background of the images which is widely known as Portrait mode. Thanks to smaller display panel you may not find many imperfect blurred images. The Honor 10 also has monochrome and RGB sensors set up on the rear like the Huawei flagships.

Considering the top-notch camera capabilities of P20 Pro, the Honor 10 is certainly far behind in this competition. The P20 Pro certainly provides the class-leading results. However, considering its price range it is still offering one of the best-capturing capabilities. Honor 10 doesn't have Leica certified cameras like the Pro version but Honor does bring AI support.

Thanks to AI support the Honor 10 detects the scenery using machine learning abilities and change camera settings accordingly. For instance, if you are capturing food, pet or landscape photo the device will automatically detect the scene and change colors, contrast and brightness level accordingly. The good thing is Honor 10 allows the user either they choose capturing using AI support or without AI.

Unfortunately, the Honor 10 lacks the Night mode feature which is one of the key aspects of P20 Pro's camera. The P20 Pro night mode allows capturing great shots even in low-light conditions. However Honor 10 captured images detail suffers badly in low-light conditions. For the Pro users both the devices come with manual mode.

The P20 Pro feature triple rear cameras, the primary snapper is a 40MP RGB lens with f/1.8 aperture whereas the secondary sensor is a 20MP module with f/1.6 aperture. Apart from these two sensors, there is an 8MP optical zoom sensor with up to 3x zoom. The device also offers hybrid zoom up to 5x. The P20 Pro comes with AI optimized sensors which detect 20 different items before capturing. Almost in all sorts of conditions the P20 Pro camera emerge as the winner.

The Honor 10 primary color sensor is 24MP with f/1.8 aperture whereas the secondary sensor is a 16MP sensor with f/1.8 aperture. Both the sensors jointly produce the final results. Up front, the selfie camera sensor on both the devices is a 24MP module with f/2.0 aperture. Both the Honor 10 and P20 Pro supports 4K recording at 30 frames per second but the P20 Pro also supports slow-motion Full HD videos at 60 frames per second.

Software

As OS both the devices is pre-installed with the latest Android Oreo 8.1 OS with EMUI 8.1 layer over it. The latest EMUI 8.1 isn't bringing huge differences as opposed to EMUI 8.0 but certainly having the latest version is something which everyone prefers. Although the EMUI 8.0 was a huge jump from EMUI 5.1 as it reduces the bloatware to a minimal level still it isn't bloatware-free version. Undoubtedly one of the most criticizing aspects of Huawei smartphones was it software, however, Huawei improved significantly in last few iterations.

Battery

A 3,400mAh battery is under the hood to keep the Honor 10 lights on. It comes with USB-C port for connectivity and charging. On a single charge, the device easily lasts one day on normal to heavy usage. The P20 has an advantage as it is packed with a fairly large 4,000mAh battery cell. On normal usage the device last more than one day. However, both the devices support SuperCharging tech.

According to Huawei, the SuperCharge tech charges device up to 50% in just 30 minutes. Unfortunately despite having glass rear both the devices lack wireless charging support.

Price

As far as pricing is a concern the Honor 10 base variant will be available in the European countries at a price tag of €399 whereas the top-tier variant costs €449($540). For the UK customers, the company is offering only the 128GB variant at a price tag of £399. The P20 Pro isn't officially released in the US but the device was available on eBay for a limited time. The P20 Pro is available in the UK at a price tag of £799. The Honor 10 is available at nearly a fraction of the P20 Pro's price tag.

Conclusion:

In terms of looks and premium design language, both the devices are pretty great options. Both come with glass and metal clad design but the lack of a physical button on the front makes Honor 10 a pretty attractive. The P20 Pro takes lead in the display as it comes with the OLED display panel. The hardware specs of both the devices are almost similar except the RAM. It's not an easy task to beat P20 Pro in the camera department that's why we can't expect the Honor 10 to beat P20 Pro in this segment. Considering the price tag, the Honor 10 is certainly packed with pretty good camera setup.

In pricing department the Honor 10 emerges as a better value for your hard-earned money, the P20 Pro becomes likable only when you are considering the triple camera setup only. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments sections below regarding the Honor 10 vs P20 Pro. Stay tuned, we will be bringing more previews and comparisons in coming weeks.

(last update 16 October 2018 @ 11:18)

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