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Huawei Mate 20 vs Apple iPhone XS: How they differ?

15 November 2018 5

Like last year this year, Apple introduced three variants of latest iPhones including iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and the budget-friendly iPhone XR. Being the latest best flagship from Apple the iPhone XS Max emerge as a direct competitor to the Huawei's latest Mate 20 Pro. Along with the Pro model, Huawei launched the standard Mate 20 for those who are not willing to spend a hefty amount on the Pro model.

As expected to be the standard model the Mate 20 lacks few goodies of the Pro variants. The Mate 20 features a waterdrop notch instead of regular notch like iPhones. It doesn't have 3D facial recognition system like the Pro variant. Although it has a slightly larger display with a lower screen resolution. Another important aspect is Mate 20 triple rear cameras are not as good as the Pro model because Huawei trimmed the megapixels of the sensors and also few features. However, still, it emerges as a pretty good option as a standard flagship.

Today we will put the standard Mate 20 against the Apple's standard iPhone XS to know how two standard flagships stack up against each other. Despite being the standard flagship the iPhone XS is still way more expensive than the Mate 20. However, we will find out whether the iPhone XS is worth extra bucks or not? Without any further delay, let's start with the design.

77.2 x 158.2 x 8.3 mm
6.53 inches - 2244x1080 px
70.9 x 143.6 x 7.7 mm
5.8 inches - 2436x1125 px
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In terms of looks, the iPhone XS isn't different from last year iPhone X. You can differentiate the two despite holding both at the same time, the only prominent difference is new the gold variant of the latest iPhone XS. Despite the fact it doesn't have a refreshing change in design still, it looks pretty striking with its edge-to-edge display. The chassis is made up of stainless steel with glass covering the front and rear side.

The Huawei Mate 20 also has metal and glass-clad design, however, the finish is different. Following the latest trend, Huawei opted waterdrop notch at the top of the display. The notch cut out only features the selfie camera as it doesn't have sensors for 3D facial recognition. The bottom bezel is quite sleek but still, it is prominent. Unlike the iPhone XS, it doesn't have an edge-to-edge design. The Mate 20 has an aluminum frame so it isn't as premium as stainless steel of iPhone XS.

On the rear side, both the devices have a different finish. The Mate 20 has the striking hyper optical pattern with gently curved edges. It looks stunning thanks to gradient finishes. The triple rear cameras are enclosed in a square box with a different texture. The square box looks identical to the Mate 20 Pro, however, the only difference is Mate 20 Pro's LED flashlight is on the left side whereas the Mate 20 LED flashlight is on the right side. The Mate 20 lacks IP ratings.

The dual rear cameras on the iPhone XS are on the top left corner like its predecessor. It is an IP68 certified phone which means it can resist under 1.5 meters deep water for 30 minutes without any damage. It lacks the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack. Overall both the phones look quite attractive and now it's up to you whether you prefer the last year's edge-to-edge design of iPhone XS or go for the waterdrop notch design of Mate 20.


In the display department, iPhone XS OLED panel takes lead over the LCD panel of Mate 20. The iPhone XS comes with a 5.8-inches display with a screen resolution of 1125 x 2436 pixels. Although it's not as higher as Quad HD+ panels but still better than Full HD+ in the market. Undoubtedly it is one of the best OLED displays in the market thanks to its awesome colors accuracy, saturation, and deep blacks. The iPhone XS pixels density is 458 pixels-per-inch.

The Mate 20 sports a 6.53-inches display with Full HD+ screen resolution of 1080 x 2244 pixels. The display pixels density is 381 pixels-per-inch. Although the difference in the resolution isn't huge it lacks behind due to LCD panel. It can be regarded as one of the gigantic LCD panels with a good level of brightness but still, it isn't as good as OLED.

The iPhone XS display is 3D Touch pressure sensitive whereas the Mate 20 lacks such goodies. In terms of vividness, the iPhone XS certainly has an upper hand than the Mate 20.


Both the phones have the latest best in the market built on the 7nm FinFet process. In terms of performance both the phones are ultra fast and also future proof till Q4 next year. Both the phones are quite capable to handle HIFI games, heavy multi-tasking efficiently without any delay.

The iPhone XS A12 Bionic chipset benchmark showcases it has more grunt under the hood as opposed to Kirin 980 of Mate 20. The Kirin 980 is currently the latest best in the Android market whereas the A12 Bionic is the best in iOS running devices.

The Mate 20 can be grabbed in either 4GB or 6GB RAM variants with 128GB native storage. It supports memory expansion via NanoSD card. Huawei will be offering NanoSD cards in 128GB and 256GB but the pricing is still in dark. Most likely it will cost higher than the regular MicroSD cards. Apple brings 4GB RAM on board for the iPhone XS. The base model has 64GB storage, however, you can grab 256GB and 512GB variants by paying a hefty amount. Its native storage isn't expandable.

Specs Mate 20 iPhone XS
Display 6.53-inches 5.8-inches
Screen resolution 1080 x 2244 pixels 1125 x 2436 pixels
Chipset Kirin 980 A12 Bionic
Storage 128,256GB Expandable via NMcard 64, 256, 512GB Non-Expandable
Rear cameras 12+16MP+8MP Dual 12MP
Front camera


USB Type-C Lightning port
3.5mm headphone jack No No
Battery 4000mAh 2,658mAh
IP68 No Yes
Software Android Pie with EMUI 9 iOS 12


This year Huawei lead the camera-centric phones market with its P20 Pro. Despite being six months old the P20 Pro still has one of the best cameras in the market. For the Mate 20 series, Huawei ditched the monochrome sensor in favor of ultra-wide angle sensor. The Mate 20 has toned down triple rear cameras as opposed to the Mate 20 Pro.

The primary rear snapper is a wide-angle 12MP sensor with f/1.8 aperture, the secondary sensor is ultra-wide angle 16MP module with f/2.2 aperture. The third sensor is an 8MP telephoto sensor with f/2.4 aperture and a 2x optical zoom. The wide-angle and ultra wide-angle sensors have optical image stabilization. The camera setup on the Mate 20 isn't the best-in-class like the Mate 20 Pro still it is pretty much capable to capture great shots with punchy colors and significant details.

The iPhone XS has dual 12MP sensors on the rear side. The primary sensor is a normal lens with f/1.8 aperture whereas the secondary sensor is a telephoto lens with f/2.4 aperture and 2x optical zoom. One of the new feature introduced with the iPhone XS is now it allows the user to add bokeh effects even after capturing the shots.

The Smart HDR feature on the iPhone XS captures several shots simultaneously and then combines them to produce the one final result. The iPhone XS cameras setup is considered as one of the best cameras in the market. No matter which smartphone amongst the two you prefer you won't disappoint with the performance of either one.

Up front, the iPhone XS takes lead over the Mate 20 with its 3D facial recognition capabilities. The 7MP selfie camera is not only utilized for capturing selfies but also creating Animoji and Face ID as a primary biometric feature. On the other hand, the Mate 20 has a 24MP sensor on the front with f/2.0 aperture. It also brings facial recognition support but not as accurate and efficient like the Pro model.


The iPhone XS instead of bringing a larger battery than the predecessor it comes with slightly smaller 2,658mAH battery cell. It's enough to last one day on normal usage, however, on heavy usage, you may need to recharge it before bedtime. It supports fast and wireless charging tech but it isn't shipped with fast charger straight out of the box.

The Mate 20 lights are kept on by a gigantic 4,000mAH battery cell which last two days on normal and even on heavy usage it last more than one day. It comes with 22.5W charging setup which pops-up 40 to 45% battery in just 30 minutes.


As OS the iPhone XS is pre-installed with the iOS 12 straight out of the box. It will be receiving new software updates from Apple for the next three years. On the other hand, Mate 20 is one of the first phones in the market pre-installed with the latest Android Pie. The UI has EMUI 9 skin over the stock version of Android Pie. Although it is on the latest version it won't receive as fast updates as iPhone XS.


As far as pricing is a concern the iPhone XS is available at a price tag of $999 in the US like its predecessor. It is currently widely available across the globe whereas the Mate 20 was announced for €799 in Europe (£699 for UK buyers). However, Huawei made it clear it won't be officially released in the US but you can grab it from e-retailers.


The Mate 20 and iPhone XS both the phones are impressive in the design and camera department with one of the best metal and clad design and solid cameras setup. In the display department, the iPhone XS takes lead with its OLED display. The Mate 20 emerge as a better option in the battery and flexibility of memory expansion. Despite being a solid flagship the Mate 20 looks a bit overshadowed in front of the Pro model.

The difference in the pricing department could become a deciding aspect. The Mate 20 Pro is 300 pounds cheaper than the iPhone XS in the UK. However, the reduction of price removed goodies like wireless charging, IP68 certification, 3D facial recognition, better display, and longer software updates cycle. The Mate 20 will have to face stiff competition from other Chinese flagships which are available around $550 like Mi 8 Pro and OnePlus 6T.

In the end, we would like to hear our readers thoughts regarding the Mate 20 vs iPhone XS in the comment section below. Stay tuned for more comparisons in coming days.

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  • The Huawei Mate 20 isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.
  • The Apple iPhone XS isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.



Huawei Mate 20 vs Apple iPhone XS:
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