Yesterday, we brought you hands-on coverage of Huawei’s latest flagship smartphone from the launch event in London. Lighting wasn’t fantastic, but our initial thoughts were general positive towards the Chinese manufacturer’s latest high-end, elegant, glass and metal device. Now, we have the retail packaging, and couldn’t resist shooting an unboxing.
As has become a trend in recent years, Huawei‘s packaging is very attractive. The simple white box has nothing but Huawei and LEICA’s branding embossed on the canvas-like textured exterior. Lift the lid, and the device sits in its own shallow cradle, wrapped in protective film.
Underneath this top layer, there are three separate, clean white boxes with minimally-designed icons showing you what’s in them. As you’d expect, these contain the power adapter, USB A to Type-C cable and the EarPod clones.
The larger of the boxes I assume will include the ejector tool and the paperwork once the devices launches. Mine was completely empty, devoid of any quick start guides or warranty info.
But then we get to the phone itself, and can jump straight to the most important feature: The camera. This is a dual camera 12MP setup built in conjunction with LEICA, and features a dual LED flash and laser autofocus, and has both a true monochrome sensor and an RGB/Color sensor.
The front of the device is covered in a gorgeous, single sheet of glass which gently curves towards the edge. The bottom edge features the Type C connector, loudspeaker, 3.5mm jack and microphone, while the right edge has the recessed, textured power button underneath the volume rocker. There’s nothing but a noise-cancelling microphone on the top edge, and the left edge plays home to the SIM/SD card slot.
Although Huawei showed off the Dual SIM tray with a SIM 2 slot which doubles to offer space for a MicroSD card, this particular model didn’t have that tray. Instead, it’s equipped with a tray which hosts just one nano SIM and a MicroSD card.
After going through the usual set up options, I went though the security set up, which includes fingerprint settings. This is one of the fastest and most accurate fingerprint scanners around. Setting up only required 5-6 presses on the sensor to record my full fingerprint. Once registered, it detects and unlocks the phone incredibly quickly.
On the software front there’s the familiar app drawer-less user interface with the two-screen notification shade which drops down from the bottom. It also has the ‘magazine’ lock screen and downloadable themes. But more important than all of that is the LEICA camera software which gives you really intuitive access to manual controls for focus, white balance, exposure, shutter speed etc.
One notable software feature is that the fingerprint sensor on the back can also be used to control certain elements of the UI. You can use it to snap a photograph by tapping or to swipe through images in the gallery.
Spec-wise, we’re looking at a device with a full HD 5.2-inch display, powered by a Kirin 955 processor with 3GB RAM and 32GB storage. Although there is a 4GB/64GB storage model. It has a 3000mAh battery and rapid charging support, and Huawei claims I’ll get through a day’s use without even trying.
Exactly how well it holds up in every day use is yet to be seen, but we’ll have a full review for you here at 9to5Google next week.