If you’re bored of the same old monotone/metallic smartphone color choices, Chinese mobile maker Huawei has been thinking a little differently for its just announced P10 and P10 Plus flagship handsets — and is offering a spectrum of shades, including a striking deep blue option and a pale green.
Which mostly underlines how tricky it is for Android OEMs to stand out in such a packed and competitive space these days where phone buyers really are spoilt for choice.
As well as colorful hardware, Huawei also talked up software themes customized for each of the external shades. There’s also three different hardware finishes available, from high gloss to a more textured-look sandblast.
Elsewhere you’d be hard pressed to distinguish these high end Androids from scores of others. Which is really a comment on the incremental nature of smartphone innovation these days. Essentially hardware quality is very high across the board now, even as software differences have shrunk. The days of clunky Android skins are thankfully in the past.
Aside from some eye-catching colors, other features flagged by the world’s third largest smartphone maker during its press conference here at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona included camera tech, with Huawei continuing to lean on a Leica-branded partnership that lets users do things like style photos to have a Leica-ish film look.
It’s also been working with GoPro for a mobile editing tool called Highlights that lets users mix images and video with transitions and music.
Both devices have dual lenses on the rear, a 20MP monochrome and 12MP RGB lens, to support photo-processing features such as a bokeh effect that blurs the background. The Plus also gets boosted low light performance thanks to an f1.8 aperture lens.
Huawei also talked up a selfie feature for the front-facing lens which automatically adjusts to fit more than one person in a shot — handy if you’re trying to get a well composed group shot.
It also noted “no camera bump at all” — a little side-swipe at the iPhone’s ongoing lens bump.
The P10 has a 5.1inch screen but Huawei touted a “super narrow bezel” which allows for a “compact design” and dimensions that are “similar to the iPhone” — while also packing a larger battery. The larger P10 Plus has a 5.5in screen, is a little wider but no thicker.
Huawei also notes it has incorporated the fingerprint sensor directly into the front screen, removing the navigation bar to make yet more screen space.
Both devices are also apparently waterproof. And have fast-charging technology — it touted a full day’s usage off of 30-minutes of charging.
Despite rumors of the company working on its own voice assistant, Huawei did not dwell on voice assistants during the presentation (despite also announcing an Amazon Alexa-loaded phone at CES). So if it’s cooking something up there, it’s not yet ready to load it onto its flagships.
Notably it’s also not clear whether the new flagships are coming to the US. They certainly are not going to be available in the first wave, with the handsets listed to come to a wide variety of countries in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, South American, South Africa and Australia from this March — but not, apparently, to the US. We’ve asked whether there will be a release and will update this story with any response. Update: Huawei has confirmed the device will not be sold in the US.
Pricing wise, in Europe the P10 starts at €649, while the P10 Plus starts at €699.