Battery Life - Impressive

Battery life is a fundamental characteristic of a smartphone, and something that Huawei seems to want to pay special attention to due to the CEO’s obsession with being personally fed up with smartphones running out of power.

The P20 comes with a 3400mAh battery while the P20 Pro sports a 17.6% larger 4000mAh unit. Both represent an improvement in terms of capacity when compared to the P10 (3200mAh) and the P10 Plus (3750mAh).

Web Browsing Battery Life 2016 (WiFi)

In the web browsing test both P20’s perform extremely well, topping the charts. While not quite reaching the Mate 9’s figures (due to its very efficient LCD), the P20 Pro outpaces all other modern smartphones that we’ve tested, coming in at 12.20 hours. The P20 also isn’t far behind at 10.66 hours.

PCMark Work 2.0 - Battery Life

In PCMark, the P20 Pro showcased some record figures coming in at 12.3h, beating all previous flagship devices. The smaller P20 also fares very well – but the LCD screen is holding back the device as PCMark’s overall lower APL seems to favour the P20 Pro’s OLED display a lot.

This is also an interesting juxtaposition between the P20 Pro and say, the Galaxy S9+ with the Snapdragon 845. Both have similar AMOLED screens and sizes, but the P20 Pro comes in at a 51% longer runtime, even though its battery capacity is only 14% bigger.

Compared to last year’s P10 – both P20’s mark significant improvements.

In general this perfectly showcases the balance that companies have to make when deciding between performance and battery life. Although the Kirin 970’s isn’t the greatest performer in 2018, it’s able to remain outstandingly efficient. The fact that the P20’s have larger batteries while maintaining slim form factors is just a bonus on top what is fundamentally a requirement of having an efficient SoC and device platform.

Over my time with testing the device I did notice a catch in the battery life of the P20s – both seem to have less than impressive idle standby times, however given the overall outstanding on-screen battery results, this should be of no particular concern to everyday users.

Display Evaluation & Power Camera - Daylight Evaluation
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  • Vishnu NS - Friday, June 15, 2018 - link

    Andrei - I have the Mate 9 and I get regular monthly security updates. I just got my June 2018 update yesterday. Cheers! Love the review, strongly eyeing the Mate 10 Pro at $549 on Amazon currently. Also awaiting the Pixel 3 XL release later this year before making a new purchase.

    Regards,
    Vish
    Reply
  • chocolatine - Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - link

    My P10+ (in France) has the may 2018 security patches (and Android 8). Using the HiSuite software updater while your phone is plugged in your computer works much better than using the system update menu of the phone Reply
  • amouses - Friday, June 15, 2018 - link

    The Mate10 is supported by Project Treble. And so swifter updates are possible. But so such assurance has been given for any P20 variant. I've repeatedly asked Huawei via official and unofficial forums. You will also notice that Huawei was absent from the Android P Beta programme. Not a good sign. Reply
  • eastcoast_pete - Friday, June 15, 2018 - link

    Thanks Andrei! While some other commentators here seem to have had luck getting updates for their Huawei phones, my experience mirrors yours - spotty or no updates. Would love to hear that they are fully committed to timely updates and longer-term support for their phones. Reply
  • sonicmerlin - Sunday, June 17, 2018 - link

    Don't these come with Project Treble? Shouldn't that make updating far easier? Reply
  • mmrezaie - Sunday, June 17, 2018 - link

    It doesn't on my Motorola! It is still on Android 8.0 and security update from Feb. I think I have got only three updates since it got introduced as one of the first Project Terrible phones. Pun intended. Reply
  • Round - Tuesday, June 26, 2018 - link

    I'm sure Huawei will release updates as soon as they get an approved version from the communist government or the PLA, that has improved tracking apps built in at the OS level. You can trust these guys, along with their friends at ZTE, another stalwart of honesty and integrity. Reply
  • Lodix - Friday, June 15, 2018 - link

    Nice review.

    I noticed the Xiaomi Mi Mix2s has the same problems in terms of GPU throttling as the S9+. Do you know what is causing this behaviour?
    Reply
  • Andrei Frumusanu - Friday, June 15, 2018 - link

    It's just the behaviour of S845 devices it seems - the MIX 2S review will be a separate piece after this. Reply
  • ZolaIII - Friday, June 15, 2018 - link

    Probably the step into right direction. Xiaomi uses CAF defaults this day's & yes they are very aggressive.
    To answer the question;
    The A75's are about 50% larger more power hungry compared to the A73's both SoC's are made on the 10 nm Samsung FinFET while later one (S845) is made on more optimised one which is let's say capable of saving around 20% power compared to the early one. The S845 is also clocked hire and all do it's only 12~13% those eat additional 25~30% more power. The all FinFET structures leak insanely when the around 2.1~2.2GHz limit is crossed so more than that should be used for short bursts and only when really needed. In the end we have 1.5~1.6x CPU power consumption while sustainable power limit remains the same 2.5~2.7W. This is enough to diminish the A630 efficiency/performance/proces advantages of around 30% combined. Their is no hotpluging in user space whatsoever on any newer Snapdragon SoC's/builds (since removing the Core_ctl a year ago) which can help a lot regarding sustainable GPU performance. At the end it's at least easy to play with Kirin regarding limiting the CPU frequency scheduling as it uses good old interactive governor & I am certain it will be very beneficial regarding GPU through.

    Best regards.
    Reply

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