The Huawei Mate 10 is the smaller sibling of the Huawei Mate 10 Pro, but it's still a fine phone in its own right.
- Dual-lens camera with solid performance
- Kirin 970 processor gives good performance
- Attractive design
- Few apps make use of the neural processor
- Better features in the Mate 10 Pro
Huawei Mate 10 review
When did the Huawei Mate 10 come out? Available in Australia from 15 November 2017.
What’s new about the Huawei Mate 10? Kirin 970 CPU with NPU, dual-lens Leica camera, enhanced Emotion UI.
How much does the Huawei Mate 10 cost? $899 outright.
The Huawei Mate 10 is a fine premium phone, although as the smaller sibling to the Mate 10 Pro, it's hard not to see it as a lesser handset.
While Huawei produces a significant quantity of budget and mid-range phones, it has two primary "premium" phone lines in the form of the fashion-led P series, typically announced at or around Mobile World Congress and the more phablet-formed Mate series, usually announced in the October/November timeframe.
Huawei also produces a Porsche Design version of the Mate 9, but that phone was not officially sold in Australia.
- Simple, stylish design.
- Lacks water resistance.
The Mate 10 is a 5.9-inch handset, although it's not the largest Mate 10 this year, as it's ever so slightly smaller than the Huawei Mate 10 Pro. That puts it in the company of contemporary handsets such as the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.
The one feature that Huawei has never particularly pushed with its premium handsets has been the question of outright water resistance.
It has become more and more of a feature of premium phones and we did note on a recent tour of Huawei's device testing labs (as shown above) that it's something Huawei can test for. However, the Mate 10 lacks specific water resistance, even though it's a feature on the Mate 10 Pro.Back to top
- Dual Leica lenses plus AI.
Huawei has made considerable progress in the camera space thanks to its tie-up with Leica for the Huawei P9, Mate 9, P10 and P10 Plus and it certainly didn't slow down for the Huawei Mate 10.
The Mate 10 sports dual cameras, specifically 20MP monochrome/12MP Dual f/1.6 lenses at the rear. The Mate 10's party piece is the inclusion of scene detection thanks to the Neural Processing Unit (NPU), with 13 automatically detected scenes including dog, cat and food photography settings.
In our tests with the Huawei Mate 10 Pro, we found the AI settings produced generally pleasing results, although without a doubt photo pros will prefer to use the Mate 10's manual settings rather than let the handset decide.Back to top
- Kirin 970 delivers solid application performance.
- Few apps take full advantage of the NPU.
Where most other vendors opt for a processor solution from providers such as Qualcomm or MediaTek, Huawei produces its own premium silicon for its own phones. For the Mate 10 and its sibling phones, Huawei produced the tantalising sounding Kirin 970.
At the IFA 2017 conference in Berlin, Huawei CEO Richard Yu unveiled the Kirin 970 with a particular focus on artificial intelligence. Kirin 970 packs in a 12-core CPU alongside a 12-core CPU using a 10nm process, with the NPU to handle AI tasks.
Huawei wants to pitch the Kirin 970 as an "open" AI platform leveraging the power of the chipset itself as well as cloud-based AI to more efficiently operate and the overall claim, according to Huawei, is that it will outclass every other phone on the market.
The short version is that Huawei's Mate phones have always delivered plenty of power for performance users. On the software side, the Mate 10 will run on Android 8.0 ("Oreo") with an updated version of Huawei's "Emotion UI" launcher on top.
In benchmark terms, here's how the Kirin 970 found in the Huawei Mate 10 Pro compared against contemporary handsets of its time.
Handset Geekbench 4 CPU Single Core (higher is better) Geekbench 4 CPU Multi Core (higher is better) Apple iPhone X 4185 10319 Apple iPhone 8 4270 10272 Apple iPhone 8 Plus 4113 10221 Huawei Mate 10 1888 6787 Samsung Galaxy S8+ 2020 6690 Samsung Galaxy S8 1989 6628 Huawei P10 Plus 1863 6544 Nokia 8 1932 6529 OnePlus 5 1976 6506 Samsung Galaxy Note 8 2024 6490 HTC U11 1919 6362 Sony Xperia XZ Premium 1908 6324 Google Pixel 2 XL 1914 6254
Here's where it stands using 3DMark's Ice Storm Unlimited test:
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Handset 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited Result Apple iPhone 8 64461 Apple iPhone X 61256 Apple iPhone 8 Plus 59205 HTC U11 40239 Sony Xperia XZ Premium 40086 Google Pixel 2 XL 39551 OnePlus 5 39497 Samsung Galaxy Note 8 32277 Huawei Mate 10 30765
- 4,000mAh battery.
The Mate 10 charges its 4,000mAh battery via USB-C.
Huawei has its own standard for fast charging, dubbed "SuperCharge". Huawei recently announced a partnership with TÜV Rheinland for safety checking of its SuperCharge technology, including safety, low temperature and thermal shock tests.
Charging and battery safety has been something of a sore point for larger phones in the light of the Samsung Note 7 fiasco and while that wasn't a phone of Huawei's making, it's clearly taking phone charging seriously.
That being said, testing with the Mate 10 Pro showed that its battery life was only mid-range for a premium 2017 handset.Back to top
- Worthwhile if you can get it at a bargain price.
Huawei has been pushing the value equation hard in recent years with its premium smartphones and while the Mate 10 does have its limitations, it's a fine handset for the most part. Huawei itself has produced newer handsets in the meantime, such as the Huawei P20 and Huawei P20 Pro and that does mean that if you're Huawei Mate 10 shopping, you should definitely be chasing a bargain price on it. At its full original retail price you're way too close to newer and more powerful handsets.Back to top
Pricing and availability
Huawei Mate 10
Huawei's business-capable handset
The Huawei Mate 10 offers no-nonsense style and excellent dual cameras. It's available to buy outright or on contract through Vodafone
- The Huawei Mate 10 sells outright for $899.
- The Huawei Mate 10 is also available from Vodafone on contract plan terms.
Huawei Mate 10 specs
OS Android 8 Display size (inches) 5.9 Display resolution (pixels) 2560 x 1440 Pixels per inch (PPI) 499 Processor Kirin 970 Height (mm) 150.5 Width (mm) 77.8 Depth (mm) 8.2 Weight (g) 186 Battery size (mAh) 4,000 Wireless charging No
Internal storage 64GB
MicroSD expansion 256GB Fingerprint scanner Yes RAM 4 Water resistance IP53 Rear camera (1) resolution 12 Rear camera (1) aperture f/1.6 Rear camera (2) resolution 20 Rear camera (2) aperture Rear camera (3) resolution Rear camera (3) aperture Front camera (1) resolution 8 Front camera (1) aperture f/2.0 Front camera (2) resolution Front camera (2) aperture Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac Network category speed Category 16 NFC support Yes
SIM plans for the Huawei Mate 10
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