For a while we've been seeing leaks about Huawei's next upcoming smartphone: the Mate 20. Today Huawei has announced a brand new phone for people to buy. It's not the Mate 20, it's actually the Mate 20 Lite. The idea is, like many less popular smartphone companies, that the Mate 20 Lite offers a premium smartphone experience without any of the annoyingly high pricetags associated with them.
As ever with Huawei phones, the big focuses are on AI, photography, and the combination of the two. That's why it's including the AI assistance features in the camera, letting users make sure they get the best possible photos without necessarily having to understand all the finer points about the settings and other factors. To make sure the pictures come out, regardless of what you're doing, AI has been added to the front and rear camera systems.
Both sides have a dual camera system, with the secondary 2MP lens offering depth features that let you do fancy things like the bokeh effects found in portrait modes, and so on. The main photo-shooting is done by the main lens, with the front offering 24MP resolution and the rear offering a slightly lower 20MP.
Also included in the AI systems are an AI shopping features, which will use the camera to scan products and direct you to a relevant shopfront online. On top of that we have AI noise cancellation, for higher quality calls, AI-powered photo galleries (much like Google Photos), and AI Game Suite that can identify your gaming needs and compensate for them. That last one is in addition to Huawei's GPU Turbo, which can boost graphical power while also reducing battery life.
As for the rest of the specs, the phone comes with a 6.3-inch 19.5:9 Full HD+ notched display, 3,750mAh battery, Huawei's Kirin 710 processor, fast charging, 480fps slow-mo, face unlock, 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, microSD expansion (up to 256GB), a 3.5mm headphone jack, Huawei's Histen 3D Surround Sound system, as well as Android 8.1. It would be better if it was Android Pie at this point, but it's not like Huawei is the only company that isn't so forthcoming with Google's updates. Also, while the Mate 20 Lite has a glass back, there's been no word of whether it has wireless charging so I wouldn't count on it.
The Mate 20 Lite goes on sale next Wednesday for £379, and will be available from Carphone Warehouse and Vodafone. It will also be available from EE some time in October, but an exact date has yet to be announced. No word on the fully-fledged Mate 20 just yet, but if last year's Mate 10 launch is anything to go by the Mate 20 Lite is the precursor to a larger device that has confirmed for announcement on 16th October.