We got a preview of Huawei's new flagship smartphone, the P30 Pro. Here's what we thought.

Shona Ghosh/Business InsiderHuawei P30 Pro.
  • Huawei’s new flagship smartphones, the P30 and P30 Pro, go on sale on Tuesday.
  • The biggest updates are to the camera on the P30 Pro, which has an impressive four-camera setup on the rear of the device.
  • We had a couple of hours with the P30 and the P30 Pro and were impressed with what we saw.

Huawei, the second-biggest phone maker in the world behind Samsung, has added two new flagship phones to its P series of devices – the P30 and the P30 Pro.

Huawei unveiled both devices at an event in Paris on Tuesday, but we managed to get some hands-on time with both devices at a preview event last week. We’ll focus on the P30 Pro for this hands-on, since it packs the most exciting new features.

Both models are an upgrade on last year’s P20 and P20 Pro, with the latter receiving rave reviews thank its AI-powered camera.

It isn’t clear that there’s enough in the new devices to tempt a P20 owner to upgrade after so short a time, but there are some eye-catching new features on the P30 Pro – not least the intriguing screen vibration technology, which replaces the conventional earpiece, plus the fact the phone has an astonishing four-camera array.

Both phones look absolutely beautiful too, with curved glass screens and iridescent designs.

Here’s what we thought after a quick play with the P30 Pro. It’s worth noting that we only spent a couple of hours with the phone, and we’ll eventually be posting a more in-depth hands-on review.

The Huawei P30 Pro starts at £899 ($US1,187) for 8GB RAM and 128GB of storage, while the P30 starts at £699 ($US923) for 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.

This is the P30 Pro. The iridescent design — which Huawei refers to as “pearlescence” — is beautiful, but presumably would remain hidden under your phone cover.

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The curved glass back and front look stunning, and the phone feels comfortable and premium in the hand, if a little on the large side.

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The design of the P30 Pro looks more refined than its predecessor.

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Huawei has reduced the original clunky notch of the P20 Pro to a neat, teardrop shape to house the 32-megapixel front camera.

The P30 Pro also ditches the familiar home button, allowing for more screen real estate.

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The P30 Pro comes with a 6.47-inch OLED, FHD+, FullView display, and a 19:5:9 aspect ratio.

The screen embeds an under-screen fingerprint scanner too.

If you like your phone to fit in one hand, this won’t be the device for you. The P30 is more comfortable in this regard, with a 6.1-inch display.

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There’s no headphone jack. That isn’t a major surprise, given Huawei dropped the headphone jack with the P20 Pro.

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There’s no earpiece on the P30 Pro, because the screen vibrates to transmit call audio.

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When you hold the P30 Pro up to your ear to take the call, the sound will transmit through screen vibrations rather than the usual call speaker.

Huawei has ditched the call speaker altogether, saying that its new system means less audio leakage. In other words, it will be harder for someone to eavesdrop on your calls. We didn’t get a chance to try this feature out, but it sounds pretty intriguing.

There’s an impressive four rear cameras, although it’s worth noting this many sensors adds some bulk to the back.

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Huawei has always been known for its impressive camera technology, thanks to its partnership with Leica.

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The top sensor is a 40-megapixel “SuperSpectrum” lens, which Huawei says can take in substantially more light for sharper photos.

The second lens is a 20-megapixel wide-angle lens.

The third is an 8-megapixel telephoto lens, with 5x optical periscope zoom, and 10x hybrid zoom.

The fourth lens is located off to one side, and is a time of flight sensor to measure depth.

We briefly played with the camera, and it was indeed impressive in a low-light setting.

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We didn’t get a chance to test out night mode on the P30 Pro, but Huawei says it’s a substantial improvement on the P20 Pro.

In another upgrade on the P20 Pro, the P30 Pro supports wireless charging, as well as reverse wireless charging, which lets the device charge other phones placed on its rear.

The P30 Pro runs on Android 9 Pie and Huawei’s flagship Kirin 980 chipset, features a 4,200mAh battery and can charge up to 70% in half an hour on a wired charge.

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