Huawei P20 vs P20 Pro: What's the rumoured difference?

Huawei is preparing to launch its next handset as it continues to fight for smartphone dominance across the globe. Launching on 27 March, Huawei will be announcing the P20 and it will be coming in a number of different versions.

While the Huawei P20 Lite is a mid-range phone, the real battle for your cash will be between the P20 and the P20 Pro. Both have leaked extensively, so we have a good idea about what these phones will offer. 

This is the Huawei P20 vs Huawei P20 Pro.

Huawei P20 vs P20 Pro: Design

  • Similar visual designs on both
  • Huawei P20 Pro is larger
  • P20 Pro gets unique colour gradation
  • P20 Pro rumoured to have IP68 protection

To look at, the Huawei P20 and the P20 Pro have a very similar design. Firstly, both have a fullscreen display on the front, incorporating a notch at the top like the iPhone X. That means very little bezel on these phones, but both still have a fingerprint scanner on the front. 

The rear of the phone is rumoured to be glass and to come in a number of different colours – which have all extensively leaked. The most interesting is the graduated purple and blue design which is likely to be unique to the P20 Pro. The P20 Pro is also rumoured to be IP68 protected.

We don’t know the actual dimensions of these devices, but with 18:9 aspect (or similar) displays, they shouldn’t be too wide. Judging by the leaked photos, they’re both going to be very thin too. 

In terms of design, there’s little between these phones – apart from that unique colour, you can pick put the P20 Pro by the third camera lens on the rear. 

  • Huawei P20 and P20 Pro: Specs, release date and everything you need to know 

Huawei P20 vs P20 Pro: Display

  • P20: 5.8-inch, FHD+, LCD
  • P20 Pro: 6.1-inch, FHD+, OLED

The biggest thing about the display will be the bezel-less approach, pushing the top down to that central notch that houses the front camera and sensors. That’s going to be the defining feature of this phone, not just because it apes the iPhone X’s design. 

Rumours have suggested that the Huawei P20 has a 5.8-inch display while the P20 Pro moves to 6.1-inches. That might sound large, but with an 18:9 display (approximately, we don’t know the precise aspect), these phones are following the industry in offering you a taller-not-wider display. 

The resolution of these displays hasn’t been so firmly leaked, but rumours haven’t suggested a move to Quad HD. That will probably see these phones both offer a FHD+ display. The P20 Lite is said to be around 2240 x 1080 pixels, so we might see that on the P20 models too.

There is a rumour, however, that the technology in these displays will be different. The P20 Pro is said to get an OLED display, which will give it a premium lift, while the regular P20 is said to remain with LCD, which has been the norm for Huawei over the past few years.

Huawei P20 vs P20 Pro: Hardware specs 

  • HiSilicon Kirin 970 in both
  • P20 Pro gets 6GB RAM
  • Both have 128GB storage but no microSD
  • P20 Pro gets massive 4000mAh battery

The hardware that these new Huawei phones runs on likely to be the Kirin 970 – as found in the Mate 10 Pro. This is a platform that’s said to have a leaning toward AI, while delivering power to rival other flagship devices. We’ve certainly been impressed with the Mate 10 Pro. 

There’s reported to be a difference in the RAM, with the P20 getting 4GB and the P20 Pro seeing a boost to 6GB, fitting its Pro badging.

On the storage front, rumours have suggested that both these phones will come with 128GB of storage as standard, but will take a hit by losing the microSD expansion.

On the battery capacities, the larger phone gets a larger battery, but if the 4000mAh for the P20 Pro is true, it will likely make a lot of people happy. The P20 is meanwhile said to offer a 3320mAh cell. Both should offer fast charging via the USB Type-C connection. 

It’s here were Huawei has the chance to better the Samsung Galaxy S9, which isn’t so hot on battery life.

  • Huawei Mate 10 Pro review: A flagship to take on the best of them

Huawei P20 vs P20 Pro: Camera

  • P20 Pro gets triple camera system
  • P20 gets dual camera system

The biggest leaks surrounding the Huawei P20 Pro camera focus on the fact that it has a triple camera system. These are said to be 40MP, 20MP and 8MP. It’s said that the 8MP camera provides 3x optical zoom. 

The division of the other cameras isn’t quite clear, but we suspect a system that combines RGB and monochrome as with previous Leica cameras on Huawei phones. With the 20MP camera previously being monochrome, that leaves the 40MP camera as the main colour sensor. 

The Huawei P20 hasn’t had the same number of detailed leaks as the Pro, but we can see it carried a twin Leica camera setup and rumours have mentioned an f/1.6 aperture and laser autofocusing, but little more is clear. Whether it has the same dual cameras as the P20 Pro remains unknown.

There’s been talk of a 24-megapixel front-facing camera on the Pro, we’re not sure if this is on the regular P20 too.

Huawei P20 vs P20 Pro: Software 

  • Android Oreo with EMUI 

On the software front – the thing that really defines the experience of the phone – it’s been reported that the P20 models will launch with Android Oreo. That’s no surprise seeing as the Mate 10 Pro was one of the first to launch with Oreo too. 

We’d expect a layering of EMUI over the top, bringing with it a wide range of visual changes and we expect the experience to be similar to previous Huawei models. You can expect a range of AI elements – something that Huawei has been teasing in its campaign to promote the new P20. 

Huawei P20 vs P20 Pro: Price and conclusions 

  • P20: €679
  • P20 Pro: €899 

Leaked pricing has suggested that the P20 and P20 Pro are very much in flagship price brackets. The Huawei P20 price is said to be €679 while the Huawei P20 Pro price is €899. These have not been confirmed and we don’t have UK pricing for these handsets, but we do know that Vodafone is going to be offering them. 

That €899 price for the P20 Pro brings it in cheaper than the Samsung Galaxy S9+, which is around €949 for the 64GB version, but Huawei will really have to prove itself with the camera experience to be seen as worth that high asking price. 

The Huawei P20 retains a little more appeal with its cheaper price. Both should offer similar day-to-day performance, although the P20 Pro potentially has a more vibrant display, more capable camera and better battery life. Whether that’s worth the high price is something we’ll be looking at in our Huawei P20 Pro review when it finally launches.

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