Huawei Mate 20 Review: Is It A Good Budget Phone?

If you’re looking for a solid and reliable budget phone then we might just have the answer for you. There are so many phones to choose from these days and it’s easy to think that the latest and greatest are the best options for you. However, with so many previous generations being discounted every time a new phone is released, you can pick up a bargain.

In this post, we’ll be looking at if the Huawei Mate 20 is a good budget phone or not. Huawei has long been known for its flagship and mid-range phones with crazy specs and lower price tag. This time is no different. The Huawei Mate 20 is a tough rival on the field.

Now the Huawei Mate 20 is 2 years old, we’ll look at whether it’s a good option for you in 2021 and beyond.

Overview

The Huawei Mate 20 was released in 2018 and was positioned between the Pro version and the Huawei Mate 20 lite version. The lite version is not too dissimilar to the Huawei Mate 20 as it has a screen size of just 2 smaller. However, the Huawei Mate 20 has more storage of 128GB making it a great all-around smartphone for entertainment and photo/video recording. The pro version comes in with a better screen resolution and battery but the mid-table phone holds its own against it and is the truest version of the long-loved Huawei style.

Specifications

  • Size: 6.5 inches
  • Resolution: 2244 x 1080 pixels, 18.7:9 ratio, 381 PPI
  • Features: HDR video support, Ambient light sensor, Proximity sensor
  • System chip: HiSilicon Kirin 980
  • Processor: Octa-core, 2600 MHz, ARM Cortex-A76 and ARM Cortex-A55, 64-bit, 7 nm
  • GPU: Mali-G76 MP10
  • RAM: 4GB LPDDR4
  • Internal storage: 128GB
  • Storage expansion: Nano Memory (NM) up to 256 GB
  • OS: Android (9.0 Pie), Huawei Emotion UI
  • Main camera: 12 MP (OIS, Laser and PDAF)
  • Second camera: 16 MP (Ultra-wide, Laser and PDAF)
  • Third camera: 8 MP (Telephoto, Laser and PDAF)
  • Specifications: Optical zoom: 2x; Aperture size: F2.4; Focal Length: 52 mm; Sensor size: 1/4″
  • Video recording: 3840×2160 (4K UHD) (30 fps), 1920×1080 (Full HD) (120 fps), 1280×720 (HD) (960 fps)
  • Features: Time-lapse video, Picture-taking during video recording, Video light, EIS, Video calling, Video sharing
  • Dimensions: n6.23 x 3.04 x 0.33 inches (158.2 x 77.2 x 8.3 mm)
  • Weight: 6.63 oz (188.0 g)

Design

The Huawei Mate 20 was the best Huawei ever released back in 2018 and it still looks stunning today. The screen is a huge 6.5 inches. The actual frame of the Huawei Mate 20 is a firm, thin metal finished off with a flat glass screen. The flat edges make it much easier to text on than a curved edge phone and the simplicity of its design only adds to its beauty.

The screen actually comes with a pre-fitted gorilla glass case so this is going to be one of the most robust phones out there without having a case on. The Huawei Mate 20 has a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner which sits next to the 3 camera setup on the rear side. The fact that the main camera is situated in the middle of the phone in a square shape gives this phone a lot of character.

Interestingly, the Huawei Mate 20 has a larger screen than the Pro version but it isn’t dust and splash resistant whereas the Huawei Mate 20 Pro is. Still, the Huawei Mate 20 does everything that the Pro version can under the hood for a fraction of the price.

Another reason why you might want to go for the Huawei Mate 20 over the pro version is that it has a headphone jack whereas the Pro, more expensive version, does not! This should be something you’d expect from your phone but we’re seeing headphone jack’s being phased out.

The Pro version has dongle-like wireless headphones that come with it instead but this seems to only up the price whereas we find most people would like the option of having a headphone jack on their phones still. 

The Huawei Mate 20 comes in a range of colours including; black, green, gold and blue.

Display Screen

The Huawei Mate 20 has a stunning screen resolution with 1920×1080 Full HD which is still impressive but this is where it lags behind the Pro version which boasts a screen resolution of 1440 x 3120. Still, the screen is massive and flat which makes it a perfect media device. You can prop it up and watch your favorite shows without straining your eyes. 

Sure, it’s not the sharpest picture but that shouldn’t bother you too much considering it’s much cheaper than many phones like it on the market. The good news is, you can actually record in 4K which makes this phone a great phone for recording videos for YouTube on. It won’t break the bank but it will still record in 4K res.

Performance

The Huawei Mate 20 runs on the Octa-core processor which made it one of the fastest phones on release. However, it’s still super powerful and will keep your phone going. This phone is not only powerful and fast but it’s also great at effectively using power from its 4000 mAH battery. 

I actually used to personally own this phone and bought it upon release. One thing I loved about this phone was its battery life. I could watch YouTube videos for an hour at lunchtime, make several calls and texts throughout the day and most of the time the battery life would still be hovering around 60% after a full days use (9 hours).

The main camera is 12MP with a second 16MP camera and a third 8MP camera. The Huawei Mate 20 may not have the sharpest of display screens but it has a world-class camera that has great exposure and range. Every photo you take will come out perfectly.

Huawei Mate 20 Price

The Huawei Mate 20 is a great mid-range phone because it is not only fast, can take great photos, has a great battery life but it’s also really affordable compared to some of the latest phones on the market. Now, Huawei no longer sells this model on its website but we found some great deals on eBay for unlocked handsets starting at $285!

Personally, I think the Huawei Mate 20 is still a solid option if you want a phone that can take great pictures, have enough juice to get you through the day, and won’t cost a fortune but will last a long time thanks to a well-protected screen.

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