Huawei P10 in the test

Huawei P10 im Test: Ein seltenes Top-Smartphone im kompakten Format

The P10 is the second dual-camera flagship developed in cooperation with Leica in the compact class of Huawei. In the test of the P10, Huawei proves that a very good smartphone does not have to be 5.5 inches or even larger. The P10 offers a top package on a pleasantly compact 5 inch for the price of 599 euros.

Table of Contents
1Huawei P10 in test: A small Mate 9
The new design is rounder
5.1 inch display with Full HD
Dual camera with Leica lenses
HiSilicon Kirin 960 and EMUI 5.1
Long running times and fast loading
Fast WLAN at short distance
Huawei P10 Specifications
Huawei P10 test: A small Mate 9

The new Huawei P10 continues the second generation of the dual camera, which was developed in cooperation with Leica, in the P9 (test). Huawei also has the rest of the hardware undergone a complete refresher and now with the fast Kirin 960 processor provides the equipment of the Mate 9 (test). All this packs Huawei into a smartphone, which with 5.1-inch display is an Exot in the Android range. This is because compact flagship ships are now being looked for in this segment in vain.

The new design is rounder

The Huawei P10 is not only smaller than other Android top models, it is also slightly smaller than the two direct predecessors P9 and P8. Where can you find new smartphones that are smaller than their predecessors today? The P10 comes to 69.3 × 145.3 × 6.98 millimeters, the front of the smartphone occupies just over 71 percent the 5.1-inch display. The P9 and P8 were still 5.2 inches.

Better still no Huawei smartphone processed

The P10 is the huawei high-quality smartphone so far, although earlier devices were already very well processed. The production tolerances are now even lower, so that even in the case of filigree components, such as the antenna integrated into the aluminum, no transitions can be felt. The P10 is the new Huawei scale.

Neues Antennen-Band
New Antenna Band
Klinke, USB Typ C und Lautsprecher
Jack, USB type C and loudspeaker

The silver test device has a slightly roughened, matte surface, which is comfortable in the hand. Huawei has enlarged the case for the P10, the radii of the four corners and the back are larger, the device is less angular and is slightly better in the hand than the P9. However, the new design can not be compared with the iPhone. The camera neckline with the Leica logo gives the back of the P10 a certain independence.

The fingerprint sensor is now at the front

Displaced is the fingerprint sensor of the back. Huawei has moved the new model under the display for the new model. In everyday life this is the most practical place when the smartphone is on the table. The fingerprint sensor, on the other hand, was the better option, in particular, when pulling out of the trouser pocket. Extremely impressive is how fast the fingerprint sensor of the P10 responds to inputs.

The new button layout is confused

A little confusing is that Huawei has not also placed two capacitive buttons left and right of the sensor. By default, the P10 uses software buttons, which, however, can be deactivated in the options and can be exchanged for one-button operation via the fingerprint sensor. Long hold then leads to the homescreen, briefly tapping a level back and wipe from right to left to view open apps. In short: confusing! The new layout disturbs everyday life.

5.1 inch display with Full HD

Especially with the silver model, whose front is held in white, it is easy to see that Huawei could reduce the display frame from the P9 perceptibly. With the black version of the P10, this is less noticeable. Not only the lateral distance to the housing has shrunk, but also the black interior frame of the glass pane, before the actual display begins, has become smaller.

Das IPS-Panel hat 5,1 Zoll mit Full-HD-Auflösung
The IPS panel has 5.1 inches with full HD resolution

Slight weakness in homogeneity

The IPS display in the P10 measures 5.1 inches and offers 1,920 × 1,080 pixels, which ensures a high pixel density of 432 ppi and a sharp display from a normal viewing distance. The display performs particularly well at the maximum brightness, which is determined from three measuring ranges at 573 cd / m². On the other hand, the brightness distribution is a bit annoying, because the display is at the top up to 621 cd / m², at the bottom but only at 525 cd / m². The homogeneity might be better.

The brightness of the browser is reduced

Annoying is that the P10 is pre-installed in the browser Chrome – does not hold the adjusted brightness. This is probably a power-off function, but it can not be switched off. In Chrome, the brightness of 200 cd / ², adjusted for battery measurements, is reduced to just 110 cd / m².

Good sharpness in detail

Gute Schärfe im Detail
Gute Schärfe im Detail
Schwarzer Displayrand
Black display edge

Huawei-typical, the white point of the display has a slight shift towards blue, which can be corrected by the user in the display settings. The overall quality of the display is still very high. The IPS panel offers good viewing angles, rich colors and achieves a high contrast of over 1,500: 1 with a low black level.

Dual camera with Leica lenses

The P9 was the first Huawei smartphone with a dual camera developed in cooperation with Leica a year ago. The first evolutionary step followed half a year later with the introduction of the Mate 9. In terms of camera hardware at least the P10 corresponds to the Mate 9, only with the P10 Plus there is a somewhat better equipment.

In detail, Huawei relies on two sensors delivered by Sony, which are installed next to each other. Outside, the color sensor sits with 12 megapixels, to the right a monochrome sensor without a Bayer matrix with 20 megapixels. The color sensor is equipped with an optical image stabilizer, while the monochrome sensor is not.

As Huawei explains, the 20 megapixel sensor is responsible for a high level of sharpening of the photos. Without a Bayer Matrix, a higher degree of sharpness can be depicted. With the information from the color sensor, both images are combined into one shot. The color sensor does not need the monochromatic sensor but not necessarily for photos, because shots can still shoot even with covered twelensor. The smartphone is aware of this and then warns against it.

The P10 Plus has new Summilux lenses

The lenses are the primary distinguishing feature between P10 and the larger and more expensive P10 Plus. The Summarit lenses of the P10 with 27 mm focal length and f / 2.2 aperture are already known from the Mate 9. For the P10 Plus Huawei has switched to better Summilux lenses, which are further opened with f / 1.8 aperture. This allows lower ISO values ​​and shorter exposure times under the same conditions, which potentially leads to less noise and more sharpness.

Great pictures in nice weather

For the recordings, an iPhone 7 Plus was used as a comparison device. The comparison shows very well that Apple itself with the clearly upgraded camera of the iPhone 7 Plus is no longer the benchmark of the industry. Except for a few shots, the pictures of the P10 always appear a clearer and finer resolution, at Apple more often the impression of a graffiti over the picture. Basically, the pictures of the P10 leave a cooler impression, which is partially sterile and takes some pictures of the atmosphere. The sharpening level is very high throughout the subject, unless the digital zoom is used.

P10 at a disadvantage in night shots

After sunset, the P10 also goes under, because for shooting in low light the camera is not particularly well suited. The f / 2.2 aperture is clearly here at a disadvantage compared to the f / 1.8 aperture of the iPhone. Too bad that Huawei only the P10 plus the better optics. At night, many details are lost and the noise increases. If the light is dim, it is advisable to switch to the black / white mode of the 20 megapixel sensor without a Bayer matrix. To some or other less good picture can be so a bit of mood. In general, black-and-white mode makes normal recordings a special style with artistic accents – perfect for the Instagram generation.


Portrait mode with more settings

New is the portrait mode of the P10, which is activated via a button on the first level of the camera app. It is possible to determine how intensively the artificial bokeh should fail and whether an “artistic effect” should be placed over the picture. Depending on the selected stage, the bokeh is not very strong (test recording). The iPhone 7 Plus changes to portrait mode on the telephoto lens and shows the user in the viewfinder when he hits the right distance to the person and the depth effect has activated. Both modes tend to be blurred in the margins to the background, especially in the case of hair, there are often minor problems. The iPhone provides the more natural images, while the P10 offers more options for the user to influence the appearance of the final shot.

Huawei P10
Huawei P10

Apple iPhone 7 Plus
Apple iPhone 7 Plus

For the photo gallery of the P10, a feature for automatically created short video clips has been developed together with GoPro, which combine photos and videos shot at a location or within a certain period of time to short stories.

HiSilicon Kirin 960 and EMUI 5.1

The P10 is in terms of performance a Mate 9 in the smaller case. It uses the same new 16-nm SoC Kirin 960 from TSMC production, which comes from the Huawei subsidiary HiSilicon. The chip provides a total of eight CPU cores, four of which are fast Cortex-A73s from ARM, the other four are the Cortex-A53s, which have been used for many years in many SoCs. HiSilicon clocks the Cortex-A73 with up to 2.4 GHz in the peak comparatively high, but not quite as high as the up to 2.5 GHz fast Cortex-A72 from the Kirin 955, which is for example in the Huawei P9.

The Kirin 960 is mainly due to GPU performance

With the ARM Mali-G71 MP8 the P10 makes a great performance jump in the GPU measurements. The Kirin 960 is the first SoC from Huawei, which also offers fast hardware in the graphics unit. Up to the Kirin 955 Huawei could score with a high to very high CPU speed, but in the GPU area, however, rather weak ARM models with only four shader clusters were installed. With the now installed MP8 version, Huawei moves clearly in the direction of Qualcomm and Apple.

Android 7.0 with optional app drawer

On the Huawei P10 runs Android 7.0 (test) with the security patch level of February this year. So the P10 lags the current level of Google a month behind. Via the Android user interface, Huawei sets up its EMUI 5.1, which, apart from the enhancement of the gallery explained in the camera section and the new portrait modes, matches the operating system of the Mate 9. These new features are responsible for the version jump from 5.0 to 5.1, otherwise there are no differences.

Android 7.0 mit EMUI 5.1 auf dem Huawei P10
Android 7.0 with EMUI 5.1 on the Huawei P10

With EMUI 5.x Huawei reveals primarily the constantly growing design differences of previous versions. The entire operating system is much more tidy and more complete, as symbols, colors and menus now have a uniform style across all levels. Huawei-Typically, no app drawer is shown at the factory, so that all installed apps are spread over the homescreens. In the settings, the classic app menu can be reactivated, if necessary.

Long running times and fast loading

The housing has become smaller, the battery against the P9 but nevertheless from 3,000 to 3,200 mAh in the P10 grown. In combination with the 0.1 inch smaller display, this provides for better running times. In the PCMark, which simulates genuine everyday applications via standard APIs of Android, the P10 achieves 9-hour runtime. This is 20 percent more than the P9 and 5 percent more than the Mate 9.

When playing a YouTube video in slow motion, the P10 works much more efficiently than the P9. The new SoC is likely to have the largest share of the improvement: over 90 percent is the lead. With just over 11 hours of running time, the P10 scrapes at the top field. As with the PCMark, the Lenovo Moto Z Play (test) and LG X Power (test) are the top riders thanks to larger batteries and lower resolution.


Fast WLAN at short distance

The WLAN of the Huawei P10 is fast, very fast even, but only with measurements at short distance to the WLAN router. In conjunction with an Asus RT-AC68 in the same room, the smartphone reaches more than 35 MB / s to 5 GHz when transferring a 1 GB file. In the 2.4 GHz network the speed is reduced to still fast 10.45 MB / s. The situation is different when the ASRock AC2600 is repeated several times. With just 4 MB / s (5 GHz) and just 2 MB / s (2.4 GHz), the Huawei P10 transmits significantly slower data than devices in the test of smartphones up to 200 euros.

More connectivity for the P10 Plus

LTE supports the P10 with up to 600 Mbps in the downstream. Vodafone would be the most likely to excite this capability with a maximum of 375 Mbit / s in Germany. The LTE antenna layout of the P10 allows 2 × 2 MIMO, the larger P10 Plus 4 × 4 MIMO.

The small P10 also lacks the infrared transmitter at the top of the smartphone. Apart from this, the further connectivity of both smartphones with Bluetooth 4.2, NFC as well as A-GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou and Galileo is identical.


The Huawei P10 is a piekfein processed smartphone with many good features. Huawei is one of only a very few manufacturers to launch its flagship in the 5-inch format, which also appeals to customer groups that do not want bigger and bigger smartphones. The equipment is, however, not saved: display, processor, camera and battery move at a high level and convince in many everyday situations.

The smartphone has a handful of minor weaknesses, such as the slow WLAN over longer distances or the lack of Adoptable Storage for Android. The most noticeable and annoying weakness in everyday life affects the otherwise great camera: At night, the P10 cuts only mediocre.

Das Huawei P10 ist in Summe ein sehr gutes Kompakt-Smartphone
The Huawei P10 is in sum a very good compact smartphone
In sum, the Huawei P10 is nevertheless a very good smartphone, which is especially worth a purchase when flagging hardware in the compact format is desired. The suggested retail price of 599 euros is fair.

Huawei P10 (64GB)
Productgroup Smartphones, 03.04.2017
display +
Performance Produktiv ++
Performance Entertainment ++
Duration +
processing ++
Very high quality housing
Tadellose processing
Good ergonomics
Very fast Kirin 960
Great camera in good light
Extremely fast fingerprint sensor
Consistently good running times
Memory expandable
Very fast WLAN at short distance
Practical USB Type C
Camera at night with disadvantages
No Adoptable Storage
WLAN at long distance very slow
From 527, – € in the price comparison
599 € MSRP
Product Website



Always on the move... Love to blog, write about smartphones, technology and telecoms. I also like to snowboard, when I have the time :p I'll be around for a while so, be prepared.

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