Mate 20 Pro - 5 Days In

JazzJPH

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Feb 3, 2019
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Hello all,

I know 5 days isn't long, but I wanted to get my initial thoughts and experience of this phone out there hopefully to help others and possibly get some pointers of those who've owned the phone a bit longer.

So I managed to get myself and my wife a Mate 20 Pro for £650 each by getting a John Lewis price match. Great deal and very happy. We both had a Samsung Galaxy S7 each before upgrading to this device.

Phone Clone:
Using Phone Clone was difficult at first, but we learned from a bit of searching on the internet that we had to put our SIM cards into the new phones for it to work. It wasn't mentioned on the app, so hopefully that little nugget of info should help others.
It was mostly successful, all the apps were brought over. Some apps had to be uninstalled and reinstalled as they seemed to have their settings to suit the Galaxy S7. I think if I was to do it again I wouldn't bother with Phone Clone. I would just take my time and install apps as and when I need them over time. It also brought across all the Samsung bloatware we had. In summary I'd say it's just as much work to use Phone Clone then delete or reinstall as appropriate, than it is to just manually install your apps.

Initial Normal Use:
The Mate 20 Pro is much bigger than the S7 and has a much bigger (and better) screen-to-phone ratio (does that make sense?). Walking about with it in my pocket was strange. Whenever I pulled it out of a pocket I was extra careful, it just felt like this thing would smash into pieces if I dropped it. I found it strange considering it feels solid in my hand. We had the Huawei smart cases ordered before the phones arrived so when they came it was a bit of a relief - both myself and my wife feeling more at ease. This phone is beautiful and performs so well, with long battery life and high quality camera and screen resolutions.

Smart Case
As mentioned above, the case made us feel more at ease. It is a smart case, but doesn't require any installation or setting up. Just fit the phone in, close the case and the screen will adapt to the window in the case. It's pretty cool. The case only arrived last night so I intend to return and update with my experience of the case after a few weeks/months.
An Issue I noticed is that my 3rd party alarm app (installed for the homescreen widget) didn't go off this morning, despite two alarms being set. I think the smart case stops the phone coming alive from 3rd party apps. The app has been working since day one so I can only conclude it's the case. I will see if I can learn a bit more about this - hopefully without missing my alarm and being late...

User Interface / OS:
After some terrible Samsung customer service, my wife and I decided to stay away from them in our next purchase - hence the Mate 20 Pro. It is hard to deny that the Samsung UI and most stock apps are much better than the Mate 20 Pro UI. I know each device and UI needs time for the user to get used to and enjoy, but I know that this won't get much better unless Huawei release some major update. My personal preference summary is below:
UI Pros:
- Notch can be hidden
- Gestures or 3 buttons at bottom (I'm still undecided)
- App tray can be toggled on or off
- Knuckle gestures are good
- Easy to get used to
- Unlocking with fingerprint / face recognition is SO FAST!!!
- Face recognition is great. Even when I have my glasses on, a hat and scarf - it's brilliant.

UI Cons (some vs Galaxy S7):
- Galaxy has much more home screen widgets (stock alarm clock widget was great)
- App tray is just one big list - Galaxy had screens to swipe through so you see a set amount at any one time rather than a scrolling/moving list
- Homescreen widget resolution doesn't go small enough (I have mentioned elsewhere)
- Android Auto doesn't yet work (Galaxy S7 worked for the last year in my car)
- Bose Connect app doesn't work properly (Galaxy S7 worked fine from day 1)
- The notch is so wide that you can't see some notifications if you have mobile data/WiFi and bluetooth on. Next to them is the "vibrate" symbol and then the Spotify symbol. I only know I have a WhatsApp message by dragging the bar down. It doesn't even come up on the smart case screen despite all the spare space.

The problems with Android Auto and Bose Connect feel, to me, like there are many more apps out there that work on other Android devices but not Huawei. This makes me think the Huawei EMUI is streets behind Google/Samsung/HTC etc. Although as time goes on and I get more used to this phone I may figure out how to sort such problems out. Even if there are work arounds - why should we have to work around something that should work straight away?

Problems:

I have already mentioned my issues with Android Auto and Bose Connect, but I'll add a bit more info so others searching the forums for the same (or similar) issues can maybe find some assistance.
Android Auto:
I installed Android Auto on the phone and plugged it into the car via the same USB port (different cable) that I used for the Galaxy S7. The car recognised it and tried to start the Android Auto configuration. I carried out my bit on the phone, allowing permissions etc.
Once it was set up, the car didn't have the option to enter Android Auto, but the phone was in Android Auto mode. I cleared data and the cache, still no joy. I read somewhere that another Mate 20 Pro owner had to plug the phone in before the engine was started. I tried that, still nothing. No acknowledgement from the car that the phone is plugged in. I have also tried using a different cable.

Bose Connect:
The Bose Connect app isn't great anyway, so I am not missing much. Still, I want every app to work without any issues. On the Galaxy S7 the Bose app would open and find my Soundsport Wireless earphones even if they weren't connected to it, just as long as they were on. On the Mate 20 Pro, it can't find the earphones even when I'm listening to Spotify through bluetooth on the same device. It's bizarre. The Bose app says to close any other apps on other devices so I uninstalled the app from the S7. I cleared data/cache on the Mate 20 Pro and tried again. No joy. Still I can listen to my music through bluetooth. Bizarre.

And finally:

My Desired Improvements:

In my opinion, Huawei could make their Mate 20 Pro much better by ensuring all android apps work as they should on their EMUI, considering this is an android device. Problems such as above with Android Auto and Bose Connect shouldn't be happening. They have some big changes to make before I'm convinced they're as good as Samsung, HTC etc.
I mention HTC because I had the One M8 a few years back and even that was better then than the Mate 20 Pro is now - from a UI point of view (again, in my opinion).

Also, I'd suggest Huawei:
- Give an option to tweak home screen widget resolution
- Make a system alarm clock home screen widget
- Make the app tray more controlled, lock in screens so you see chunks of apps at a time
- Make the photo gallery more user friendly (although I'll happily take this line down if I find that it's my phone clone issue with this one)
- Fix buggy apps that work on other android devices (I've had some apps refuse to open so I have to uninstall and reinstall)
- Make the recent apps navigation screen tiled or something better than the near-full screen left-to-right scrolling
- Allow users to make SwiftKey a visible app. It has been my default app for years now and I want to access it easily to tweak settings

I tried to structure it but I think I may have lost a bit of that as I rambled. That's all I can think of off the top of my head but I'll return. Again, the aim is just to get this information on the forums so others can search if they have the same or similar issues.
 

JazzJPH

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Feb 3, 2019
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Alarm theory update: either the phone case stops 3rd party apps waking the phone and using sound OR the app I was using is useless.
I have uninstalled the app, will try something else.
Stock alarm clock works fine and can actually be switched off from the smart case with a slider(left/right)
 
Last edited:

JZ VR

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Sep 28, 2016
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Tap on the clock widget to go into the stock alarm app there's no need for a widget and some of the issues may be Android 9 issues or the fact you used phone clone. I find some apps won't work properly if they're cloned from the old phone cause sometimes the phone will try to clone the old settings too.
 

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