The second round begins. After the spectacular presentation in Barcelona of the new flagship of Samsung and HTC (Galaxy S6 and One M9), were to mention some of the leading manufacturers of mobile phones in the world. And it has been the Chinese firm Huawei, with its new P8, the first to show its commitment to the high end of this year.
Unlike what usually happens most of the time, little is yet known of the characteristics of the new ultra thin Huawei smartphone. The rumors had limited this time to its external appearance, metal and glass, very popular in high-end, and the extraordinary thinness of the new terminal. But little or nothing was known in advance about its performance, processor, camera or performance.
London was the venue chosen for the coming-out of the P8. There, in the Old Billings Gate, an old market on the banks of the Thames hundred journalists from around the world have come to see the new terminal of one of the companies that has grown in recent years.
Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei’s consumer business director, has come up on stage to refer to the success of the P series, which began in 2012 with P1 in Las Vegas and, from 2013, with the P6 and P7 a year later, became the most glamorous “smartphones” of the company. Now, the new P8 takes over and will be responsible for maintaining and expanding the success of the firm in Europe.
Elegance and design
The four pillars on which the new device is based are four: design, camera, connectivity and usability. Joonsuh Kim, design director of Huawei, explained how its came to imagine one of the most elegant “smartphones”.
Kim has been compared to an iceberg the design concept. We see only a small part and the rest, but its there, is hidden from view. Constructed in metal and glass, it is a solid device, completely flat, with silver edges and slightly rounded corners. “Lines and curves reach a perfect balance”, stressed Kim. One idea could already be seen in the previous P7 and has now been carried to the extreme. The thickness of P8 is only 6.4 millimeters, thinner, for example, the iPhone 6, having 6.9 mm. The metal texture is specially treated to reflect light in a special way.
The screen is 5.2 inch and covers a spectacular 78.3 percent of the entire front, a much higher ratio than any other terminal (including the new Samsuung Galaxy S6 is lower, at 77 percent), which allows the “smartphone” not increase their size and can still be used comfortably with one hand. Come in the color champagne, grey, black and gold.
The camera has undergone a major evolution with respect to previous models. And, beyond the megapixel, which is 13, it is designed to capture details that escape most. The macro, for example, can focus only 4 cm the object that we are photographing.
The new P8 has a next-generation image stabilizer, with an ‘anti-sway’ of 1.2 degree. The zoom has also been improved and the sensor is capable of displaying colors up 32 percent brighter and 78 percent less noise, especially in low light. The face recognition system is virtually instantaneous, making it possible to capture subjects with greater clarity and distant scenes with the right focus.
Unlike its competitors, Huawei has ensured that camera does not protrude from the back of the terminal, as for example both the iPhone 6 as with the Galaxy S6. Nothing was said during the presentation on the screen resolution, which is apparently Full Hd.
The software that comes with the camera is able to get spectacular effects such as display lights in motion (e.g., surrounding a subject), which allows to obtain impossible photography, as a person surrounded by a ring of light. On the video, the “manager mode” allow you to display the same video from four different angles, interconnecting three other “smartphones” to which the action is directed. One possibility that has been exploited by Sony in its Xperia Z3 and allows show the same scene from different points of view and a unique video.
The connectivity, one of the specialties of Huawei, has been improved to the point that the terminal reduces by 50 percent the number of calls that are interrupted and increases by 20 percent the connection to the first call we perform.
New technology “Knuckle sense”
The Wifi+ system also automatically connects the terminal to the network as quickly as possible, so that, in a transparent way for the user, can always navigate at maximum speed. The Roaming+ system, meanwhile, can connect to any telephone network, when we travel abroad, up to three times faster than with any other terminal.
The new P8 also supports two 4G SIM cards (nanosim) that can be configured in seconds. Huawei also introduced into this terminal a new technology, “Knuckle sense” that allows perform many tasks (crop a photo, select a text, enlarge an image) with only a light touch to knuckle on the screen.
The processor is self-made. It is an octa-core Kirin 930/935 and whose performance is up to 80 percent higher than the previous versions. The 2600 mAh battery allows a day and a half standard and a full day with heavy use of the terminal.
A curious detail is its “smart label”. It allows making calls from abroad without entering the country code. Very convenient for those who travel a lot and need to go to edit phonebook entries if you want to call from outside.
The microphones, meanwhile, are able to reduce up to 90 percent background noise, if we are even using helmets. And let hear clearly a subject to more than two meters away, for example, if we put the headset in a conference room. Although the person involved in the conversation is at the other end, the caller on the other end of the line will hear clearly.
Another very original function is to “wake up” the phone by voice, which is useful on those occasions where you do not know where we left mobile. Instead of looking, we can call simply saying “Where are you?”. The phone responds “I’m here” and begin playing to locate it immediately.
A price content
Among the available accessories, it highlights a digital ink case, which shows all the data of the “smartphone” in a 4.3-inch electronic ink and very low consumption, such as e-books. The new P8 has 3 GB of RAM and costs 499 euro in its standard version with 16 GB. The price of the premium version with 64 GB up to 599 euro.
But there’s more. The new P8 has, like the iPhone, an older sibling with the same versions: The P8 Max, with a 6.8 inch screen and a battery life of more than two days in a row. In this model, there is only the Dual SIM version, both 16 GB as of 64 GB. The price of the Max will be 549 and 649 euro.