RAM Incident: What you need to know about Huawei P10
The recent incident has drawn some attention to Huawei. We all know that Huawei is no stranger to making great phones (take the fan favorite Nexus 6P, for example). Even at the low end of the price spectrum, the hardware is laudable. The P-series kicked off on a new foot last year with the P9 and P9 Plus, which brought great hardware and the impressive Leica cameras to the high-end smartphone business.
For 2017, we have the P10 and P10 Plus that bring sleek hardware, even better cameras, and a nicer software experience. Huawei has delivered something that provides almost anything you could ask for in a phone: good battery life, great camera, nice screen, and even an improved software experience. Right now Huawei is experiencing an incident regarding RAM performance, and hopefully everything will play out.
For the purposes of disclosure, I only received the smaller P10. It shares almost everything specs-wise with its larger brother except for a few things.
With the same SoC and RAM amount as the Mate 9, I figured that the P10 would perform similarly — I was not wrong. With the Kirin 960, you can expect buttery smooth animations and almost zero lag. The 4GB of RAM is just right, I think, with the Ultra Memory and all.
The P10 is very fast. It doesn't bog down and Ultra Memory does a decent job at not killing apps off too quickly. Gaming performance was also at an acceptable level. EMUI does feel slightly slower on the uptake than "stock" Android, but it's barely noticeable. Since I've been using the P10 about two weeks, I obviously can't say how well this phone will hold up long-term, but its performance out of the gate is quite good.
I am sure that many of you are left asking the question of whether the P10 is worth it at a starting price of €649. To be frank, the lack of an oleo phobic coating makes me want to say no. I understand that this seems like a ridiculous reason until you remember that this phone is supposed to be a premium device. A potential customer should not have to choose between a pre-installed screen protector, a third-party solution, or a naked screen that gets filthy right out of the box. I am not entirely sure what Huawei was thinking here.
Regardless, €649 is a lower price than a Pixel or iPhone for near equal power, camera performance, and such. What I deem as a showstopper may be simply an inconvenience to someone else who's more interested in the price-to-performance (and features) ratio.
The best way to determine whether or not you're interested in a P10 is to look at its competition and what those devices offer. You obviously have the smaller Pixel, Galaxy S7, and iPhone 7 that come to mind right off the bat. All have similarly-sized screens/bodies, great cameras, and varying levels of good performance. Software is a major consideration for a lot of us, so do you think the lower starting cost of the P10-series is worth having to use EMUI (versus stock, TouchWiz, or iOS)?
And with the LG G6 and Galaxy S8 announced and available for pre-orders, I have to ask if the P10 is a bit diminished in light of those two devices. Like most of these questions and ponderings, you have to answer them for yourself. At least we've seen what the major phone manufacturers are doing with the first part of 2017, so a decision is slightly easier to make.
Here we are, at the end of all things. Tolkien fandom aside, Huawei did a fantastic job with the P10. The phone sports mostly great hardware, a superb camera, and even a better software experience. Sure, I'd love to see EMUI lighten off of the "skinned" bits in the future, but it's actually usable now.
As we close the book on the P10, I am left asking what the phone could do to improve. There's the obvious inclusion of an oleophobic coating that I've beaten to death by this point and I would have liked to see the display get brighter, especially outdoors. Software is the sticking point for Huawei, despite the improvements made over the last couple of versions. This is not me saying that the company should just slap "stock" Android on its phones with some enhancements (like Motorola or OnePlus), but there is definitely room for growth. In a similar vein, the camera UI needs to be cleaned up. The main viewfinder should have a few basic options, while I think that more advanced features would be better suited to some place out of the way where the user can access them if he or she so desires. Despite all of this, the foundations for a great phone are here.
For my fellow U.S. residents, you will not be able to get this phone through any easy outlet. Though, it is compatible with some U.S. LTE bands so you could choose to import it. However, at the base MSRP plus the fees, I don't think it's worth it. Stick with the Note 7 (lol) I keep hearing so much about it.
There seems to be a commitment to improving the software experience over those from years past, but what concerns me is Huawei's track record (read: abysmal) with Android updates. Not even all of the variants of the P10's predecessor, the P9, have received Nougat yet. Although, my unit received a security patch right out of the box, but it is still on Android 7.0.
In addition, the recent RAM issue may leave some customers wondering if Huawei can continue its legacy of providing great phones. But hey, compared to Samsung, they don’t explode.
Thanks to Android Police for the information.