Huawei P20 Pro: Can it Thrive in the Premium Market?

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Whisper it quietly, but the smartphone market experienced a sudden and unexpected decline at the beginning of 2018. According to Strategy Analytics, the global market fell by 9% year-on-year last quarter, with the collapse of the feature phone market (particularly in China) at the heart of this phenomenon.

Even the premium smartphone market endured a challenging start to 2018, however, with Apple’s sales down by 1% and the iPhone X experiencing reduced demand. The biggest issue here is the increasing cost of premium handsets, which is encouraging users to hang onto their handsets for longer and avoid costly upgrades.

This is creating an opportunity for handsets at the lower end of the premium market, however, who can capitalise on this trend with competitively priced mobiles. Take the Huawei P20 Pro, for example, which is priced at around £799 and has the potential to claim an impressive share of the premium marketplace.

Can it really achieve this aim, however? Let’s take a look. 

The P20 Pro – What is its Key Selling Point?

In some respects, Huawei’s launch of the P20 Pro represents something of a strange decision, as it came on the heels of the flagship, Mate 10 Pro handset (released during the latter half of 2017).

Still, it’s part of a concerted drive by the brand to increase its share of the premium smartphone market, having become the third most dominant manufacturer with more than 10% of all sales last year.

The good news is that the P20 Pro is a superb handset, and one that continues a number of successful trends in the marketplace. Not only has the phone mirrored the sleek design of the iPhone X and Samsung’s Galaxy S9 (check out the stylish glass back), for example, but developers have also strived to create the type of unique selling point that affords high-end phones a distinct competitive edge.

In this instance, the most striking selling point is the inclusion of three powerful cameras. This is truly unique in the smartphone market, with a trio of Leica-branded, rear-facing cameras offering both functionality and novelty value alike. One of these cameras is a 40-megapixel RGB unit, while another captures 20-megapixel monochrome images.

The third of this triumvirate delivers 8-megapixel telephone shots, and this arrangement is superior to any other available in the current market.

This impressive feature certainly helps the handset to stand apart from its premium rivals, which in turn has afforded it an opportunity to prosper on the market.

What Else Does This Phone Offer?

While the triple camera arrangement may be the hook that captures the attention of consumers, it is not necessarily what encourages them to stay. After all, the P20 Pro boasts a superb specification that has diverse appeal in the market, while also providing genuine value for money for a premium handset.

This undoubtedly has the potential to create a perfect storm from Huawei, and one that enables the Chinese brand to make up further ground on Apple and Samsung (the only manufacturers with a larger market share).

There’s a superb battery unit, for example, which drives extended use for serial gamers, streamers and avid camera fans. This, when allied with impressive audio performance, a HiSilicon Kirin 970 chipset and up to 6GB of RAM, makes for a solid and functional spec that drives outstanding performance.

Then there’s the display, which is extremely impressive and at par with any other available on premium smartphones. At 6.1-inches it’s certainly one of the largest, while a 18.7:9 aspect ratio and an OLED panel also offers exceptional visuals and just the right level of brightness. The screen also boasts full HD+ capability and a resolution of 2240 x 1080, is something that should appeal to all users regardless of how they liked to use their handsets.

Where Does the P20 Pro Stand in the Marketplace?

The P20 Pro is typical of Huawei’s latest offerings, thanks to its combination of premium design, innovative features and relatively competitive pricing.

While this handset may be a little more expensive than the Mate 10 Pro alternative (which may deter some customers), Huawei can justify this by the integration of a genuinely unique camera and a high-end display that is also one of the very best on the market.

Not only this, but distributors such as the fonehouse are offering a host of extremely competitive, pay monthly deals on the P20 Pro to customers at present. This makes this reasonably priced, premium handset even more affordable, and this could prove decisive in an increasingly competitive and selective market.

Sure, there are potential issues with this handset, such as the lack of wireless charging and the absence of the 3.5mm headphone jack. These do not undermine the unique selling point and universal appeal of the P20 Pro, however, nor do they prevent the handset from taking pride of place in the real-time market.

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