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Honor 20 Pro and Honor 20 Launch in London

Two new Honor phones have arrived.

Coincidence or clever timing, Honor today unveiled their new flagships on the same day as the new OnePlus 7 Pro went on sale, giving us customers even more choice than ever before in the world of ‘flagship’ Android smartphones. At an event in London, UK, Honor showed off the latest additions to their mid-range hero devices. We say mid-range, but the Pro version includes some really impressive features that allow for comparisons in some areas with the Samsung S10+ and even the iPhone XS Max.

Despite the recent Google / Huawei ongoing discussions, Honor pressed ahead with the launch, confirming that both devices have already been certified by Google which means they should have access to the Google Play Store and Google’s other services, although future Android updates are less certain for now.

Honor 20 series UK launch event

The Honor 20 (not to be confused with the excellent Honor View 20 which launched earlier this year) and the Honor 20 Pro are at the top end of the Chinese manufacturer’s range. They include the Kirin 980 processor (the same one found in the P30 Pro), plus side-mounted fingerprint scanners, a large 6.26″ display, quad-lens cameras and a punch-hole camera on the front.

The side-mounted fingerprint scanner is well positioned and whilst it’s personal preference, we prefer it to the screen-positioned scanner seen on other phones. Honor positions itself as a ‘youth-brand’, so they’ve continued their partnership with Fortnite and the game is pre-installed on the phone, as well as giving Honor users access to an exclusive skin for use in the game. On the subject of gaming, the performance on this phone is seriously impressive. The camera produces some great results, and unless you’re expecting absolute photographic perfection, will be more than enough for most users – we’ve had some fantastic results with the Honor 20 Pro’s camera.

Round the back you’ll find those four cameras. There’s a main 48-megapixel f/1.4 camera with optical image stabilisation, a 117-degree wide-angle 16-megapixel f/2.2 camera, and an 8-megapixel f/2.4 telephoto camera. It’s a similar setup to what you’ll find on the OnePlus 7 Pro or Samsung Galaxy S10. The standard Honor 20 has a slightly different setup, trading the telephoto camera for a 2-megapixel depth-sensing camera. It also doesn’t have any optical image stabilisation on its main camera. Both phones have a fourth 2-megapixel f/2.4 macro camera on their backs and a 32-megapixel f/2.0 selfie camera in the 4.5mm hole-punch built into their screens.

The rear cameras can produce some really impressive results in the right hands.  The live demo we saw had the Honor 20 Pro’s camera outperform the Samsung Galaxy S10+  and iPhone XS Max when it came to close-up detail in photos and when zooming from a distance. In the real world it’ll be a much closer result, but it goes to show that you don’t need the hefty price tag to provide people with premium camera features.

Honor 20 Pro

Internally, the Honor 20 Pro is as powerful as any of Huawei’s current flagships. It uses the same Kirin 980 processor as the Huawei P30 Pro, and includes 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage (the Honor 20 has 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage). This makes the Honor 20 Pro a fast phone to use, which you’ll notice when playing games and jumping between apps.  I played Fortnite on the phone using the highest ‘Epic’ setting and the game ran beautifully at 30 fps (frames per second). Honor have also confirmed that the phone will receive the same update as the Honor View 20 to allow the game to run at 60 fps.

The Pro model is powered by a 4,000mAh battery, while the standard Honor 20 has a 3,750mAh version. These should be more than enough to get you through the day unless your a heavy power-user.  Both the 20 and the 20 Pro support fast-charging via their USB-C ports of up to 22.5W, which Honor claims can restore 50 percent of the phone’s charge in 30 minutes. You’re not getting wireless charging on these phones but if you don’t benefit from that now on your current phone, you’re unlikely to miss that feature.  I have a wireless charger and wired version on my desk and 9 times out of 10 I just end up plugging it in to the wired version.

The Honor 20 Pro will be available in two colours, Phantom Black (which looks more like purple to me) and Phantom Blue (a kind of ocean blue / green colour).

The Honor 20 can be pre-ordered now for £399.99 at Mobile Phones Direct, Carphone Warehouse, O2, Three and Amazon with a free Honor Watch Magic (worth £179.99) and will launch on June 21. The Honor 20 Pro release date is still to be confirmed but we expect it to arrive in July in the UK.

Our hands-on review and first look at the Honor 20 Pro and Honor 20 is live now on our YouTube channel.

Let us know what you think in the Comments below or over on Twitter.

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