The Wrap – October 19, 2018

It’s a week of phones, as Huawei, Razer, Samsung, and Google offer a glimpse in what the year will end with in the smartphone world. Calling all phone lovers, this is The Wrap

Transcript

For the week ending the 19th of October, you’re listening to The Wrap, Australia’s fastest technology roundup, and if you’ve been paying attention to the week’s news, you may know there has been a lot of movement in the phone world. And if not, hold on, because we’re bringing it to you right now.

And that starts with a look at the smartphone world, because there is so much choice out there. We’re certainly not starved for it, and if you want a new phone, you don’t necessarily need choose either Apple or Samsung. This week, there are a few more, starting with Huawei.

Launched in London this week, which Huawei brought Pickr and The Wrap over for, there are new models in the Mate series, and while there are technically four phones, one is easily the one to look out for, with a truly intriguing device.

For the moment, Australia will be getting two of the Mate 20s, and both offer pretty big screens, arriving in the three camera Mate 20 and Mate 20 Pro, but it’s the last of these that grabs us, and it’s not just because it’s yet another big phone. It is one that packs in all the features, and then some.

Features like fast processing, great 4G speeds, and a big bright screen, as well as a few more unusual ones, like a fingerprint sensor built into the screen, a truly interesting idea that helps to make the Mate 20 Pro feel more like it’s out of the future. You merely need to touch the screen and Huawei’s Mate 20 Pro logs in, and there’s also a facial security system much like Apple’s on the iPhone, doubling up the security tech.

Huawei has also brought over wireless charging, but there’s also a cute little feature that will let your Mate 20 Pro charge other wireless devices with reverse wireless charging. If your friends ever complain about their iPhone 8 or Galaxy S9 not having enough charge, you can remedy that by pushing them together.

But the feature most likely to grab attention is the new camera, which evolves from what Huawei delivered in the P20 Pro earlier in the year. Like that phone, there are three cameras, but there’s a bit of a change, with the phone sporting ultra-wide, wide, and close, and a whole bunch of AI putting it all together.

Leica worked on it with Huawei, and after playing with it for a few days, we can say that it’s pretty impressive, and does things bigger cameras are often used for. We have test images at the Pickr.com.au website, and you can even get the AI to work its magic in video, too.

Now we need to stress, this isn’t a review, but initial testing with the Mate 20 Pro tells us the battery life is good, and the whole phone feels pretty solid. It won’t necessarily be cheap at $1599, but given how much phones cost this year, we bet you’re probably not surprised. You can check the site for more, but all in all it’s shaping up to be a pretty great phone.

And it may not be the only one, with Apple’s slightly more wallet friendly iPhone XR also on its way to stores in the next few days, as well as Google’s Pixel 3, which we’ve only spent a little bit of time with, but doesn’t feel like the grand slam Google needs it to be. You can expect a full review next week, and there are certainly things to like about the new Pixel, but with so many great phones, this one may slip off the radar of all but the dedicated Android fan-person.

There’s also a new phone from Razer on the way, made for mobile gaming first and foremost, not to mention Samsung’s mid-range phone, which gets four rear cameras and is made for the social crowd.

And the year’s not over yet, with the likelihood of LG’s V40 arriving locally, several new phones from Nokia to add to what is easily a growing pile, not to mention something new with a big full screen from Oppo very, very shortly.

Sufficed to say, if you want to buy a phone, your choices are very varied, and we’re going to be busy reviewers. All the phones in not a whole lot of time, which is what this episode is out of.

So you’ve been listening to The Wrap, Australia’s fastest technology roundup. The Wrap appears every Friday at Podcast One, Apple Podcasts, and Pickr.com.au, and it will be back next week for more tech in the space of five.

Until then, have a great week, and we’ll see you next time on The Wrap. Take care.

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