Huawei unveils the P40, P40 Pro, and P40 Pro+ with major camera improvements

Today at an event held virtually due to the COVID-19 coronavirus (it was originally going to be in Paris), Huawei introduced its new P40 series. The P-series has a long history of smartphone camera innovation, packing a 40-megapixel sensor into the P20 Pro, innovative RYYB sensors in the P30 series for incredible low-light performance, and now the P40 series takes it to the next level.

There are three models this year: the P40, P40 Pro, and the new P40 Pro+. And since the camera is the focus, let's talk about some big camera improvements. The resolution on the main sensor has been increased to 50 megapixels, and as you'd expect, it's still RYYB. But the sensor size is increased as well to 1/1.28 inches, which means you get more light intake and less noise.

Probably the bigger change is the zoom lenses. On the P40, you'll still get an eight-megapixel 3x zoom lens. On the Pro, it's still 5x, but this time, the telephoto lens is RYYB, which means that you should get much better low-light performance when you use it. It's a higher resolution as well at 12 megapixels.

And then there's the P40 Pro+. This device actually has two telephoto lenses, one at 3x and one at a whopping 10x. Both are eight megapixels, and should make for some impressive hybrid zoom. To be clear though, only the main sensor on the P40 Pro+ is RYYB.

All three devices have an ultra-wide sensor. It's 16 megapixels on the P40, but 40 megapixels on the Pro and Pro+.

And then there are video recording improvements. The P-series is finally getting 4K 60fps video capture, which is unlocked by the Kirin 990 chipset. It's also great in low-light with 51,000 ISO sensitivity, and it supports 4K time-lapse capture. There are three stereo microphones for an audio zoom feature, which is meant to detect audio from the subject that you're zooming in on.

As it turns out, the P40 series of smartphones isn't all camera. The screen has almost no visible bezel, and Huawei says its inspiration is the surface tension of water, on a glass that's filled to the top. The edges on the Pro and Pro+ are curved just like the top of the water would be. There's a 6.58-inch screen on the Pro and Pro+, while the regular P40 is still flat, and comes in at 6.1 inches.

The company also went with a hole-punch display for the front-facing camera, the first time it's done so in a flagship. The screen has a 90Hz refresh rate, so it should make for a smooth experience, similar to other high refresh rate devices that we've seen.

Under the hood, there's a Kirin 990 chipset, and a 4,200mAh battery, with the regular P40 getting a 3,800mAh battery. The Pro and Pro+ get the same 40W wired charging as last year, but they also get 40W wireless charging now too. The P40 still gets 22.5W wired charging.

The P40 and P40 Pro are made of glass, and they come in Ice White, Black, DeepSea Blue, Silver Frost, and Blush Gold. The P40 Pro+ actually has a ceramic back, and that comes in black and white colors.

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