Huawei P40 Pro vs Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra

We answer really vague questions



In the mainstream consciousness, Huawei and Samsung are easily two of the top Android smartphone makers today. Both came out with their first half of 2020 flagships so naturally we’re pitting them against each other. This is the Huawei P40 Pro vs Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra.

Both series actually came out with three phones each. However, the P40 Pro+ isn’t coming until June 2020. Since there’s no time like the present, we’ll be comparing two phones that are available right now.

It’s easy for these comparisons to get out of hand. So for this one, we’re just going to answer four really vague or simple questions about the two phones. Let’s get started.

Which one looks better?

As the old adage goes, “beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.” The same is true here and any other circumstance for that matter. However, we do feel like this is a two-part answer. After all, beauty should be inside and out.

In this case that’s the hardware and design on the outside and the UI on the inside. Let’s take a look at the hardware first.

A clear size difference 

On paper, it doesn’t look like the two are far apart. The Huawei P40 Pro has a 6.58-inch display while the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra comes in 6.9 inches. However, they feel monumentally different once you hold them.

The Galaxy S20 Ultra feels humongous. With or without a case, it just simply feels like one of the biggest phones today. Meanwhile, the P40 Pro feels like it hits the sweet spot in terms of size. It feels comfortable for one-hand use but not too small that you feel like you’re losing some screen real estate.

That feeling is most probably largely due to the unibody and curved overflow display found on the P40 Pro. It allows for the most display without extending the overall footprint of the device.

You can also get the P40 Pro in a variety of colors like the Deep Sea Blue that we have or the Blush Gold that’s also available. It’s a stark contrast to the too play-it-safe colors of the Galaxy S20 Ultra which are what some friends in the industry like to call “boring” black and just grey.

The camera modules at the back also look slightly different. The P40 Pro actually has more in common with the other phones in the S20 series. The Galaxy S20 Ultra has a module that feels as huge as the phone itself. We’ll go into more detail about the cameras later.

Deer Mountain Theme on EMUI

No notable difference in the UI

This one comes down entirely to preference. Both devices run on Android 10. The P40 Pro has the EMUI 10.1 on top while the Galaxy S20 Ultra has One UI 2.

Everything you expect to find on Android 10 is present here. They also behave pretty similarly in terms of the notification shade, settings, and whatnot. Just minor, negligible differences here or there. If you’re not a fan of the default themes, it can easily be changed. Each phone has a themes store with a variety of wallpaper options and icon packs.

Which phone is faster?

There are plenty of things to consider when we’re talking about speed. But we’re just going to go right ahead and assume you mean overall performance.

The P40 Pro is powered by Huawei’s latest and greatest chip to date — the Kirin 990 5G. Meanwhile, in the Philippines at least, the Galaxy S20 Ultra is powered by Samsung’s own Exynos 990.

Samsung’s gotten plenty of flak over the performance of the Exynos 990. Some websites have pointed out how it trails in benchmarking tests. In terms of speed, this isn’t readily noticeable. However, when it comes to overheating, the Galaxy S20 Ultra tends to heat up faster when screen recording or watching a livestream.

There’s also a little wrinkle about the S20 Ultra that’s unique to the Philippines. While both the Galaxy S20 Ultra and the P40 Pro are 5G-capable, Samsung opted to “disable the feature for the time being” owing to the lack of infrastructure to truly experience it.

Huawei put no such limiter on their device. When you get a 5G SIM and happen to find yourself in an area with 5G, you will get to enjoy the feature.

Which one takes better photos?

This is always one of the primary questions when it comes to comparing phones. Before we dive in, here are the specs for both flagships.

Huawei P40 Pro Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra
  • 50M f/1.9 RYYB OIS (Main)
  • 12M f/3.4 RYYB OIS (50x tele)
  • 40M f/1.8 (Ultra-wide)
  • TOF 3D


  • 12MP, F2.2 Ultra Wide
  • 108MP, F1.8 Wide-Angle
  • 48MP, F3.5 Telephoto
  • Depth Vision
Video up to 4K 60fps Video up to 8K 30fps, 4K 60fps
32MP f/2.0 AF + IR selfie cam 40MP, F2.2 selfie cam

We’ll drop some samples here with a few comments but watch out for a more comprehensive look at photo samples coming shortly. As with our usual smartphone camera comparisons, these were shot in auto mode and the only edits applied were resizing, combining into a collage, and adding text so you can load the images faster and compare them better.

Rear Cameras

The Huawei P40 Pro noticeably lets in more light. The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra looks sharper here but it’s heavily processed. The P40 Pro’s photo is also a more faithful color reproduction of this scene.

One look and you would think the Galaxy S20 Ultra nailed this shot. After all, it captured the blue sky and the colors are deeper. However, it isn’t color accurate. The sky wasn’t blue at all when we took this shot. In this particular set, the P40 Pro captured the more color accurate scene.

For anyone who likes to post-process their photos, that’s a fine quality for a smartphone camera to have.


Our managing editor isn’t much to look out so kindly focus on the other details. Clearly, the two phones’ selfie cameras have vastly different focal lengths. In this case, the P40 Pro’s ability to capture more of the scene is quite a boon compare to the Galaxy S20 Ultra. That’s especially true for the person above whose face tends to occupy a lot of the shot.

The S20 Ultra also tends to apply more “beautification” even if that feature is turned off. For people who like to go all natural, that’s another win for the P40 Pro. However, if that’s not your cup of tea, the P40 Pro’s beautification is one of the best in any smartphone today.

One huge edge that the P40 Pro has are the AI features. The ones were very fond off are the AI Remove Reflection and AI Passersby. What this essentially does is take multiple frames before, during, and after you press the shutter button. It then analyzes the scene to give you the option to take out any traces of reflection if you shot through a glass window or take out people or objects that may affect the composition of your shot.


Which phone lasts longer? 

Given our current self-isolation situation, battery life can be hard to gauge since we’re not out and about to truly put it through the paces. Before we jump straight to our actual experience, here are some battery-related numbers.

Huawei P40 Pro Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra
4200mAh 5000mAh
40W Fast charging 45W Fast charging
27W Fast wireless charging USB Power Delivery 3.0
Fast reverse wireless charging 27W Fast Qi/PMA wireless charging 15W
Power bank/Reverse wireless charging 9W

There seems to be a fair bit of a difference here but so many other factors come into play here. The Galaxy S20 Ultra’s 5000mAh is a necessity because of the sheer size of the display. That display also has a 120Hz screen refresh rate which consumes a bit more battery.

On the Huawei P40 Pro, the 4200mAh supports similar features. However, it has a smaller display that supports a 90Hz refresh rate which mildly consumes less power.

In the weeks we’ve spent with each phone so far, battery performance has been beastly for both. Even wired fast charging shows no considerable difference. However, the P40 Pro truly edges out the S20 Ultra in wireless charging. It just fills up faster.

Other things of note

Google Play on the Galaxy S20 Ultra will give you access to your usual social media apps, those that help you manage your finances (BDO, PayMaya, GCash), your favorite games (Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, PUBG, Asphalt 9), and many more. Guess what? Those are also available on the Huawei P40 Pro either via the AppGallery or a third party app.

P40 series users will also enjoy the new video calling app/feature called MeeTime. It promises 1080p video calls between P40 users along with a clear and uninterrupted experience.

That’s not all. MEEtime also lets you share your screen. It’s perfect if you have to show someone how to do something on the P40 Pro. No more scratching your head trying find the best words to describe each instruction. Show, don’t tell! It’s the best.

Which one should you get?

Head-to-head, the Huawei P40 Pro and Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra are pretty evenly matched. Perhaps the primary factors for consideration will be the phone size, camera performance, and pricing.

Phone size, design, as well as camera performance really come down to your preference. Pricing differs considerably. Both phones are now available in the Philippines but the base variants offered vary.

The Samsung Galaxy S20 ultra with 128GB storage and 12GB RAM retails for PhP 69,990. Meanwhile, for a comparable performance and a 256GB storage with 8GB of RAM, the Huawei P40 Pro retails for only PhP 50,990.

That’s a huge price difference. Additionally, buying the P40 Pro now until May 31, 2020 will also net you the Huawei Band 4, Free 50GB of Huawei Cloud storage for 12 months, along with Huawei’s VIP service.

This feature is a collaboration between GadgetMatch and Huawei Philippines

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