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Maboneng and a Huawei Mate 8

The Mate8 is better:

I originally purchased my own Huawei Mate7 some time ago, and was happy with it’s video capability, which is why I wanted it. It finally felt like a decent camera that was better than most iPhones.

Technically it was, but I found that over time, it has less of a lasting effect on certain light conditions. It was awful in anything other than brightly lite spaces or areas and didn’t make for good video with anything other than bright conditions. It was a fine device, and has provided that Androids, specifically those made by Huawei were going to be a major player in the South Africa if not African smartphone market.

Then came the Huawei Mate8. I feel like those guys from the “Million Dollar Man”;”We can rebuild him, stronger, faster”. And it’s true, Huawei really did make a better Phablet, it’s superior to the Mate7 in every way, especially where it matters: Low light video and photography.

It’s also the same size at the Mate7, though, the design differs slightly. If you read my review on the Huawei p9, I noted it’s tendency to smash when bumped, because some dumb engineer decided you should have a screen on top of the strong case, rather than within it, the Mate8 screen is now plush with the rest of the casing and makes for a much better overall feel.

Similar to the Huawei P9 in looks, just bigger, it grips well, and doesn’t feel like it’d slip when being tugged out of your pocket.

Unlike it’s predecessor, the Mate8 doesn’t have duel SIM card/ SD card slot. Which, you know, is not the end of the world, I felt it was a bit gimmicky on the Mate7 anyway. Because of it’s large internal storage, it’s doubtful you’ll miss the SD card too much.

The device runs the Huawei Emotion UI 4.0, and the Android OS Marshmallow. It really is a smooth and easy to user interface, with very few efficiency problems for loading and rendering.

Huawei Mate8 Masoning Adventure:

I had the change to try out the Mate8 while running around Maboneng: the place of light, the inner city of Johannesburg. I admit, I was more interested in the video ability of the Mate8, but found it’s camera also really crisp and effective in all light or environmental conditions.

Though, I still would put my energy on the Huawei P9 for camera ability, the Mate8 is also a stunning example of a “camera first” device.

Here’s some highlight’s of my adventure thought Maboneng with the Huawei Mate8, most of which are linked to our several Instagram accounts:

Single Huawei Camera:

Now, on to the cool things like the camera:


    • 16 MP, f/2.0, 27mm, OIS, phase detection autofocus, dual-LED (dual tone) flash, check quality


    • 1/2.8″ sensor size, geo-tagging, touch focus, face/smile detection, panorama, HDR


    • 1080p@60fps, 1080p@30fps, 720p@120fps, check quality


    • 8 MP, f/2.4, 26mm, 1080p

Internal Settings:

Most of the initial or most used settings in the Huawei P9 are in the bottom tabs for ease of use. Everything else can be found in settings:

    • Panorama
    • HDR
    • Watermark
    • Slow-mo video
    • All Focus ( best for close up and maintaining focus on an object, I didn’t use it much)
    • Super Night (It’s essentially a good long exposure setting, which is new on a device with only on camera)
    • Professional (This option let’s you play photographer, offering you the ability to edit your iSO, shutter speed and so on. Again, like most Huawei devices now, the Camera is a massive asset and tool, something to spend time on)
    • You’ve also got the option to lay over filters. It’s not a massive deal, but it maybe nice for someone who’s a casual photographer, just looking for a nice phone.

What do you think?

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Written by Brett Magill


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