Published in Mobiles

Hands on with Huawei's Mate 8 and Nexus 6P at CES 2016

by on15 January 2016

During CES 2016, Chinese multinational smartphone giant Huawei unveiled its 6-inch Mate 8 flagship smartphone to succeed the 6-inch Mate 7 released in October 2014. While both devices have beautiful 1080p, 368ppi IPS-NEO panels that take up roughly 78 percent of the device’s screen-to-body ratio, the Mate 8 is Huawei’s first device running its own silicon with the Kirin 950 16nm octa-core FinFET processor as we wrote about back in November.

The Huawei Mate 8 runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow and as we mentioned previously, the Kirin 950 SoC utilizes ARM’s big.LITTLE dynamic process execution method, meaning either the four fast A72-based cores or the four slow A53-based cores will be running depending on application load. On top of Android Marshmallow is the new Emotion UI (EMUI) 4.0, an upgrade from the Mate 7’s current EMUI 3.1.

The device keeps the same 1920x1080p 368ppi IPS-NEO display as its predecessor. This is a negative crystal display that allows for an ultra-high contrast ratio and 15 percent lower power consumption. The Mate 8 also upgrades from Corning Gorilla Glass 3 (Mate 7) to Gorilla Glass 4.



Full hardware specifications on the Huawei Mate 8 include the Kirin 950 16nm FinFET SoC (quad-core Cortex A72 2.30GHz and quad-core Cortex A53 1.80GHz), Adreno 430 graphics, 3GB of RAM on the 32GB model and 4GB of RAM on the 64GB model. The camera upgrades from 13-megapixels with autofocus and single-LED flash to 16-megapixels with optical image stabilization (OIS), phase detection autofocus and dual-LED flash. Video is now able to be recorded in 1920x1080p at 60fps rather than 30fps. The front-facing camera has also been upgraded from 5-megapixel 720p to 8-mexapixel 1080p and features Huawei’s intuitive yet slightly creepy “perfect selfie” mode, which enables skin beautification that uses FotoNation’s algorithms to select the perfect lighting and interpret scene-influencing factors when shooting still images and videos.


Physical dimensions of the Huawei Mate 8 are 157.1mm tall by 80.6mm wide by 7.9mm thin (6.19 x 3.17 x 0.31 inches) and a weight of 185 grams (0.41 pounds), roughly 0.2 pounds lighter than the iPhone 6S Plus and the same weight as the Mate 7.




The battery on the Mate 8 has been slightly downgraded from the Mate 7’s Lithium-Polymer 4,100mAh to a still respectable Lithium-Polymer 4,000mAh unit. The device is offered with internal storage capacities of 32GB and 64GB and expandable microSD storage up to 128GB.


Huawei Nexus 6P Matte Gold Edition


Fifteen feet away at the other table, we were able to get some hands-on time with Huawei's special edition Gold Matte Google Nexus 6P flagship 5.7-inch device. This smartphone was already launched back in Fall but the new “Gold Matte” option now makes the device look more distinctly comparable to Apple’s iPhone 6/6S and 6/6S Plus “Rose Gold” color option. The Huawei Nexus 6P sports a 1440p AMOLED display at 518 pixels per inch. Interestingly, however, the device still feels slightly smaller than the 5.96-inch Nexus 6 it is replacing.


Full hardware specifications on the Huawei Nexus 6P (Matte Gold) include a 1.90GHz Snapdragon 810 octa-core SoC (four Cortex A53 cores at 1.56GHz, four Cortex A57 cores at 1.95GHz), Adreno 430 graphics and 3GB of RAM. It includes a 12.2-megapixel Sony rear camera with autofocus, 3840x2160p 4K Ultra HD video capture at 30fps (including slow motion) and an 8-megapixel front-facing camera. Of course, USB 3.1 Type-C comes standard as the charging port and the battery capacity is a half-decent Lithium-Polymer 3,450mAh at 3.85 volts. is offered with internal storage capacities of 32GB, 64GB and 128GB.


Physical dimensions of the Nexus 6P are 159.3mm tall by 77.8mm wide by 7.3mm thin (6.27 x 3.06 x 0.29 inches) and a weight of just 178 grams (0.39 pounds), lighter than the iPhone 6S Plus, and comes a thin profile identical to the iPhone 6S Plus at just 7.3mm (0.29 inches).

Pricing for the Nexus 6P Matte Gold edition starts at $499 for the 32GB model on the Google Play Store.

Huawei has also overtaken Xiaomi as the number one smartphone maker in China, the largest telecommunications equipment manufacturer in the world, and is now the third largest smartphone seller in the world. In December, the company reported full-year revenue rise to 390 billion yuan ($60.1 billion) in 2015, over 35 percent higher than the previous year. The company is currently on 9to5Google’s “Five Android smartphone makers to watch in 2016” list and continues to make headlines and market impressions in international business journals.

Last modified on 16 January 2016
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