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Huawei Mate 10 vs Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) - Premium Smartphone Comparison

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We pit two phones that have drastically different philosophies but both are priced under PHP 32,990: The flagship Huawei Mate 10 and the Premium Samsung Galaxy A8+
Huawei Mate 10 vs Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) - Premium Smartphone Comparison
Mate 10 or A8+ (2018)?

The Huawei Mate 10 offers flagship performance and design without the IP68 waterproof rating that most flagships now today, but retains the 3.5 mm headphone jack.

On ther other hand the Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) offers waterproof IP68 rating certification with flagship features, but falters in the processor and GPU performance.

We are curious to see which one holds up better. Let's find out!

Huawei Mate 10 vs Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) Specs Comparison

Device Huawei Mate 10 Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018)
Display 5.9-inch QHD IPS 2560 x 1440 resolution w/ 2.5D curved glass and Gorilla Glass protection at 498 ppi 6-inch Super AMOLED 2220 x 1080 resolution w/ 2.5D curved glass and Gorilla Glass protection at 408 ppi
CPU 2.36GHz 64-bit Kirin 970 octa-core processor w/ NPU and i7 co-processor 2.2GHz 64-bit Exynos 7885 octa-core processor
GPU Mali-G72 MP12 Mali-G71 MP2
RAM 4GB 6GB
ROM 64GB ROM expandable via microSD card slot up to 256GB 64GB expandable via microSD card slot up to 256GB
Main Camera 20MP f/1.6 monochrome sensor + 12MP f/1.6 RGB sensor w/ 4-in-1 Hybrid AF, OIS, 2x zoom, and dual tone LED flash  16MP f/1.7 w/ PDAF and LED flash
Selfie Camera 8MP f/2.0 w/ screen flash 16MP f/1.9 + 8MP f/1.9 w/ screen flash
Battery 4,000mAh w/ 5A Super Charge 3,500mAh w/ fast charging
OS Android 8.0 Oreo w/ EMUI 8.0 Android 7.1.1 Nougat w/ Samsung Experience
Connectivity Connectivity: WiFi, 3G, LTE Cat 18, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, OTG, NFC, IR Blaster, GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS, dual SIM (hybrid)WiFi, LTE Cat 11, Bluetooth 5.0, OTG, NFC, GPS, A-GPS, dual SIM
SensorsAccelerometer, light, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, sound, magnetic, pressure
Accelerometer, light, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, sound, magnetic, pressure
Others Fingerprint sensor, IP53 splash resistance, stereo speakers, USB Type-C, Colors: champagne gold, black, pink gold, mocha brown Fingerprint sensor, USB Type-C, IP68 rating, Colors: black, gold
Dimensions 150.5 x 77.8 x 8.2 mm 159.9 x 75.7 x 8.3 mm
Weight 186 g 191 g
Price PHP 32,990 (PHP 29,990 sale price) PHP 32,990

Build Quality / Design

Shiny glass back panel!
Shiny glass back panel!

The Huawei Mate 10 has upped its game from the metal back of the Mate 9 to a mostly glass build with metal frame. It is beautiful with enough heft to make it feel solid. It comes with a screen protector pre-installed. It can be a fingerprint magnet and the 2.5D glass is a cause for easy slipping. Under that is a 5.9-inch 1440p QHD display with a 16:9 aspect ratio. 
Top view
Headphone hack IR blaster and microphone for the Mate 10 and a SIM card tray with microphone for A8+ (2018)
Bottom part
Mate 10: Speaker grill, USB Type-C port and microphone; Galaxy A8+ (2018): 3.5mm headphone jack and USB Type-C port 
A8+ (2018): Volume rocker; Mate 10: SIM card tray
A8+ (2018): Volume rocker; Mate 10: SIM card tray
Right side
A8+ (2018): Speaker grill and power button;  Mate 10: Volume rocker and power button

The Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) is equally as stunning with 2.5D glass at the front and back with a matte black frame which is also a fingerprint magnet and a cause for easy slipping. The display is a 6-inch FHD+ Super AMOLED screen. 

Both are well designed with their own strengths and weaknesses.

An interesting choice by Samsung is the speaker grill placement on the right side which prevents handheld covering of the speaker grill.

Another difference is the placement of the 3.5mm headphone jack with Samsung placing it at the bottom near the USB Type-C port while Huawei opted to place it on top with the IR blaster.

Display Quality

Big screens!
Big screens!

The Huawei Mate 10 carries the smaller 5.9-inch QHD IPS 2560 x 1440 resolution w/ 2.5D curved glass at 498 ppi with great resolution, contrast and good color accuracy. It has an option to make colors more vivid if you wanted. The Blacks are deep but could be deeper but falls short with the blacks of the Super AMOLED. At full resolution, it does take a toll on battery which is why we actually have the resolution at 1080p.

Both are bright enough to be visible even with the intense summer sun!

The Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) on the other hand has a 6-inch Super AMOLED 2220 x 1080 resolution w/ 2.5D curved glass at 408 ppi with the deepest blacks, good resolution and saturated colors. It may be 1080p but you will only notice that it is slightly less sharp than the QHD display. 

If color accuracy and resolution is a priority, we would look at the Huawei but if you like the saturated eye popping colors and better battery drain then the Samsung is for you.

Both has 10 points of touch.

Battery Life

Battery score of Mate 10
Battery score of Mate 10

The Huawei Mate 10 has a huge 4,000mAh w/ 5A Super Charge that charges in under 90 minutes. In our benchmarks it was reaching a little under 10 hours of battery performance.
Battery score of Galaxy A8+ (2018)
Battery score of Galaxy A8+ (2018)

On the other hand Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) has a 3,500mAh battery with fast adaptive charging at under 90 minutes. The benchmark results in at least 13 hours of performance.

Huawei is also promoting the internal A.I. helps battery consumption by automatically closing apps that you aren't using and I notice this but it wasn't as dramatic improvement as the Huawei Mate 10 Pro and the phone still underperformed against the A8+ despite the larger battery capacity. This could be due to the higher resolution display and processor.

In real life use, the A8+ would have 20 to 25 percent battery at the end of the work day while the Huawei Mate 10 was reaching 15 to 20 percent at the end of the day.

Given the underpowered processor, lower resolution display and larger battery capacity, the Samsung lasts longer but it is clear that the Huawei is the more efficient device given the disadvantage caused the performance of the Mate 10 was not too far from the A8+.

Audio Quality

Unfortunately, only the Mate 10 has stereo speakers, but the stereo implementation here is the second speaker on the earpiece isn't too powerful and only activates when in landscape mode.

The audible benefit is there but maybe unnoticeable by most people. Both are decent in quality and has clean output with less distortion even on max volume. Both can fill a small room but will struggle in a noisy environment.

For headphone audio, both can do HiFi lossless audio playback. Most people will be happy with the out of both phones but for discerning audiophiles, it may be better to visit a store near you and try them out for yourselves.

Both are also capable of recording audio in stereo quality. Both are amazing for calls too.

Camera

Camera apps at a glance!
Camera apps at a glance!

The Huawei Mate 10's 20MP f/1.6 monochrome sensor + 12MP f/1.6 RGB sensor w/ 4-in-1 Hybrid AF, OIS, 2x zoom, and dual tone LED flash gave a camera performance that was a major leap from the already great performing P10 because of refined software and hardware.

It also has a more robust camera app with more options for manual mode and more modes like light trails, monochrome and many more. (a lot of which we covered in the review)

It excels in almost every scenario and from our camera comparisons with the Note 8, it was neck and neck. It is safe to say that at the price, the Mate 10 is a winner.

Read: Huawei Mate 10 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Mini Lowlight Main Camera Comparison

On the other hand, the Samsung Galaxy A8+ with 16MP f/1.7 w/ PDAF and LED flash that is no slouch either. Even though it doesn't have the dual OIS cameras of the Note 8, this can compete with the Mate 10. In some situations it wins, while on some the Mate 10 wins.

For the A8, the UI is incredibly simple compared to the huge number of settings and modes from the Mate 10. This makes it user friendly, but lacking.

Both give highly detailed images with popping colors and good contrast. The Mate 10 edges out with noise control and better built-in app. What was consistent was that the Mate 10 tended to balance the exposure with a warmer tint and a wider field of view while the A8+ tended to have saturated colors with correct exposure in low light but may over exposure during daylight. The A8+ also has to our eyes better bokeh but with a tighter field of view.

In lowlight, the Mate 10 was able to render better detail but the white balance was usually off while the A8+ was softer but was more accurate in exposure and white balance. The Mate 10 renders images towards the warmer spectrum. It feels off and not a good thing for people who like color accurate images.

Both performed wonderfully and in a technical standpoint, both have their strengths and weaknesses and either is a good choice depending on personal preferences.

The wildcard here is the A.I. scene detection of the Huawei Mate 10 where it can detect subjects like people, cats, dogs, food, plants, and the like while adjusting the settings to best suit each subject. We found that the phone was able to detect these select objects accurately and we did find the resulting pictures to be good. 

Lastly, the on-screen flash of the A8+ (2018) is the best we've seen. It is bright enough to illuminate the subjects but never overexposes them.

Rear Camera Samples

Mate 10 indoor daylight
Mate 10 indoor daylight
Galaxy A8+ (2018) indoor daylight
Galaxy A8+ (2018) indoor daylight
Mate 10 outdoor bokeh
Mate 10 outdoor bokeh
Galaxy A8+ (2018) outdoor bokeh
Galaxy A8+ (2018) outdoor bokeh
Mate 10 lowlight
Mate 10 lowlight
Galaxy A8+ (2018) lowlight
Galaxy A8+ (2018) lowlight

The Mate 10's 8MP f/2.0 w/ screen flash may have a lower resolution than the A8+ (2018)'s dual 16MP f/1.9 + 8MP f/1.9 w/ screen flash.

But, in almost all our selfie images, it is clear that the Mate 10 produced better rendering of contrast which adds to the depth and tonality of the details of the images. The Mate 10 selfie colors are on the warmer and more saturated side, though.

However, the A8+ (2018)'s selfies were more accurate in colors and were realistic in our eyes.

In terms of balanced exposure in day light, both are mostly accurate but in low light the Mate 10 was able to capture accurately the lighting conditions of the subject being captured on the camera app. 

The bokeh or live focus out of focus areas are nice on both but we prefer the transition between the in-focus to the out-of-focus areas like the tips of the hair to be better softened by the Samsung A8+ (2018). The Mate 10's A.I. selfie implementation good, but is still a bit harsh.

Selfie Camera Samples

Mate 10 daylight
Mate 10 daylight
Galaxy A8+ (2018) daylight
Galaxy A8+ (2018) daylight
Mate 10 indoor
Mate 10 indoor
Galaxy A8+ (2018) indoor
Galaxy A8+ (2018) indoor
Mate 10 lowlight bokeh
Mate 10 lowlight bokeh
Galaxy A8+ (2018) lowlight bokeh
Galaxy A8+ (2018) lowlight bokeh

For more Huawei Mate 10 camera samples: Huawei Mate 10: First Camera Samples
For more Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) camera samples: Samsung Galaxy A8 (2018) and Galaxy A8+ (2018): First Camera Samples

The Mate 10 can shoot up to 4K videos at 30 frames per second. Then it has up to 60 frames on 1080p. Quality of the video is even better and more stabilized than ever.

But, when compared with Galaxy A8+ can only shoot at 1080p without control on frame rates and it doesn't have OIS, only EIS. 

The footage from both phones at 1080p at 30 fps are great and are comparable to each other but it is because of the OIS does the Huawei able to deliver smoother handheld footage that we have to give it to the Mate 10.

Performance

Huawei Mate 10 benchmark scores
Huawei Mate 10 benchmark scores

In synthetic benchmarks, the clear winner is the Mate 10 with nearly double the performance score of the A8+.

Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) benchmark scores
Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) benchmark scores

But the A8+ (2018) is able to do the standard tasks like social media, web surfing, video streaming and decent gaming without problem but not as great as the Mate 10. The 6GB of RAM also allows for multiple apps in the background.

Both are fast, but the Mate 10 is just way faster!

In real life, the difference in speed and general performance is hardly noticeable unless we played demanding games, playbacked lossless audio files and left open a lot of apps in the background.

During extended playback of 720p videos over YouTube, the Mate 10 warmed up slightly more than the A8+.

The Mate 10 also has A.I. with deep learning which can further improve the performance over time.

Related: Top 5 practical uses of Huawei Mate 10 / Mate 10 Pro's A.I.

It even has Easy Projection feature that transforms your Mate 10 into a PC via USB Type-C to HDMI on an external monitor.

Connectivity-wise, the Mate 10 has the more advanced 4.5G mobile data support and has an IR Blaster that can be used as a remote control.

On the other hand, the Samsung Galaxy A8+ has Bluetooth 5.0. Both have OTG. Signal quality is strong on both as well.

Huawei Mate 10 advantages - Higher resolution display with better color accuracy, powerful processor and GPU performance, robust camera hardware with OIS, feature-rich camera app, and 4K video recording, IR blaster, stereo speakers
Samsung Galaxy A8+ advantages - Super AMOLED display with 18:9 aspect ratio, water resistance, longer battery life, Bluetooth 5.0

Verdict

They both have their own merits like the Super AMOLED with deeper blacks and wider aspect ratio, improved Bluetooth 5.0 and longer battery performance.

On the other hand, the Mate 10 is a monster for the price. The Mate 10 has a more accurate display and better camera hardware and software. 

Sure the A8+ does have flagship features, but the Mate 10 is a flagship for less. We have to recommend the Mate 10 more unless you prefer the advantages of the A8+ that we stated above.

So, which one will you pick?

For our Huawei Mate 10 full review: Huawei Mate 10 Review - The new FLAGSHIP killer!
For our Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) full review: Samsung Galaxy A8+ (2018) Review - Premium Selfie Phone
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