Smartphone companies are trying to one-up each other by releasing variants of their flagships. Samsung’s S10 series’ lowest-end model is the Galaxy S10e, while Huawei has the P30. Now, these “lowest end” models don’t skimp out on power though. Both of these come with flagship processors and many of the flagship features. So, we thought it would be interesting to compare these two devices. Here’s our take on Semi Flagship showdown: Samsung Galaxy S10e vs Huawei P30!
Samsung Galaxy S10e vs Huawei P30 Specs Comparison:
|Samsung Galaxy S10e||Huawei P30|
|Design||Glass body (Gorilla Glass 5), aluminum frame||Glass body, aluminum frame|
|Display||5.8-inch Dynamic AMOLED Full HD+ display, (1080 x 2280 pixels), HDR10+, punch-hole display||6.1-inch OLED Full HD+ display, (1080 x 2340 pixels), HDR10, water-drop notch|
|Rear Camera||Dual Camera setup, 12 MP primary lens with f/1.5 – 2.4 + 16 MP ultra-wide with f/2.2||Triple-camera setup, 40 MP Super Spectrum lens with f/1.8 + 16 MP ultra-wide with f/2.2 + 8 MP telephoto lens with f/2.4 (3X Optical Zoom)|
|Front Camera||10 MP with f/1.9, wide, Dual Pixel, PDAF||32 MP with f/2.0, wide, HDR|
|Chipset||Exynos 9820||Kirin 980|
|GPU||Mali-G76 MP12||Mali-G76 MP10|
|RAM||8 GB||8 GB|
|Storage||128 / 256 GB||64 / 128 / 256 GB|
|Operating System||Android 9.0 Pie with One UI||Android 9.0 Pie with EMUI 9.1|
|Color Options||Prism Black, Prism Blue||Breathing Crystal, Aurora Blue|
|Features||Fingerprint (side-mounted), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer, ANT+||Fingerprint (under-display), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer, 3.5 mm headphone jack|
|Battery||3100 mAh, 15-Watt Fast-Charging||3650 mAh, 22-Watt Fast Charging|
|Price||$750 (Rs.94,000) / Available for Rs.74,000 online via sastodeal||€799 (Rs.84,900)|
Design and Build
In terms of design and build quality, both these phones differ a lot. The Samsung Galaxy S10e has a glass back, which is Gorilla Glass 5, by the way, and is mostly safe against scratches and such. Plus, you also get the IP68 Dust and Water resistance. The P30, on the other hand, has a glass back, but it’s not Gorilla Glass, so, it’s more prone to scratches. And it is only IP53 rated against dust and splashes. So, the build quality goes to the S10e!
Also, the S10e has a new design language than its predecessors and is a breath of fresh air. It’s small, compact, fits in your hands just right, and even if the buttons are a little out of place, it’s easy to reach with your hands. The P30 Pro looks and feels similar to last year’s P20…down to the dual-tone gradient color choice. It also fits in your hands quite well.
But when you keep these two, side by side, the P30 just looks better than the S10e!
The Samsung Galaxy S10e, being a bit smaller, packs a 5.8” Dynamic AMOLED display while the P30 has a slightly larger 6.1” OLED panel. Now, Dynamic AMOLED is superior to regular OLED, in more ways than one. Dynamic AMOLED has better color reproduction, be more vivid and a 100% color accuracy in the DCI-P3 color gamut coverage. In addition, nobody, to date, has done a better job at displays than Samsung! Playing HDR 10 contents on both on same brightness levels reveals S10e to be superior!
But, to my surprise, playing normal content (regular Full HD+ video) on both phones at max brightness led to the P30 being slightly better. If you don’t believe me, you can check that out for yourself. The Dynamic AMOLED doesn’t make much of a difference against P30’s regular OLED panel in this regard. Maybe, it’s the better brightness, but the P30’s looks better.
In terms of the viewing experience, both are more or less the same. Both of these phones have a similar amount of bezels on the side and a chin. As for the notch layout, the S10e opted for a punch-hole one, calling it the Infinity-O. The P30 sticks with a water-drop style notch in the center. However, the size of these notches is the same. Be it punch-hole or a water-drop, it’s only the position that differs. It’s just a matter of preference where you prefer it to be. While I think that the S10e’s approach looks cleaner, the slightly bigger display of the P30 gives it an edge.
Okay, now, the cameras. Now, there have been numerous camera comparison videos between these two phones, so, this is going to be quick. I don’t feel the need to talk about every little detail in length, so, here goes.
The S10e packs dual cameras at the back – a regular 12 MP camera and a 16 MP ultra-wide camera. Whereas, the P30 has an edge with its triple set up – a 40 MP regular camera, a 16 MP ultra-wide and an 8 MP telephoto lens that gives you up to 3X Optical Zoom. And after clicking a lot of pictures with these two phones, here’s the conclusion:
The Samsung Galaxy S10e does a better job for your regular point-and-shoot photo sessions. The P30, on the other hand, has a lot of functions and modes to get that “right” picture to your necessity.
If we talk regular image quality, as you can see, the S10e produces warmer colors that look more pleasing to the eye. As for the P30, the color tone is as cold as my ex-girlfriend’s heart! However, none of these are quite that accurate though. The real look was somewhere between these two, but the S10e tips more to the accurate side on the scales. Also, you get a more accurate HDR on the S10e.
However, both of them pack plenty of details. There’s no clear winner in terms of the sharpness and such. But if you talk resolution, the P30 lets you take 40 MP images! But it’s a shame that you cannot take ultra-wide shots or zoom in with that lens, and the default sits at 10 MP anyways.
S10e’s Scene Optimizer does a good job of keeping the colors balanced and stuff while the AI mode on P30 is a bit more aggressive. While the normal images look cold with a slightly greenish-pinkish tint, the AI mode is a burst of oversaturated colors, and it’s the greens that take a lot of hit on it. But some pictures simply look great with the AI mode on!
In addition, the P30 has these various color modes – Vivid Colors for deeper colors for some stunning DSLR quality images and Smooth Colors which, seems to me, a slightly toned down version of the Vivid Mode. But use these modes only according to necessity, because these can make for highly polished and unnatural-looking photos as well.
Portrait mode, on both, is great. Edge detection, on both, can be a bit of a hit-and-miss, as it is, with most phone cameras. The Galaxy S10 series offers 4 different effects on its portrait images and lets you change the intensity of the background blur and effects post-clicks as well. It only suffers from edge-detection on the monochrome effect sometimes. The P30 series gives you quite a few of those effects, and it’s difficult to tell the difference between some of them. But there is no monochrome filter, which I liked on the S10e.
In terms of wide-angle images, the S10e gives you a wider angle than the P30, but there is a fish-eye effect in those photos, which is not the case with the P30. Colors on both look great, but the dynamic range on the P30 seems slightly better.
And, the main advantage the P30 has over the S10e is its telephoto lens. With a 3X Optical zoom, which goes all the way to a 30X digital, you can get shots you never imagined. Of course, keeping the view stable beyond 10X requires you to have a gimbal, and all that zoom is not even useful, but it is kinda fun to use.
Selfies, for me, were simply better on the P30. The 32 MP front camera on it just packs more details in it than the 10 MP on the S10e. Also, even with the wide-angle option the S10e, it cannot get all that angle the P30 can give you. Portrait selfies looked good on both of the phones, but my money is on the P30 here, too.
The night time is where the P30 shines! With its Night shot, it can take images that are simply not possible on the S10e. Of course, under ample lighting at night, it’s the S10e that does a better job. But night shots like these are simply a good option to have, albeit with a bit of noise in them. Even without the Night mode, the P30 takes good night shots, thanks to the RYYB filter on the lens.
As for videos, both have great video quality. But the S10e can take 4K videos at 60 fps while the P30 caps out at 30. Plus, video stabilization on the S10e is slightly better, while its Super Steady mode is a lot better as well. Even for Super-Slow motion, the quality of the S10e is better. But, the P30 offers you a lot of other image options, like a Super-Macro shot, which is not possible with the S10e.
So, it’s kinda like this: What the S10e offers, the P30 doesn’t have, and what the P30 offers, the S10e cannot give you.
Hence, some camera features are not comparable. But as I already said, the S10e is the better performer when it comes to regular point and shoot, but the P30 gives you a lot of options at your finger-tips.
Let’s discuss Performance next on Samsung Galaxy S10e vs Huawei P30 next. There’s not a lot to talk about it this regard, though. Both of them come with flagship processors – the Exynos 9820 on the S10e and Kirin 980 on the P30. And the performance on both is what you’d expect with flagships. They both fly through tasks, are super smooth and get things done without a hitch.
|Tests||Huawei P30||Samsung Galaxy S10e|
If we talk tests, however, the S10e stands tall with it decimating the scores on Geekbench 4 and AnTuTu scores. The P30 seems to have faster storage as shown by Androbench. But if you take a look at a speed test by Gary Explains, it’s the P30 that overpowers the S10e, because of the faster storage. Which is why… let’s not talk about them like these. After all, it’s the daily usage that matters.
And neither of them disappoint on that front. Both of them are zippy, and gaming goes without a hitch on any. I played as much PUBG on them, and both can run the game on ultra frame rates and HDR quality, without the slightest bit of stutter. Other games like Asphalt are a breeze as well, not to mention smaller games. However, the S10e tends to heat quite a bit sometimes, but it doesn’t happen every time I game. There were instances when it heated for no reason even when it was inside my pocket.
The S10e has a side mounted fingerprint scanner while the P30 has the fancy in-display one. However, the in-display scanner is still an Optic one, and not the Ultrasonic like on the S10 and S10+. Still, it’s as fast as the side-mounted sensor on the S10e. Of course, there will be some difference, but it’s not really noticeable. Face recognition, on both, is handled by the front camera, and are equally fast.
Now, this is the one part that keeps me going back to the S10e. It’s One UI is highly optimized, and just feels more user-friendly. The presence of an app-drawer is also another thing that I like. I like to keep my home screen clean, and that option is not there on the P30. It just makes for a cleaner user experience.
The P30’s EMUI 9.1 is no slouch. It’s good too, and easy enough to use. The UI is so optimized that sometimes, you’ll feel it be faster than the S10e, despite the test scores. But there’s something about the One UI that makes me prefer that over this. Maybe it’s the boxy looking icons…but One UI definitely seems better than EMUI 9.1.
This, however, is a sensitive topic for the S10e. With a small 3100 mAh battery, the phone struggles to last a whole day between charges. You have to be quite skimpy while using the phone if you want to make it last until your bedtime. Power users need to carry their charger with them, and even for normal users, the phone’s battery life can disappoint. And so, even if it does have the Wireless Power Share, it doesn’t really make sense.
The P30 has a bigger battery at 3650 mAh. But even for a not-so-big difference, the battery life is good on this one. It definitely lasts until your bedtime, and sometimes more. Maybe the reason is the software’s battery optimizer is very aggressive. It can freeze the apps in your background if not used for a while, but it does its job.
In addition, I also did a charging speed test. And guess who won? The P30’s 22-Watt Fast Charger leaves the S10e’s 15-Watt Adaptive Charging in the dust! The S10e takes about 95 minutes to go from 0 to 100 while the P30 does it in about 75 minutes.
So, at the end of Samsung Galaxy S10e vs Huawei P30, there is no clear winner here. Not surprised? I wasn’t either. These two cannot be compared in all of the aspects. There’s always some kind of a trade-off between the features these two have to offer. S10e’s build quality is superior but the P30 looks better. Samsung’s new display technology is unbeatable, but the P30 does well in normal viewing.
On the performance front, it’s a mixed bag of scores, but in terms of normal usage, both did exceptionally well. And in camera performance, my view remains unchanged. Again…if you want that effortless point and shoot, the S10e is the one to pick, but if you want more features, the P30 is the way to go.
And as much of a difficult decision, it is to pick one between the two, I personally would pick the Huawei P30. There, you have it! For me, the P30 is the better pick, mostly because of the battery life while choosing its trade-offs. My perspective is that; I can get used to the slightly heavy software of the P30, but I can’t get used to the skimpy battery life on the S10e!
Also, when it comes to the camera, I tend to experiment with all those features at my disposal. Looking at the images from the S10e makes me want the same level of image quality and colors, but the trade-off is something I’m willing to make. Plus, the scores don’t matter to me as much as the regular performance does. As for the pricing, the S10e is slightly cheaper, but the slightly larger cost, I think, is justified, with the extra telephoto lens alone. So, yes, for me, it’s the P30 that I’ll pick over the S10e.
Of course, that is just my opinion. Yours might differ. Because the Galaxy S10e is a great semi-flagship, too. So, do let us know your thoughts on this.