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Huawei P50 Pocket Foldable Review in detail | Huawei P50 vs Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3

The Huawei P50 Pocket is definitely a phone that's designed to turn heads. If you're a fan of foldables or Flip phones, this phone should really be on your radar and here's why.

huawei p50 pocket foldable phone full detailed review

Rather than a traditional review because you can find many excellent ones already online, I wanted to focus on what this phone does really well and what features some other Flip phones might want to take on board. I'm talking about the Z Flip 4. Why? Well by now you probably know this phone is not available to buy in America because of ongoing restrictions imposed by the US government. This also means that there are no Google services available, so apps like Gmail, Google maps and even some other apps that rely on the Google mobile framework  kind of a non-starter on this without some more complicated workarounds. You can of course have say third-party apps act as kind of a go-between or an intermediary but as Mr. Mobile revealed in his excellent review, Microsoft apps actually do work on this phone natively and you can just log into your Google accounts through those.

Overall Design

So let's start by being slightly superficial and talking about the design. Now clearly there is something special about this phone when you pull it out of the box; it really is ostentatious in all the right ways. That gold finish just screams expensive, the etched design that is supposed to evoke looks beautiful and I don't use that word lightly when it comes to describing tech. Now of course you do pay extra for this particular design as it costs 1600 Euros which is roughly equivalent to 1750 US dollars.

huawei p50 pocket foldable phone full review

There is a slightly more understated white version that does cost a little less but there is no doubt that this is a pricey phone. We also have to talk about that circular display, I really like the aesthetics of it and sure it's just not as practical as the rectangular front display on something like the Z Flip 3 especially when it comes to reading text notifications but there is just something about that circular design that mirrors the camera module that really does feel special.

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The Hinge Mechanism on the Huawei P50 Pocket

It has got this seamless hinge and that essentially means when you shut the phone there is no gap that is formed by closing the two halves unlike the slight gap I should say on the Z Flip 3. Honestly it's not a deal breaker on this phone at all but it doesn't look as polished when you put these two side by side. It also means that the Pocketability of the P50 Pocket is improved slightly also because there's just no real room for lots of dust and grime from your Pocket to get inside the phone as much as there is on the Z Flip 3. The hinge also means that we do need to talk about that crease. It definitely feels less prominent on the P50 Pocket than it does on the Z Flip 3. I don't feel it underneath my thumb anywhere near as much as I do on the Samsung phone with the Z Flip 3. You definitely get used to having the crease there and honestly after a while it kind of just ends up fading into the background. You just don't even see it anymore except for say when you're watching a movie or playing a game and the light hits it just right and then you're reminded oh yeah I am using a foldable after all.

huawei p50 pocket foldable phone hinge mechanism

Speaking of light, the P50 Pocket screen is less reflective than that on the Z Flip 3 and I really hope that it's something that Samsung takes into consideration for its next Flip phone. It is easier to see the display on the P50 Pocket outside; not because of the screen brightness but because there are less reflections and I really noticed this when I was taking photos outside. But of course there are some compromises with the design namely around the hinge and how it stays open or doesn't stay open in certain configurations unlike the fairly secure hinge on the Z Flip 3 and the split screen experience hasn't really been optimized for certain configurations. Particularly noticeable when you are using the phone say like this in a kind of tripod, makeshift tripod orientation using the camera and gallery apps, yeah just doesn't work as well as the Z Flip 3.

Camera Review of Huawei P50 Pocket

The cameras on the Z Flip 3 are fine but they do feel like probably one of the compromises that needed to be made in some ways for the Flip form factor. I took a couple of side-by-side images from both of the phones to show you the differences between the two and what areas that the Z Flip 4 could hopefully improve on specifically around things like dynamic range.

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The following photo you can see in the highlight area kind of in the cloud between the clouds and the trees in the sky the P50 Pocket retains much more detail than the Z Flip 3. And although its personal preference, I do prefer the tones and colors and the way it treats things like saturation on the P50 Pocket compared to the Z Flip 3 which sometimes can look a little bit too over the top for me.

huawei p50 pocket foldable phone camera samples

There's also a macro mode on the P50 Pocket that lets you get a lot closer to your subjects than you can on the Z Flip 3 and a 40-megapixel main rear sensor if you want to take higher resolution images. Even though I have found that generally the pixel bin shots do look a lot better than those 40 megapixel ones. It's not all practical though there is a bizarre ultra spectrum camera that I'm really just not sure of the real world use case for but it's fun.

Battery Life and Storage

The P50 Pocket does have a 4000 milliamp hour battery which is larger than the 3300 milliampere hour on the Z Flip 3. This comes with a dual battery, pretty much the same as the original Z-Flip. Now if you've used the Z Flip 3, you'll know the battery life. Usually you get around only three to four hours of screen on time at 120 hertz on the main display. The P50 Pocket, probably going to get 10-11 hours of battery life, so it might not make it through the day for you. Although there are some caveats specifically.

huawei p50 pocket foldable phone battery review

This phone only has 4G LTE, there's no 5G support like on the Samsung phone. Something I am very glad to see on the P50 Pocket is the expandable storage. If you've read any of my previous phone reviews, you'll know I continue to bemoan the loss of expandable storage on Android phones. Specifically on Samsung phones in the past year and a half or so. The P50 Pocket does use Nano memory which is the Huawei proprietary format but still if you are taking a lot of 4k videos, you're downloading countless apps, you're taking a lot of photos, then how is it not a good thing to have expandable storage? that's my question.

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So what's the Flip side of all this? There are a couple of significant downsides on top of those existing ones, the first is water resistance and durability overall. Now Samsung really did do a total 180 when it came to how I think about treating my foldables and Flip phones with its water resistance at ipx8 on the Z Fold 3 and the Z Flip 3. There is no real track record with the P50 pro, we just don't know how well it's going to hold up given that this is Huawei's first Flip phone in this particular form factor so only time will tell.

huawei p50 pocket foldable phone vs samsung galaxy z flip 3

Connectivity and 4G LTE support only is also another significant downside for me and Huawei's EMUI is honestly got more of a learning curve than I really expected especially when it comes to things like it's more aggressive battery management and closing background apps. I honestly never thought I would be longing for One UI but here we are. I also had this really weird situation where apps that I definitely didn't install, installed themselves on the phone. I left the phone overnight, came back to it in the morning and saw various different apps installed on it. Regardless the P50 Pocket is a beautiful phone that you probably won't buy, but it does set the bar really high for other foldable and Flip phones. Here's hoping that other manufacturers are taking notice, thanks so much for reading as always  we'd love to hear your thoughts about this particular phone or the state of foldables and Flip phones in general. You can hit us up in the comments or find us on your favorite social media platform and don’t forget to share this one with your friends.

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