If you don’t want an iPhone, the OnePlus 7 Pro and Huawei P30 Pro should be high on your list of flagship Android phones to consider. Both have the best specs you can get in 2019, lovely premium designs and screaming performance.
Here’s our head to head comparison to help you decide which is best for you.
For an in-depth read on each phone there’s our OnePlus 7 Pro review and Huawei P30 Pro review.
Price and availability
The Huawei P30 Pro costs £899 from Carphone Warehouse, which also offers it on contract. Huawei phones are banned from sale in the US, which we’ll get into.
There’s also a regular OnePlus 7 that starts at £499 (on sale 4 June in the UK), but it is more similar to the OnePlus 6T in design with a few internal spec updates to the processor and cameras. We compare the OnePlus 7 Pro to the OnePlus 7 here.
A regular Huawei P30 is also available at £699 in the UK. See what the differences are between the P30 and the P30 Pro here.
From now, we are comparing the high-end OnePlus 7 Pro and Huawei P30 Pro but it’s worth noting the cheaper two phones in the series if you want a high-end phone for even less.
The Huawei factor
At the time of writing, Huawei phones have been banned from sale in the US and the company as a whole banned from trading with US companies. This includes Google, and it’s unclear it the P30 Pro will continue to receive proper Google Play, app and security support in the future.
Despite the US government providing no proof of Huawei security risks we are now at a point where it’s off-putting to buy a Huawei phone if it won’t continue to get Google support. Right now, we’d recommend buying the OnePlus 7 Pro over the Huawei P30 Pro for this reason.
If this doesn’t bother you then read on.
The two phones both have high-end processors with gobs of RAM meaning they are two of the quickest phones around. But the sparseness and optimisation of the OnePlus 7 Pro (Snapdragon 855, 6/8/12GB RAM options) means it is faster and pretty much the fastest phone in the world at its release.
The Huawei P30 Pro (Kirin 980, 8GB RAM) is no slouch though, and its EMUI software skin is much improved in Android 9 Pie. It beats the OnePlus’s triple camera set up by have four rear camera sensors that can achieve an amazing 10x zoom with barely any loss of quality.
Digital zoom on the P30 Pro can go up to 50x, and it’s genuinely amazing. No other phone can touch it at the time of writing. The OnePlus 7 Pro’s cameras are decent and will be acceptable for most people – but if you are geeking out on the specs, the extra you’ll spend on the P30 Pro will get you some of the best smartphone cameras ever made.
The OnePlus 7 Pro is a very large phone with a 6.67in display. We like it as it has no notch, instead opting for a mechanical pop up selfie camera. The phone is 162.6 x 75.9 x 8.8 mm – taller, wider and thicker than the 158 x 73.4 x 8.4 mm P30 Pro. But even Huawei’s phone is unwieldy with a 6.47in display, with a small half circle notch at the top.
We prefer the display on the 7 Pro thanks to its stunning 90Hz refresh rate. This means it looks far smoother and quicker than any other smartphone out there, the P30 Pro included. Both OLEDs are outstanding, but OnePlus clinches it here.
Both phones have curved edge displays that help them look sleek, but you occasionally find your palm registering an unwanted press compared to using a phone with a flat display.
Under the skin
There are a few differences on the inside of these fragile glass phones worth noting. The P30 Pro doesn’t have a traditional earpiece – instead it uses a technique that vibrates the display to project sound. It’s mad, and even madder that it actually works. OnePlus sticks with a slim earpiece on the thin top bezel.
It means that the OnePlus has stereo speakers, but the P30 Pro does not – a shame. The Huawei phone beats the OnePlus in other areas by having both wireless charging and IP68 water and dust resistance.
OnePlus says the 7 Pro is waterproof but doesn’t pay to get an IP certification – and it straight up doesn’t put wireless charging in. The 7 Pro charges very fast with 30W wired charging but the P30 Pro goes better with 40W for insanely fast wired top ups. The P30 Pro also lasts longer on a single charge in real world use.
Neither phone has a headphone jack but both ship with 3.5mm headphone jack dongles in the boxes.
Both Android, both different
Your entire decision might come down to the software though. We prefer OnePlus’ OxygenOS as it is cleaner, faster and less cluttered than Huawei’s EMUI.
EMUI is perfectly serviceable, but it is visually busier and unfortunately pushes a fair bit of Huawei’s bloatware in your face from background process notifications to unwanted add-ons like Hi-Care and Huawei cloud services.
If you want the best cameras ever on a smartphone – full stop – then the Huawei P30 Pro is the best choice. It is demonstrably better at photography than the OnePlus 7 Pro. Huawei’s battery life is also noticeably better.
However, the 7 Pro is better in our opinion in most other areas – its 90Hz screen is a first and will spoil your eyes with its amazing smoothness, there’s no notch in the display and the software is more attractive. And of course, it’s over £300 cheaper.