Huawei Mate 20 X review: Android gaming super-sized

Huawei Mate 20 X review: Android gaming, super-sized
Huawei Mate 20 X review: Android gaming, super-sized

The Mate 20 X is Huawei’s attempt at creating a gaming phone that’s capable of rivalling that the Nintendo Switch – currently the undisputed king of gaming.

If the pitch seems familiar, it should; it had been Razer’s claim on launch the imaginatively named Razer Phone 2. Asus subsequently followed suit with its ROG Phone, which comprised a remarkably similar controller peripheral to that of the Mate 20 X, one which makes it resemble a”1337″ Switch.

However, if the latter is what you’re after then you are going to have to look elsewhere. The Mate 20 X does little to justify its lofty claims of being a gaming device.

The peripheral the company made such a huge deal about at the telephone’s launch has since neglected to appear; as far as I can tellit isn’t on sale anywhere. Though it had been a part of this bundle, I can’t find the Mate 20 X being a rival to the Change. Android’s gaming library is not anywhere near grown enough to justify the comparison.

But if you merely need a giant pallet with top notch specs then the Huawei Mate 20 X is a good phone in its own right, probably to meet 99% of users’ needs – if you can stomach its huge dimensions.


The Mate 20 X is a behemoth of a smartphoneby phablet standards. Featuring a 7.2-inch display, half a decade ago it would have been classed as a tablet computer, not a phone. The moment I picked it up I had flashbacks to the time that I.

Coupled with its 8.1millimeter thickness, the Mate X 20 is a giant apparatus that requires some time to get used to. Even as a normal phablet user I found that the device somewhat difficult to navigate, and if you don’t have bear paws on your hands, you won’t be able to use it one-handed (even using the assistive software feature).

Happily, the Mate 20 X ticks all the right boxes design-wise. The phone looks like an Mate 20 Guru. It has a similar mixed metal and glass design, and near-identical blue coloring. The Mate 20 X feels from the hand for top, exceeding the chunky ROG Telephone and Razer Phone 2 – which have aesthetics and providing allure.

The telephone is pretty decent when it comes to performance, also. Round the back, you will find a small fingerprint scanner that’s neatly seated beneath the top tri-camera. In the bottom, you will find the currently charging interface and one of two speakers that are dual. The single atypical feature is the 3.5mm jack, which sits on its own top and makes the Mate 20 X certainly one of a select few handsets capable of connecting to cabled headphones with no dongle.

Audio quality from the dual speakers can not match until the Razer Phone 2, among the best phones in terms of sound quality for watching Netflix and gaming. Regardless, it’s still a cut above the majority of the phones I test.

Max volume is appropriately loud and the speakers offer a surprising amount of low-end, which can help make movies and games seem suitably immersive. The only disadvantage is that they’re side-facing, so it is too easy to cover them if holding the phone in landscape.

In case you’re looking for an alternate to the Note, then the Mate 20 X also has support for Huawei’s M-Pen3 stylus – although I can’t see many bothering, as you need to buy it separately and there is no way to dock it with the telephone.

Build quality is solid, but I’m not convinced the glass coupled with its hefty 232g weight – will endure even a moderate drop. There’s a transparent silicon instance so if you’re happier with the phone appearing even more chunky, this is not too big of a deal.

My only significant concern around the Mate 20 X’s design originates from the fact that, despite being marketed as a gaming phone, it doesn’t have any immediately obvious gaming features. Unlike the ROG Phone, there are not any extra”Air Trigger” controls. The game-focused attributes are confined to some custom cooling system as well as also the GPU Turbo 2.0 technology that’s you’ll find in pretty much every new Huawei and Honor Phone nowadays.


I can forgive the lack of ROG Phone-style peripherals, or custom controls, but for me personally the absence of a variable refresh speed display on any telephone being promoted at players is a frustratingly glaring omission. The Razer Phone was the first handset to incorporate a refresh rate, and remains a showcase of the reasons any phone that is entertainment-focused needs to have the attribute.

Variable refresh rates are common on most PC displays. For non-techies, it refers to how many times per minute an image is rendered by a screen. A number will imply since there’s less of a delay between when you enact a command content such as games will run and feel reactive and it being shown on-screen. A lower number means animations and articles will not be smooth, but the display will consume less power.