I've had my M30P imported from China for just under a week now and I'm coming from a P30P that I've used for 6 months.
My overall experience and feelings for it is very positive.
There wasn't anything wrong with my P30P from before and I loved most things about the phone (which you'll see me reference it a lot in some of the points below) but the Chinese prices on the M30P and to be first in line for the latest updates for once just tempted me too much. I'll be basing my experiences and comparisons on the P30P as a result since it's the only other rival phone I can compare it against and I suspect a lot of people will want to know how they both stack up anyway
+ Display appears slightly brighter than the P30P with very punchy colours, contrast, deep blacks and decent sunlight readability. The panel isn't quite up there with the Note 10+ but it's still really good and isn't a disappointment or cause for concern.
+ Gorgeous looking waterfall display that spills on to the edges and the smaller chin really makes it stand out from all the other phones.
+ Has Gorilla Glass 6 whereas the P30P didn't have any form of Gorilla Glass Protection, and the M20P had v5 (still worth putting a screen protector on though!)
- Not a fan of the notch even though it's smaller than the iPhone 11's one as well as last year's M20P
+ Consistently handles noise, artifacts and retains better fine details than P30P in both daylight and night shots - this is due to the newer, improved ISP on a hardware level and camera tweaks on a software level.
+ Industry-leading best in class wide angle lens. It's got a much bigger f/1.8 aperture and the sensor size of 1/1.54" that really shows its prowess in both day time and night shots that no other competitor can currently offer from a hardware level. Let's not forget it can do pixel binning since it's actually outputting 10mp shots and the new ISP further enhances it (namely in dealing with noise). All in all, you get more preserved details in both the shadows and highlights, better colour balance, nicer dynamic range and the hardware front here really delivers in all aspects of the shooting conditions. I compared it with an iPhone 11 and a Note 10+ at my local Samsung and Apple stores respectively and the M30P's wide angle is just miles ahead better and I can't see other brands having a superior wide angle lens anytime soon.
+ Sometimes, in ideal lighting and certain scenarios, I will get even BETTER daytime shots on the wide angle than the main sensor as it's not RYYB and the fact that it's got an even bigger sensor size than that actually gives it some advantages to the main lens and compared to generally most other wide angle lens from other phones.
+ Much better video capture capabilities than the P30P as videos seem better stabilized, with less choppiness when panning around the scene and it can finally record 4k in 60FPS too due to the newer ISP. Wide angle video capture is miles better than the P30P's one due to the significantly superior hardware, including in low light.
+ I love its quad rear camera design and its shiny ring more than similar rivals' implementations by the iPhone 11 and Pixel 4 and even the M20P - just feel like saying it as I've grown to like it now!
+ ToF sensor feels slightly better than the one found in the P30P - my portrait mode shots and bokeh effects tend to be more precise with less clipping and better edge detection around subjects
+ 7680FPS video recording isn't just a stunt as it does work and is fun to use when you want to show off something cool and playful with it. No other smartphone in the industry comes close.
+ Night Mode shots with both the primary and wide angle lens has been improved further against the P30P which was already the king of low light - it captures the smaller details better (mainly only noticed when you zoom or crop in), has less noise and better colour balance in almost every shot I took in low light.
- Still occasionally gives off warmer, red tinge to my photos when shooting with the primary main sensor, but rarely ever happens in all circumstances when using the wide angle sensor (most likely because it's not RYYB). Hopefully resolved with future software updates.
- No periscope 5x optical zoom and 50x digital zoom capability. You now get 3x optical and 3x digital instead which isn't entirely a dealbreaker as most people won't be using this all the time but I feel it needs to be said anyway.
- I've seen some minor lens flare that I did not ever seem to get on the P30P, or on any other phone I've owned to date.
- Front selfie camera has improved a bit from the P30P but it still applies a lot of digital make-up to my face and smooths out my skin a bit too much for my liking, and that's even with the beauty level set to the lowest in the UI. It's once again still not on the same league as the iPhone 11 or Note 10's front cameras.
- No macro-mode for close up shots of up to 2.5cm from the subject which used to be found on the P30P - I understand this is due to the new sensors that no longer allow it
- Still no automatic HDR toggle for either of the primary or wide angle sensors - you need to enable it manually each time under "More" in the camera settings
+ Lasts really long due to the combination of the Kirin 990 on the newest 7nm+ EUV node, a massive 4500mAh battery and potentially even being based on Android 10's behind-the-scenes battery optimizations/algorithms (I got more SOT than my P30P)
+ For me, the lack of GMS/Google Play Services definitely improved my battery life too
+ I still get that same 40w supercharge goodness which tops up the battery incredibly quick without overheating my phone (about 0-70% in 30mins just like before). I've also got a 40w Huawei Supercharge power bank which is compatible with the M30P.
- "3x faster reverse wireless charging" is still largely a gimmick as it's not that much of an improvement from the previous gen (from 2.5W to 7.5w now) in every day practical use but I can see how it can be useful in emergency situations where even a few % can be useful for a friend if he/she doesn't have a portable charger
Performance and Software
+ Android 10 is very fluid, responsive and snappy thanks to UFS 3.0 being used for the first time by Huawei as well as the faster clocked Kirin 990 chip doing its job.
+ I can still use most of my essential day-to-day apps without Google Play Services by sideloading them, including Brave (which I prefer over Chrome all the way), Google Maps, Gmail (via the native Huawei mail handler), Instagram and WhatsApp
+ GPS accuracy in apps such as Google Maps, Cellular strength and mobile data speeds equally as fast and reliable as my P30P or if not slightly better from what I've noticed
+ Kirin 990 chipset performs well despite not using ARM's newest Cortex A77 cores, and shines in the battery life department and in games due to the optimizations to both the CPU +GPU
+ First in line to get the latest software updates if you purchase the Chinese LIO-AL00 model - I've already had 4 in less than a week and most were at least 1GB in size so they weren't all minor patches
- No Google Play Services out of the box, so you'll need to somehow restore your phone using HiSuite with a known working backup that has it or find alternative apps that don't rely on it
- My CN LIO-AL00 had a lot of bloatware that I couldn't easily uninstall and disable under the Settings, so I had to remove a lot of them via adb on my Desktop which took up a lot of time
+ Phone call and speaker sound quality (especially at mid to higher volumes) feels a fair bit louder, fuller, clearer, richer and better balanced than the P30P
+ Audio capture when recording videos seems to be improved by a minor amount over the P30P
- Still has a single downwards firing speaker. Where's the dual stereo nowadays?
I hope people will find my well-balanced comparison helpful between the M30P and my P30P!