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Eight EMUI 11 and HMS features that elevate new Huawei Mate 40 Series phones

When we get excited about the latest hardware announcements, we often focus on the specifics of the new hardware: the cameras, the build quality, the screen. But these days, the software makes all the difference.

RV Studios for Huawei
5 min read

So off the back of the recent Huawei Mate 40 Series launch event, we're digging into the big updates coming to the new phones through the EMUI 11 update. "Human-centred design" framed the pitch this year, aiming to improve many interactions and usage styles to help get things done, or have fun, in more meaningful ways.



Huawei Mobile Services also now offers lots of personalisation, with theme packs available to make your phone more individual than ever. Be inspired by artists, literature and more to make your phone feel like home.

The AppGallery is also growing fast, with two million developers now registered into the ecosystem and 500 million monthly active users. The store is growing fast and getting easier by the day to find the apps that give you exactly what you're looking for.


The most obvious area here is the new Always-On Display (AOD) setup, which gives much greater personalisation than ever before. Custom choices on colours and shapes – even animated GIFs are welcome – while you can also leave yourself a nice message to see each time you pick up the device.

The new Eyes On Display system also means that just looking at your screen will bring it to life and the addition of Gesture Control means you can then wave, swipe or hold your hand over the phone to trigger various features. Scroll, swipe and even 'press' (just pretend to press, don't actually touch) to trigger interactions. So you can now read, watch, play, change volume and answer calls all without ever touching your phone.


One of the big strengths of Huawei hardware has been cross-device interactions through Huawei Share. Under past versions, the ability to use your smartphone directly on your laptop screen has been an impressive feature, or to share your laptop screen to your phone. Drag-and-drop file sharing has also been a seamless feature users have enjoyed.

With EMUI 11 that gets even stronger, with the arrival of a Multi-screen Collaboration feature that lets you open up to three different smartphone apps in separate windows on your PC desktop. A great way to combine the power of desktop apps with the comfort of your favourite apps from your smartphone.

A more desktop-like experience is also available for EMUI 11 phones with Smart Multi-Window, which lets you run windows of different apps directly on your handset. Watch a video that hovers over your web browser, for example, or take notes while you catch up on email.

A lot of added convenience and usefulness thanks to the EMUI 11 updates.

Petal Search

With the launch of Petal Search, HMS is now levelling up global Huawei users' digital experience. Huawei has invested heavily in its official search engine, which now operates in over 170 countries and regions around the world, with support for over 50 languages.

Search news, video, images, shopping, travel, business details and perform plenty of simple lookups like the weather, exchange rates and the always handy calculator functions. Local information is always a big target for search and that's been given a greater emphasis in the latest version of Petal Search.

The Petal Search updates also bring a cleaner, more visual interface, along with some clever new AI search tricks. This includes image-based search – take a photo of a recipe and Petal Search will hunt down related information. Take a photo of a landmark and find out more about it.

Find out more about what's new with Petal Search here.

Petal Maps

Huawei's own map application has been launched in more than 140 countries and regions, with live transit information for more major cities around the world. You can also put those Huawei Mate 40 Series gesture controls to switch between navigation view and map overview by simply using 'air press' towards the screen with their palms. These smart interactions significantly enhance the ease of travel. Petal Maps currently supports voice navigation including English, French, German, Spanish, Italian and Mandarin.


Huawei Docs is also now available in over 100 countries and regions, allowing viewing and editing of over 50 document formats, including PDF, PPT and DOC. Your documents will sync in real-time via the cloud to keep everything up to date in all the places you need it. Edit on the go and present on your laptop, without skipping a beat.

Security and privacy

EMUI bakes in a lot more security features than previously too. A lot of this focuses on improving privacy by default. One of the simplest but most elegant ways is to strip personal information from any photo shared from the device. Location, time, and other details will be removed by default so you can share images knowing they won't share more than the great picture you captured.

On the more advanced end, a new AI Private View feature will use facial recognition to only show you personal information in notifications and messages. If it notices other faces within view it will keep details hidden. This feature also holds private notifications back when you are sharing your phone screen to another device to ensure you aren't accidentally revealing private information when running a presentation, for example.

Long-term performance

Ultimately, these days we want our phones to have staying power. So with the Huawei Mate 40 Pro, the Kirin 9000 processor and EMUI 11, Huawei is promoting a 36 month lifetime for new phones to be running at their best.

In testing, Huawei has seen independent data suggest battery life will only drop by 2.5% over 36 months, which is an impressive marriage of hardware and software working together to maximise the long-term life of a phone.

Our smartphones are an investment, so it's always nice to hear this kind of assurance that we can stick with the device over the long haul.

Along with launching on the Huawei Mate 40 Series devices, the latest EMUI 11 and HMS updates will also roll out to Huawei P40 Series handsets (except the P40 lite) and Huawei Mate 30 Series phones soon.