How do I connect my Huawei smartphone to my computer with Windows?

If you own an Android smartphone or tablet made by Huawei and you want a way to connect it to your Windows PC, you should use HiSuite. You can use it to do things such as browse and import files from your smartphone, as well as send messages, take screenshots, or backup your Android smartphone, all while sitting comfortably in front of your Windows PC. Let's see how to set up HiSuite and use it to connect your Huawei smartphone with your Windows computer:

NOTE: This guide was created using a computer with Windows 10 and a Huawei P10 smartphone with Android 8 Oreo. The HiSuite apps for Windows and Android should work similarly on all Windows computers and Huawei smartphones and tablets.

Using HiSuite versus other methods to connect a Huawei smartphone to a Windows 10 PC

HiSuite is Huawei's solution for connecting your Android device to your Windows computer. It is a combination of two apps: one for Windows and another for Android. The apps are designed to connect using a USB cable. Please note that we found numerous references to a WiFi connection using HiSuite, but they seem to point to older versions of the app. This feature seems to be gone from the latest version that we used while creating this tutorial. Once you connect your smartphone to your Windows computer, you can perform the following activities:

  • Overview, import and export contacts, messages, pictures, videos, and files.
  • View and uninstall the apps on your Huawei device.
  • Synchronize your contacts and calendar with Microsoft Outlook.
  • Mirror the screen of the Huawei smartphone on your Windows computer.
  • Take screenshots of the smartphone's screen.
  • Back Up the Huawei smartphone on the computer and Restore from it.
  • Update the firmware of your Huawei smartphone.
  • Perform System Recovery on a smartphone that you cannot turn on.

These features are accessed through three different areas of the interface:

  • The buttons on the image of your Huawei smartphone.
  • My Device - which has different cards that act as shortcuts.
  • The buttons on the bottom area of the HiSuite app.
The user interface elements of HiSuite

The user interface of HiSuite can be a bit confusing, especially because the smartphone screen image buttons do not show up unless you hover your mouse on them. Once you get used to the interface, it gets easy, but we wish Huawei had a better design.

If you want to check the full list of features as described by Huawei, check the HiSuite features page.

If you do not want to use the app offered by Huawei, there are alternative solutions for connecting Windows computers with Android devices although none of them offers all the features from HiSuite:

Install HiSuite on your Windows computer

HiSuite starts the installation with a Windows app developed by Huawei to integrate their devices (smartphones and tablets) with Windows computers. In your web browser, navigate to the HiSuite support page, and download the installation file. Run the installation file in Windows, named HiSuite_[version_number].exe, and follow the installation wizard without yet connecting the Huawei device to your computer.

Installing HiSuite in Windows

To make sure that you have the latest version of the HiSuite app for Windows, click or tap the name of the app in the bottom-left corner, written in small letters.

Check the version of HiSuite

If you find that there is a new version available, press the Update button.

New version available for HiSuite

After the new version is downloaded and installed, you are ready to connect your Huawei smartphone or tablet to your Windows computer.

Install and activate HiSuite on your Huawei device

Open HiSuite and connect your Huawei smartphone to your Windows computer by using a USB cable.

Huawei smartphone connected via a USB cable to a PC

Your Huawei smartphone needs a couple of adjustments. The first one is to allow HiSuite to connect to your smartphone. Huawei has introduced a particular setting for HiSuite in their Android implementation. The message on the screen is quite explicit about what you have to do: "Go to Settings and enter HDB in the search box, and touch Allow HiSuite to use HDB."

Allow HiSuite to use HDB message

Open Settings on your Huawei smartphone, search for "HDB" and make sure that the "Allow HiSuite to use HDB" setting is turned on. The full access path in Settings is: "Security & Privacy → More (SIM lock, Device administrators) → Allow HiSuite to use HDB."

Allow HiSuite to use HDB in Android

If the smartphone fails to show up in HiSuite in future connections, disable the HDB setting and enable again. If the HiSuite app is not already installed on your Android smartphone, the Windows app is going to push this process.

HiSuite installation message

After the Android app is installed (it may take a couple of minutes depending on your device and your internet connection), you get a new message on the smartphone. We suggest checking "Always allow HiSuite connection from this computer" to avoid this prompt in the future. Press OK.

Allow connection in HDB mode

We are done with the software installations and we can proceed to use the application.

Use HiSuite to overview, import and export contacts, messages, pictures, videos, and files

The HiSuite app has an area called My Device that allows the transfer of the contacts, messages, pictures, and videos to and from Windows 10 computer and the Android smartphone. The main screen of the Windows app lists the number of entries found on the smartphone from each category in a separate card. Click or tap on one of the cards to open its screen. When you can click or tap My Device, it opens the last area used in the current session of HiSuite.

Access My Device in HiSuite

HiSuite allows you to view, manage, and transfer information between the Windows computer and the Huawei device for contacts, messages, pictures, videos, and files. Use the navigation area on the left side to switch between each category of information.

When you use My Device in HiSuite to manage transfers between the Windows computer and the Huawei smartphone or tablet, HiSuite shows the following action buttons:

  • Import - get information from the Windows computer and store it on the Huawei device.
  • Export - get information from the Huawei device and store it on the Windows computer.
  • Delete - the selected entries are deleted from the Huawei device.
  • Refresh - updates the list of entries in HiSuite with the latest information from the Huawei device.
  • New - available only for Messages, it allows you to create and send a new SMS message from HiSuite in Windows.
Messages screen in HiSuite

Please note that although HiSuite lists all the contacts from your Huawei smartphone, it can manage only the contacts stored on your SIM card, and in the smartphone's internal storage. It cannot manage the contacts stored in your Google account or social media apps. Such contacts are neither visible nor managed in HiSuite.

In the navigation area, you can open a File Manager that allows the transfer and management of files on the smartphone. In the File Manager, you get additional buttons for Copy, Paste, and New folder, which work the same as in the File Explorer in Windows.

Use HiSuite to uninstall apps from your Huawei smartphone

The list of apps installed on the smartphone is also visible in HiSuite. The only operation you can do in the HiSuite app is to uninstall them (you get buttons only for Uninstall and Refresh). The advantage of using HiSuite is that you can uninstall a large number of apps with a single action. If you want to clean up the app drawer on your Huawei device, HiSuite allows you to review and uninstall apps from the comfort of your Windows screen.

The apps on your Huawei smartphone or tablet

Use HiSuite to synchronize your Huawei smartphone with Microsoft Outlook

The last two options in My Device allow the synchronization of Microsoft Outlook with your Huawei smartphone (contacts and calendar). It may be especially useful for corporate settings where Outlook remains the dominant email client.

In the navigation area on the left side of the screen, you have an Outlook group with two possible selections underneath: Sync Contacts and Sync Calendar. On the right side of the screen, you can see the number of entries (contacts or calendar appointments) present on the Huawei device and in Outlook. Underneath, you have a Sync button that synchronizes Contacts or Calendar, depending on what you selected in the left navigation bar.

Sync Contacts and Calendar with Outlook

Use HiSuite to mirror the screen and take screenshots of the Huawei smartphone on your Windows computer

On the bottom of the Huawei device image, found in the Home tab of HiSuite, you find four action buttons for Demonstrate, Refresh, Screenshot, and Open.

Screen image buttons in HiSuite

When you press Demonstrate, the image of your Huawei devices goes full screen in Windows. You can display, change orientation, freeze or take screenshots while the session is running. The Refresh button freshens up the screen image. It is done automatically by HiSuite, but it can lag a few seconds. The Screenshot button has a small arrow to the right that allows the option of taking screenshots of the Huawei device in the clipboard or in files stored in the Windows computer. The Open button opens the folder on the Windows computer where the screenshots are stored.

Use HiSuite to back up, restore, update or recover the Huawei smartphone

The bottom area of the main screen in HiSuite houses four more action buttons: Back Up, Restore, Update, and System Recovery.

Back Up, Restore, Update, and System Recovery in HiSuite

The Back Up and Restore work on the following data from the Huawei device: Contacts, Messages, Call log, Notes, Recordings, Calendar, Pictures, Music, Videos, Documents, Apps and Data, and System Settings. In the case of Contacts, Pictures, Music, Apps and Data, and System settings, you can refine your selection to individual items. For security purposes, you can encrypt your backups and secure them with a password. The backup and restore are done using a folder on your Windows computer.

The Update button checks for the latest firmware available for your Huawei device using the internet connection of your Windows computer. If a newer version is available, you can download and install it using HiSuite.

The System recovery is a crisis intervention action on your Huawei device. If you cannot turn the device on, you can connect it to your Windows computer, and attempt to revive it using this feature of HiSuite.

What data do you want to transfer between your Huawei smartphone and your Windows computer?

You have seen the installation procedure for HiSuite and the activities that you can perform with it. What do you want to backup or synchronize with HiSuite? Comment below and share how you used this app, and whether it worked well.