Huawei foldable phone almost ready to launch

July 14, 2019

Huawei’s ground-breaking Mate X foldable phone is set to launch within the next few months despite a recent ban on the company’s products in the US.

Tech Radar revealed they had recently sat down with Huawei executive Victor Pang, who noted the 5G phone would indeed hit the market this year, with September the latest likely date.

Meanwhile, contrary to popular belief, it’s not US politics affecting its launch date but rather the rollout of 5G.

So, what is the Huawei Mate X?

Huawei Mate X

Huawei Mate X

Four days after Samsung’s big reveal of a foldable phone on February 20, Huawei launched their own version in the form of the Huawei Mate X, and they took a very different approach to design.

While Samsung opted for a cover display that opens to reveal the further tablet-sized screen inside, Huawei designed the foldable screen to be the cover. They also elected to have an asymmetrical body that features a bar as a handhold which is positioned on the back. This area includes an unlocking button and a camera.

When folded this means there is a 6.6-inch screen on the front and a 6.3-inch screen on the back. When fully unfolded, the total screen is 8 inches. Like the Samsung, the Huawei Mate X has a battery split into two parts that together offer 4500mAh.

Inside there is a Kirin 980 processor, 8Mb RAM, and 512Gb storage, while the device is also expected to run Android 9 Pie.

Charging has been a big talking point of the Mate X, with fast charging allowing the device to have 80 per cent battery capacity after just half an hour on the charger.

The US ban

As CNET explains, Huawei is currently the world’s Number 1 telecommunications supplier and the Number 2 phone manufacturer.

Yet on May 15 this year, US President Donald Trump issued a National Security Order that effectively banned Huawei products in America.

The move against Huawei came amid concerns about the company’s close relationship with the Chinese government and fears that its equipment could be used to spy on other countries and companies.

“Over the last few months, there’s been an upswing in scrutiny of Huawei, with a number of countries banning the use of its networking equipment,” CNET notes.

“That’s why its phones are virtually invisible in the US despite its massive presence around the world.

“Huawei, for its part, has long denied any wrongdoing and continues to maintain its innocence through the recent charges.”

Just days after the product ban, Google cut off Huawei phones from its future Android updates, and on June 18 the Chinese tech giant predicted a $30B revenue loss as a result of the ban in the US market.

But that hasn’t deterred them from pushing out their foldable phone. Now they’re waiting on the implementation of the 5G telecommunications network in other key markets prior to launch.

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The 5G wait

Huawei has actively marketed the Mate X as a 5G phone, unlike Samsung’s foldable number which is set to roll out with 4G.

But at present the 5G infrastructure is still being established globally.

Tech Radar notes: “Huawei is waiting for 5G to cement itself in China and other important areas. 5G just went live in the UK, which has always been a key territory for Huawei smartphones.”

Now, the Huawei Mate X is due for release by the end of September and comes with a starting price of US$2300.

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