Sources say Huawei will unveil HongMeng as its new mobile operating system at the Huawei Developer Conference this week, but that isn't all. A new report says that Huawei will also unveil (again) the Mate X foldable smartphone at the same developer conference.
The new foldable smartphone will be announced this week but won't officially become available for purchase until September. Even when it does land, due to the complex nature of building such a device, the Mate X will be solid in limited quantity although there's no word on the exact amount Huawei will have ready for purchase.
The Huawei Mate X is Huawei's first foldable smartphone. It features a "Falcon Wing Design" where it folds completely flat, unlike the Galaxy Fold, and has a gapless design. The Mate X folds outward, with no notches. In contrast, Samsung's Galaxy Fold does have a large corner notch.
The 8-inch screen unfolds to provide 6.6-inch and 6.38-inch screens on both sides, a dual-display experience. Huawei's own 7-nanometer Kirin 980 SoC is onboard, along with 8GB of RAM, 512GB of storage, and two SIM card slots. Only one SIM card slot allows for 5G connectivity.
There are three Leica cameras that double as both rear and selfie cameras on the device: an 8MP telephoto lens, 16MP Ultra Wide Angle Lens, and 40MP Wide Angle Lens. The uniqueness of Huawei's camera system on the Mate X is that Huawei implemented the Mate X cameras to have double utility despite the absence of a rotating camera mechanism.
There is a 4,500 mAh capacity battery in the device, though two batteries contribute to it, with Huawei's 55W SuperCharge technology for fast wired charging. Running on the Mate X is Google's Android 9 Pie with Huawei's own EMUI Android "skin" that brings Huawei's own unique features not found in Google's Android.
The device will launch next month, a curious time indeed when, by then, Huawei could have had its Android license revoked resulting in the OEM unable to partner with the likes of Google. The company can release Android 9 Pie seeing as it has placed this software in a number of devices, but will the Mate X be an upgrade-worthy phone in a year's time?
Huawei announced its Mate X foldable smartphone at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2019 earlier this year. After Huawei did a slight redesign of the phone, and a day after Samsung announced it would re-introduce the Galaxy Fold to the world market, Huawei Consumer Business Group CEO Richard Yu was spotted using the revised Mate X foldable smartphone bearing the slight redesign.
The Galaxy Fold was the first to launch but had its share of problems. Within 48 hours of reviewers receiving their units, reviewers began reporting that there were all sorts of failures with the device. Dust and dirt particles were getting into the hinge, while some units were flickering on and off (to never turn on again), and so on. At that point, Samsung investigated the complaints before finally recalling the phone just a few days before its expected arrival in stores.
AT&T and Best Buy in the U.S. canceled sales of the Galaxy Fold, with AT&T giving away $100 promo cards to those who pre-ordered the flawed phone but then had to accept its cancellation.
Foldable smartphones are the next wave in mobile phone design, providing the perfect combination of tablet and phone screen for whatever the task may be. For a long time on the market, Android OEMs have sold both phones and tablets to consumers. With many consumers using smartphones to make calls, send texts, browse the internet, and so on, over time consumers have found less need for a tablet.
If foldable smartphones are here to stay, then the market has reached a place where consumers can get an all-in-one portable device that does everything they need it to.