Technology

Huawei Launches New Foldable Cellphone As US Sanctions Proceed To Have an effect on Smartphone Enterprise

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Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei’s Consumer Business Group, holds the company’s new foldable smartphone Mate X2 in his hand during a virtual launch on February 22, 2021.

Huawei

GUANGZHOU, China – Huawei launched a foldable smartphone on Monday, asking questions about the future of its cellphone business that have been hampered by a number of US sanctions.

The launch of the Huawei Mate X2 underscores Huawei’s continued foray into the high-end smartphone space.

Some of the main features of Mate X2 are:

An exterior and interior screen that appears when the phone is opened. The outside display is 6.45 inches and the inside display is 8 inches. A rear view camera with 4 sensors for zoom and depth. The processor is the Kirin 9000, Huawei’s proprietary chip. It will be one of the first Huawei phones capable of running its own HarmonyOS mobile operating system.

The 256 GB version costs 17,999 yuan ($ 2,785) while the 512 GB model costs 18,999 yuan. It will be available in China from February 25th. Huawei has not said whether it will be available in international markets.

Huawei continues to feel the pressure of the Trump administration’s US sanctions that have damaged the smartphone business, especially outside of China.

The Chinese company shipped 32 million smartphones in the fourth quarter of 2020, a decrease of almost 43% year over year. According to Canalys, this makes it the sixth largest telephone operator by market share. It’s the first time in six years that Huawei has slipped out of the top 5, Canalys said.

Mate X2 production

Last year, the Trump administration restricted Huawei’s access to chip consumables. Huawei is designing its own line of chips called Kirin, made by Taiwan’s TSMC. In May, the US introduced a rule that foreign manufacturers using American chipmaking devices must obtain a license before they can sell semiconductors to Huawei.

Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei’s consumer, cloud and artificial intelligence business, warned Huawei may run out of chips.

However, the Mate X2 uses Huawei’s Kirin 9000 processor, which was launched last year, and Yu said the company has enough production capacity for the foldable phone.

HarmonyOS

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Katherine Clark