While the entirety of Huawei's presentation at Mobile World Congress was devoted to their intriguing new wearables, today is also the public debut of their new tablet/phablet, the MediaPad X2. The 7" device has an attractive metal construction, full HD screen, and all the connectivity you'd expect out of a high-end phone.
As it appears, that is indeed an aluminum unibody that looks similar to a speakerless HTC One. At just 7.18mm, it is also incredibly thin for how large it is.
If you measure the success of a product release by the element of surprise, Huawei might not score too well. We found official product videos for the new Huawei Watch yesterday, ahead of today's announcement. Huawei's TalkBand devices showed up in ads days ago and in their own wearables app yesterday.
Huawei can't seem to keep its MWC goodies under wraps. Its gorgeous Huawei Watch leaked earlier thanks to two lengthy product videos, showing a Moto 360-like round watch with small steel bezels and an elegant design. But that won't be the only wearable the company is working on (and presumably announcing at MWC in a few hours). After showing up prematurely in a few public ads, the TalkBand B2 has made an appearance in none other than Huawei's own Wear application.
Watch the video below. Watch it several times if you need to. Try to figure out what it's trying to promote. A remote and exclusive European ski resort? An auction house for classic Mercedes cars? Champagne intended only for use in questionably phallic gestures? Nope, it's Huawei's Watch. That's not a typo, it's actually called the Huawei Watch. Let's... um, watch.
The design of the Android Wear device looks more or less like the Moto 360, with its metal housing and thin bezels but without its signature "flat tire" screen cutout.
If you're into huge phones and low costs, the Huawei Ascend Mate 2 might be the phone for you. While it's not the most powerful device on the planet, this 6.1-inch beasty is packing some pretty reasonable hardware under its hood for just $299:
You might not know it to look at retail stores in the US or Europe, but Huawei has quickly become one of the world's largest phone manufacturers, even while it keeps most of its high-end hardware restricted to China. The company is showing off its engineering and manufacturing chops with the Honor 6 Plus, a new 5.5-inch phone slated to hit the market on December 23rd. It, uh, might look a little familiar.
Huawei took a lot of heat when it told North American customers a few weeks ago that the Ascend Mate2 would not be getting the promised KitKat update. The original post was removed after the comments got ugly, and now Huawei is backtracking. After "reassessing" the decision to cancel KitKat on the Mate2, Huawei will go all the way to Lollipop, but not until some time in the first half of 2015.
Buyers of the Huawei Ascend Mate2 in the US are fuming today over news that there won't be a KitKat update for this device. It's not unusual for older devices to be left in the dust, but the Mate2 was announced in early 2014 and only went on sale for US consumers in June of this year. Huawei has shown some interest in breaking into the US market as of late, but the Chinese OEM is going to have trouble if this is the kind of support we can expect.
I've been writing about Android phones for over three years, and I'm going to be honest: I still think I'm pronouncing "Huawei" wrong. (Wah-way. WAA-whey. Hoo-waa-way.) Huawei is perfectly aware that their branding outside of Asia isn't exactly stellar, and it looks like they're taking steps to improve it. Say hello to "Honor," a new Huawei sub-brand introduced to Europe this week. The first phone launched under the label will be the Honor 6.
I know there are more than a few American readers who took a chance on this post, clicking on the headline even though they know the presence of Huawei's name likely means that everything they're about to read won't apply to them. The Ascend Mate 2 is one device that runs counter to this expectation. Huawei sells the phone directly to consumers online, including folks who live in the US.