Huawei at CES 2013
Huawei launched some impressive high-end devices during 2012, and to kick off 2013 they have announced some more interesting handsets during CES in Las Vegas.
The biggest launch - literally - is the Huawei Ascend Mate, a quad-core Android smartphone with a massive 6.1" display, which is almost as big as some tablets.
The display is a 1280 x 720 pixel panel with a Gorilla Glass coating. Although this is obviously a big thing to use, Huawei have adapted the interface to make one-handed operation easier, for example the virtual keyboard can be offset to use only the left or right-hand part of the screen rather than the whole lot. The screen can also be used by people wearing gloves.
Inside is a 1.5GHz quad-core CPU with 2GB of RAM, on the back is an 8 megapixel camera with a 1 megapixel unit on the front. There's a beefy 4050 mAh battery, and the whole thing measures a whopping 164 x 86 x 9.9mm and weighs 198 grams.
All the usual features are here, although there appears to be no 4G support. At the moment Huawei have only confirmed a product release in China during February, availability (or price) in other markets is not known.
Huawei's first Windows Phone 8 device is called the Huawei Ascend W1. It features a dual-core 1.2GHz processor with 512MB of RAM, plus a 4" 480 x 800 pixel display, a 5 megapixel primary camera and 0.3 megapixel video-calling one.
Inside is 4GB of flash memory expandable with a microSD slot and a fairly large 1950 mAh battery, quoted as giving an impressive 10.5 hours of talktime and 19 days standby.
The key selling point with the Huawei Ascend W1 is likely to be the price, presumably aiming to be better value than the Lumia 620, Nokia's cheapest offering. Huawei say that the Ascend W1 should be available in Russia and China from Q1, with other markets including Western Europe and North America to follow.
Another high-end Android phone is the Huawei Ascend D2, featuring a 5" full HD 1920 x 1080 pixel display (although confusingly there will be an alternate version of the D2 available with a 4.7" screen) and a quad-core 1.5GHz processor with 2GB of RAM.
On the back of the D2 is an impressive 13 megapixel snapper, plus a 1.3 megapixel one on the front. There is 32GB of flash memory internally plus a microSD slot. The D2 runs Android 4.1 and comes with all the usual Android features.
Inside is a pretty big 3000 mAh battery, and the Ascend D2 is also water and dust resistant, and the whole package weighs 170 grams.
Huawei say that the Ascend D2 will be available in China during January 2013, and will then be released later in Japan. There's no word of a release outside of those two countries, but we would very much like to see this particular handset in Europe if possible.
Huawei have provided promo videos of the Ascend W1, Ascend D2 and Ascend Mate.