GUANGZHOU, China – Honor, the Chinese smartphone brand formerly owned by Huawei, has launched its first device since it was sold.
Huawei sold Honor, its budget smartphone brand, in November to a consortium of buyers in China as a way to help the unit survive amid US sanctions.
In 2019, Huawei was included in a blacklist for exports to the United States, called the Entity List, which restricted US companies from selling certain components to the Chinese technology giant. This included both semiconductors and software.
Google has been forced to cut ties with Huawei, which means that the US search giant̵
Last year, Huawei sold Honor to Shenzhen Zhixin New Information Technology, a consortium of 30 agents and dealers. At the time, Huawei said the sale was made so that Honor could “survive this difficult time.”
“Dividing Honor’s team should help it get the components it needs, although it can still take months and is never guaranteed, especially given the geopolitical tensions in the air,” said Brian Ma, vice president of research. of devices in IDC.
“Nevertheless, this move helps maintain the team’s commitment to suppliers in the hope that it can continue to develop its products.”
Most of Honor’s sales come from China. In 2019, Honor shipped 64 million smartphones worldwide, according to IDC. In the first nine months of 2020, the company delivered 42 million units. There is still no complete data for 2020.
Honor’s new smartphone is called the V40. It boasts a 6.72-inch display and is available in three colors: silver, black and rose gold.
Honor talked about the graphic processing of the phone and the capabilities of the touch screen, features that improve the games of the device, the popular use of smartphones in China.
It has the ability to connect to next-generation 5G mobile networks, which is a key requirement in China, which is the world’s largest market for 5G phones.
The V40 uses a key 5G chip from Taiwan’s MediaTek, a company that became China’s largest semiconductor supplier for smartphones in 2020.
Honor’s V40 starts at 3,599 yuan ($ 556) for the 128 GB storage option and 3,999 yuan for the 256 GB version. It will be released in China, but it is unclear whether it will be launched internationally.
“The message (Honor) they want to convey is that they have inherited a lot from Huawei, whether it’s chipset capabilities, photography and R&D (all R&D) all the things they’ve got from Huawei, they have it all, ”Nicole Penn, a mobile analyst at Canalys, said.
“They don’t want to show that they lack the R&D capability that Huawei has. They want to show that they still have it and have a great R&D team, and that’s something that people asked when they were divided whether they could sustain this kind of innovation. ”