The Huawei_Mate Xs 2.
Chinese smartphone giant Huawei is set to unveil a new foldable smartphone in the South African market soon, ITWeb has learned.
In an exclusive interview with ITWeb on Friday, Akhram Mohamed, vice president of operations at Huawei Consumer Business Group South Africa, said the company will be rolling out a foldable smartphone to the local market in “a few days”.
The reveal comes after Huawei’s rival Samsung last week announced the availability of its latest foldable smartphones – the Galaxy Z Flip4 and Galaxy Z Fold4 devices.
As the race for foldable smartphones heats up, Xiaomi also launched its Mix Fold 2 device last week.
Huawei’s first foldable smartphone to launch in South Africa is the P50 Pocket, which was announced in March.
“In South Africa, we launched the first foldable phone – the P50 Pocket, which was the flip version. It was amazing from a fashion point of view, but also to show our capability in the foldable space,” said said Mohamed in a video interview.
August is a busy month for the Chinese brand when it comes to product launches. Its wearables launch will take place right after the company introduced its latest smartphones and laptops on August 18. Huawei will unveil its latest smartwatches on August 25.
ITWeb expects the foldable phone to launch on August 25.
“We really believe that the foldable form factor will be the next avenue of innovation in the industry as a whole, especially as prices come down over time and it becomes easier and cheaper to manufacture these devices. “Mohammed said. .
“I know one of our competitors [Samsung] just released two foldable phones a few days ago and we will also be introducing something to South African consumers in the coming days.
Akhram Mohamed, Vice President of Operations at Huawei Consumer Business Group South Africa.
Without revealing much, he added: “In a few days we are going to announce something to the South African market and it is going to be amazing.
Asked about the latest foldable devices offered by Huawei, Mohamed pointed to the Mate Xs 2 smartphone, which was unboxed globally on April 22.
“It’s a real foldable device that opens up into a tablet. But other than it just pops open into a tablet – because a foldable is all about, to get a bigger screen for media consumption – it shouldn’t be compromised when the phone is closed.
“You still need the full smartphone experience and that’s the logic we follow; that it needs to be compact while having a large screen area, and you can use it like a traditional smartphone while having all the features. However, the software is optimized when you open it on a tablet and you can become more productive. But it must be light, it must be thin and it must be compact. All applications must also be optimized depending on form factor and folding experience.
“So that’s something we’re putting a lot of emphasis on and not just launching a foldable in the market, but rather making it something really functional,” Mohamed said.
On pricing, he said, “It will be on par with other foldables that are on the market. Pricing will be announced at launch.
Pre-orders for the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip4 and Galaxy Z Fold4 devices in South Africa started last week, with the devices selling for R21,999 and R37,999 respectively.
According to Counterpoint Research’s latest foldable smartphone forecast released last week, the global foldable smartphone market will grow 73% this year, from nine million units last year to 16 million units.
He notes that the strong growth is defying the current economic headwinds as the high-end market shows resilience and stable demand.
Counterpoint also predicts strong growth over the next year, with foldables expected to reach 26 million units in 2023.
The market research firm says that in the first half of 2022, Samsung had a dominant foldable market share, accounting for 62% of the market in June. He adds that Huawei (16%) and Oppo (3%) came in far behind and third. Other smartphone manufacturers have an 18% market share.