Huawei showcases gold smartwatch, smart car but doesn’t discuss Mate 60 smartphone

Beijing/Shanghai: Huawei Technologies on Monday showcased a range of new products from gold smartwatches to smart cars, but disappointed audiences by not giving much details about its new Mate 60 smartphone series, leading to a flood of complaints online.

The event, held at a stadium and watched online by millions, was expected to see Huawei break its silence on smartphones, which Chinese state media has hailed as a sign that the company has overcome US sanctions that hit it in 2019. Its reach has since been curtailed. advanced chip manufacturing equipment and crippled its smartphone unit.

The smartphone was launched without much fanfare during US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo’s visit to China last month. Some users and analysts who have purchased the Mate 60 Pro say that it uses a Chinese-made chip and is capable of delivering 5G speeds.

Huawei has not yet commented on the full capabilities of the Mate 60 series, which is considered its first major attempt after the sanctions to challenge Apple’s dominance in the smartphone market.

However, Huawei’s consumer business group CEO Yu Chengdong agreed to the smartphone in his opening remarks, when he extended “special thanks to the entire country for their tremendous support, especially since the launch of the (Mate 60 Pro) Pioneer Program.” I went” .

As Yu spoke, audience members chanted “far, far ahead” – a phrase that has gone viral on Chinese social media since the launch of the Mate 60 Pro as a look at Huawei’s competitiveness.

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Yu said, “After coming on the market, our products have been well received and trusted by everyone. We are urgently working overtime to manufacture more so that more people can buy our products.”

‘Why didn’t he talk about it?’

But as the two-hour event progressed, commentators on the livestream began asking when Yu would talk about the Mate 60 as they introduced new features ranging from a tablet product to an ultra, high-end brand called ‘Ultimate Design’. A range of products were presented.

By Monday afternoon, after the event ended, the topic “Smartphones not mentioned in Huawei’s press conference” started trending on the Weibo social media platform and was among the top ten most read hashtags with more than 8 million views. there was one.

“Why didn’t they talk about it? Everyone saw it because of smartphones,” said Manilar, a Weibo user.

The event concluded with a group of people on stage waving Mate 60 smartphones with flashlights while singing “Glorious Years”, a Cantopop hit by Hong Kong rock band Beyond, with lyrics by Nelson Mandela. Tells about the struggles faced in South Africa.

Another Weibo user said that such an ending, along with the lack of discussion of smartphones, astonished him.

“What kind of trick is this?” He said.

Huawei did not immediately respond to a request for comment on its decision not to discuss the Mate 60 Pro during the event and the social media reaction.

Brian Ma, a technology analyst at consultancy IDC, said he was not surprised Huawei avoided the topic “given the lightning rod.”

He added, “After all, Huawei had plenty of other products to include in the two-hour-long launch, while the Mate60 has already been on store shelves and in user hands for a few weeks.”

Huawei updated its official website after the event to add the prices of its Mate 60 Pro, which will start at 8,999 yuan ($1,230), and the Mate 60 RS Ultimate Design Edition, which will cost 12,999 yuan. Apple’s new iPhone 15 Pro is priced at 7,999 yuan in China.

Anniversary of Meng’s return

The timing of the event was also seen as symbolic, as it occurred on the two-year anniversary of Huawei chairwoman Meng Wanzhou’s return to China.

She returned in 2021 after nearly three years in detention over alleged efforts by Huawei-linked companies to sell equipment to Iran in violation of US sanctions.

The extradition drama became a source of discord between Beijing and Washington. Meng, the daughter of Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei, was allowed to return home after reaching a deal with US prosecutors.

Broadcast live on Huawei stores, 156 local media and Chinese social media platforms, Monday’s product launch event gathered a large audience, with dozens of shoppers at Huawei’s flagship store in Beijing applauding as Yu stepped onto the stage.

A shopper at the Beijing store, 29-year-old engineer Zhang Nianrong, said he saw the Mate 60 Pro as “far more important than its price” and planned to buy it.

“The smartphone represents a very important meaning. It means that even the most malicious restrictions cannot affect the development of human technology. It is very meaningful and it inspires us as the young generation.”

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