Huawei’s Mate X
Benjamin Hall | CNBC
Huawei’s foldable phone could go on sale as soon as next month, according to the head of the Chinese tech company’s consumer business.
Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei’s consumer business group, said the Mate X will “soon be on the market, maybe next month,” in a briefing with reporters at the IFA consumer electronics show in Berlin Friday.
Huawei first unveiled its foldable Mate X smartphone in February and was scheduled to launch in mid-2019. The price of the 5G device, which is intended to double as a tablet and a smartphone, will start at 2,299 euros, or roughly $2,600.
In June, CNBC reported Huawei was delaying the launch of its foldable phone to conduct extra tests after Samsung’s foldable device, the Galaxy Fold, exposed glitches when it was used by reviewers.
Samsung delayed the launch of the $2,000-plus phone after some of the review units broke. On Thursday, it announced it would start selling the phone in South Korea, as well as the U.K., Germany, France and Singapore this month after fixing the glitches. It has not yet specified a U.S. launch date.
Samsung and Huawei are the world’s two biggest smartphone sellers. The companies are looking to release innovative devices, like foldable phones, to reinvigorate stalling smartphone sales. But the lofty price tags of their devices could prove to be a tough sell among consumers.
Meanwhile, Huawei’s Mate 30 smartphone will be unveiled at a September 19 event in Munich amid political pressure from the U.S. Earlier this year, Huawei was put on a U.S. entity list that limits its ability to buy and license technology from American companies.