Gadgets

Huawei unveils two tablets, a smartphone, a smartband, and more

Above: Huawei revealed a bevy of gadgets at the 2014 Mobile World Congress.

Image Credit: Huawei

Huawei isn’t pulling any punches with its hefty lineup of 4G LTE gadgets at the Mobile World Congress tradeshow in Barcelona.

Altogether, the Chinese device maker revealed five devices on Sunday: two small tablets, the MediaPad X1 and M1; the Ascend G6 smartphone; a smartband fitness tracker that doubles as an earpiece, the TalkBand B1; and a speedy mobile Wi-Fi device, the Huawei E5786. Here’s the lowdown on each one.

The tablets

Huawei is late to the tablet market, but it’s hoping to make a splash with its two new offerings: the 8-inch MediaPad M1 and the 7-inch MediaPad X1.

Huawei's MediaPad X1

Above: Huawei’s MediaPad X1

The X1, the more expensive of the two gadgets, could be viewed as a “phablet” rather than a tablet. The Android tablet includes a SIM card slot that enables calling and texting in addition to 4G LTE data connectivity, so device consolidators could theoretically use it as a smartphone.

The X1 sports a 1,280 x 920 pixel display, a crisp 323 pixels per inch. Inside, it includes a 1.6 GHz quad-core processor and 16 GB of built-in memory, with a microSD card slot for additional storage. Huawei estimates its 5,000 mAh battery will power the device for more than three days during “normal use,” or for roughly 500 hours on standby. It also offers two impressive cameras: a 13-megapixel camera on the rear, and a wide-angle 5-megapixel camera on the front.

The larger, less-expensive M1 features the same quad-core processor and 4G capabilities, but the battery, cameras, and resolution are lower-spec. The battery is a bit less powerful (4,800 mAh), the screen is a slightly lower resolution (1,280 x 800 pixels), and the cameras are a significant step down (5-megapixel rear-facing, 1-megapixel front-facing).

The M1 is scheduled to release this May in 8 GB and 16 GB models — and again, you can slip in a 32 GB microSD card to boost that storage — while the X1 will arrive in the latter half of 2014. The M1 is priced at 299 euros (about $411), while the X1 will cost 399 euros (about $548).

The smartphone

Huawei, which shipped nearly 50 million smartphones last year, today unveiled its Ascend G6 Android phone.

The 4.5-inch device has a 960 x 540 pixel display, a 1.2 GHz quad-core processor, and a 2000 mAh battery. It also has an 8-megapixel camera on the back and a (selfie-friendly) 5-megapixel camera on the front. Its 8 GB of built-in storage can be expanded with a microSD card.

The Ascend G6 comes in a range of colors.

Above: The Ascend G6 comes in a range of colors.

The Ascend G6 looks fairly similar to last year’s Ascend P6, though its not as crazily narrow (it’s 7.9 millimeters thick compared to the P6′s 6.2mm) and the brushed metal back panel has been replaced with a rubberized plastic back. Huawei will likely compensate for these design changes with a cheaper price point, though it has yet to announce official pricing details. It’ll go on sale in April, according to Huawei.

The smartband

Huawei’s TalkBand B1 is the most curious device the gadget maker revealed in Barcelona.

TalkBand B1The ‘Band’ part is pretty obvious: You wear it around your wrist and it tracks steps taken, calories burned, and distance traveled. It also functions as a sleeping pattern monitor with a smart alarm clock function that wakes you up during a period of light sleep.

But the ‘Talk’ part is a little more surprising: The band’s 1.4-inch flexible OLED display doubles as a removable earpiece that turns the wearable into a wireless calling accessory. It can pair with phones over NFC.

Huawei says the TalkBand’s 90 mAh battery will last for six days of regular usage. The gadget maker plans to release the TalkBand in China next month. Folks in Japan, Russia, Western Europe, and the Middle East will have to wait until the second quarter to strap it around their wrists. It’ll cost 99 euros, or about $136.

The Mi-Fi device

Lastly, Huawei announced what it’s calling the world’s fastest mobile Wi-Fi (Mi-Fi) device: the Huawei E5786.

The Huawei E5786

Above: The Huawei E5786

The gizmo will support download speeds up to 300 Mbps and upload speeds of up to 100 Mbps. Naturally, you’ll need a blazing fast mobile phone network to reach those maximum performance standards.

The E5786, which uses the latest dual-band Wi-Fi standard (802.11ac), is said to support up to 10 connected devices. It includes a 3,000 mAh battery that should last for around 10 hours of use, according to Huawei. It also offers reverse charging, which means it juice up your smartphone if you’re running out of power on your mobile device.

Huawei’s E5786 is scheduled to launch in the second half of 2014.

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