Feeds

A first-world problem solved: Panoramic selfies, thanks to Huawei's Ascend P7

What do you think about that, Sams-glum?

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

Pic Huawei took the number-three spot in smartphones last year – pushing aside Sony, HTC and Nokia – but it’s still practically unheard of as a smartphone brand in the UK. But that may change quite rapidly with the launch of its latest flagship model, the Ascend P7, unveiled today in Paris.

Photograph of the P7

Yup, it's a phone ... the Ascend P7

The P7 manages to squeeze a dual-antenna LTE Cat4 radio into a very well-designed, 6.5mm-thick, five-inch full-HD phone weighing just 123g. (You read that correctly.) This 4G capability allows it to download from the mobe network at speeds up to 150Mbps.

The handset runs Android 4.4.2 (aka KitKat) on a quad-core 1.8GHz ARM Cortex-A9-compatible processor with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage. And with a before-taxes-and-subsidies price of €449, it undercuts rivals substantially.

At last, China has a premium smartphone contender you don’t have to be embarrassed to carry around. We did warn you this was going to happen.

"China" and "design" don’t really trip off the tongue, but these preconceptions may need to be adjusted. Last year’s Huawei flagship, the Ascend P6, was smartly designed, but not exactly pulling up trees. While it was likely to satisfy £20/£25 contract punter, it couldn’t compete in the big leagues with market leaders like the iPhone and Samsung’s Galaxy S4.

The P7, however, is extravagantly well-crafted and boasts a slimmer profile – it's 6.5mm thick – with a narrower bezel than the heavyweight rivals. Huawei says over 72 per cent of the front bezel is now display – a larger percentage than that of the Galaxy S5 or iPhone 5S.

The boffinry of a new generation of Chinese R&D graduates is being well directed. The 4G handset uses Huawei’s own HiSilicon CPU with a Mali-450MP4 graphics processor – but leans on Sony for the primary camera module, and Altek for a customised discrete ISP that reduces noise and generally improves results in very low light conditions.

It’s slimmer than other LTE models on the market today, which Huawei says is down to a 4mm antenna. The f/2.0 primary camera is complemented by an 8MP five-piece lens front camera – all the better to take your selfie. It can also stitch together several photos for a "panoramic selfie". This is how pressing First World Problems are solved.

One nice touch is that there’s a dual SIM version – and when you’re not using the second SIM slot, it’ll take a MicroSD card to boost capacity by up to 64GB. More likely to be used is the low power mode, squeezing one full day of standby, calls and texts from the final 10 per cent of a power cycle. The 2500mAh battery should last into a second day.

Now we’ve got our hands on one, we should be able to put this to the test. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
Apple takes blade to 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display
Shaves price, not screen on mid-2014 model
iPhone 6 flip tip slips in Aussie's clip: Apple's 'reversible USB' leaks
New plug not compatible with official Type-C, according to fresh rumors
FEAST YOUR EYES: Samsung's Galaxy Alpha has an 'entirely new appearance'
Wow, it looks like nothing else on the market, for sure
The agony and ecstasy of SteamOS: WHERE ARE MY GAMES?
And yes it does need a fat HDD (or SSD, it's cool with either)
YES YES YES! Apple patents mousy, pressure-sensing iVibrator
Fanbois prepare to experience the great Cupertin-O
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
TV transport tech, part 1: From server to sofa at the touch of a button
You won't believe how much goes into today's telly tech
Apple analyst: fruity firm set to shift 75 million iPhones
We'll have some of whatever he's having please
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.