Huawei Executive Says Sub-$150 5G Smartphones Will Be a Reality by Q4 2020
While it may be a long time before we see 5G become as common as 4G LTE, companies are already gearing up for that moment. 5G, for all practical purposes, is still in its infancy and available only in a handful of regions. Not only is it beyond the reach of most users geographically, but 5G-ready smartphones are also incredibly expensive. Affordable 5G handsets may not be the need of the hours now but will be in a couple of years if the technology has to fourish. Yang Chaobin, president of Huawei's 5G division says that sub-$150 5G-ready smartphones should make their way to the market before 2020 ends.
Huawei along with other Chinese OEMs such as Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo, and the likes have spent the better half of this decade churning out affordable smartphones in regions where an average consumer's spending capacity is in the $100-$200 range. The Indian market, in particular, is a shining example of what low-cost smartphones combined with widespread 4G availability can achieve.
Sub-$150 5G smartphones may be easier to make than we think
All you really need to make a smartphone 5G-ready is a compatible SoC. High-end flagship chips such as the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 and 865 are out of the question, so companies have to look elsewhere for solutions. Things are much easier for Huawei, as they make all their silicon in-house. The company can always slap a 5G modem on top of a new or existing Kirin chip and call it a day. Here's where MediaTek can finally redeem itself.
While MediaTek's Dimensity 1000 series SoC are reserved for flagships, the Dimensity 800 series chips are ideal for low-cost and mid-range smartphones that require 5G connectivity. We should also see Qualcomm make some affordable solutions such as the Snapdragon 765 in the coming year.
This could also serve as an excellent opportunity for Huawei to soak test its in-house Harmony OS. Getting users to make the switch to an entirely new platform is rather difficult. Huawei can always sell 5G-ready Harmony OS-powered devices for a pittance, to get new users onboard.
News Source: Android Headlines
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