Chinese networking giant Huawei has signalled its intent in the provision of cloud services, with the unveiling of the Huawei Vision smartphone.
Of late Huawei has been expanding out of its traditional carrier equipment niche and into new areas including mobile handsets and tablets. Indeed, Huawei sold 7 million phones in the first quarter of 2011, and in June it unveiled its entry to the tablet race with a 7-inch MediaPad running Android 3.2 (Honeycomb).
And now the Huawei Vision smartphone joins its mobile portfolio, running Android 2.3 (Gingerbread). However this handset is more noteworthy than other handset announcements for two reasons.
The first is to do with the fact the Vision handset comes complete with a 3D user interface (on a 2D screen). The second is that it will be closely integrated with Huawei’s cloud services platform.
Inside the device, it features a 3.7 inch touchscreen, and is powered by a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM 8255 processor. The phone also sports a microUSB 2.0 port, 512MB of RAM, and 2GB of ROM, and has support for a 32GB memory card.
The handset also reportedly supports 720p video recording and has a five-megapixel auto-focus camera with LED flash, as well as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n internet connectivity. Of course it also offers the usual messaging capabilities including SMS, MMS, email, push email and IM.
The Vision will launch in three colour options, namely silver, rose gold, and charcoal.
Huawei actually revealed this phone at a launch ceremony earlier this week in Beijing, which was covered by China.org.cn. According to that publication, the Vision handset will be closely integrated with Huawei’s cloud services.
Reportedly Huawei is reserving an impressive 160 gigabytes (GB) of storage for every Huawei cloud phone user. The idea with this cloud concept is that it can automatically push applications, music, photos and documents over-the-air to the person’s handset using conventional mobile networks.
However, given the state of current 3G networks in most developed nations, which are struggling to cope with the recordq amount of data being transferred, it is likely this concept will only start to make more sense when 4G networks (such as LTE or WiMax) are rolled out.
That said, Apple is attempting something similar with its iCloud.com beta website, which it plans to officially launch (in the US) in September. In the UK, this service is only expected to arrive in 2012 however.
Other Chinese vendors are also doing the same. For example last week Alibaba (China’s largest e-commerce company) launched its own cloud-based mobile operating system.
Meanwhile precise details about the Vision handset remain sketchy. It will reportedly hit the Chinese market sometime in September, although there is no word on any UK arrival or indeed any pricing.
Huawei was also in the news earlier this week when it emerged that it had hired the former chief information officer (CIO) for the British government, John Suffolk, as its cyber-security boss.
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