Huawei’s First 5G Handset Set To Arrive In UK This Month

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Launch of the Mate 20 X (5G) in Europe had been in doubt after Huawei was placed on a US national security blacklist in May

Huawei has confirmed it plans to launch its Mate 20 X 5G in the UK by the end of this month, in spite of uncertainty caused by trade tensions between the US and China.

After the US placed Huawei on a national security blacklist in late May, it had been speculated that Huawei might scrap the launch of the 5G handset in Europe.

At EE’s launch of its first UK 5G services on 30 May the operator said its planned rollout of the Huawei device was on hold.

But Huawei has now confirmed its plans for a broad launch at meetings with the press in the UK and Germany.

First Huawei 5G handset

The Mate 20 X 5G is a follow-up to last year’s Mate 20 X Pro, and is due to be Huawei’s first 5G handset on the market.

It uses largely the same components as the Mate 20 X Pro, including a Kirin 980 processor, 7.2-inch OLED display, triple rear camera and 4,200mAh battery, but adds Huawei’s own Balong 5000 5G modem.

The modem supports both non-standalone (NSA) and faster standalone (SA) 5G networks, as well as older radio standards from 2G to 4G.

Huawei didn’t give a launch date for the UK, but indicated it expects a broad rollout across multiple operators.

Mate 30 5G

Aside from EE, O2, Vodafone and Three had previously announced plans to offer the device on their networks.

The handset is to sell in Germany for 999 euros (£895), according to local reports.  UK prices haven’t yet been disclosed.

The Mate 20 X 5G is set to be joined later this year by the Mate 30, with a Mate 30 5G device planned for launch in December, according to an official roadmap shown at a meeting in Russia and reported by Russian website Hi-Tech.

Huawei’s folding handset, the Mate X, also supports 5G and may arrive in September after an earlier delay, according to the same roadmap.

Vodafone last week joined EE in switching on its 5G network in seven UK cities.

“5G is a game-changer for the economy and UK businesses,” said Anne Sheehan, business director of Vodafone UK. “We are committed to helping our customers take advantage of this technology by making it widely available in the UK and through roaming.”

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