Just a few weeks ago, we learned that Huawei is ready to challenge Samsung in the race to launch the world’s first foldable smartphone. Samsung has been teasing its foldable Galaxy F for years, while reports continued to detail its design and features but kept pushing back its launch since development was tricky. More recently, Samsung said that some of the technology behind the foldable phone may be unveiled as soon as November.
Samsung likely doesn’t want to be outdone by the Chinese smartphone maker, which is already threatening its smartphone market dominance. But while Huawei’s device hasn’t been featured in leaks as much as Samsung’s, Huawei CEO Richard Yu recently teased the phone in a wide-ranging interview with German news site Die Welt.
“Why are you still using a computer?” Yu asked while answering a question about future mobile innovations. “Probably because the smartphone display is too small for you. We will change that. It is conceivable that a display can be folded out.”
The exec also said that Huawei is working on the phone already, and that you won’t have to wait another year to see it. He did not reveal actual launch details for the phone. But his interview did reveal other features that we’ll probably see on the foldable handset, as well as plenty of other Huawei devices in the year to come, including 5G and better AI features.
In Yu’s opinion, “the smartphone comes after the smartphone,” suggesting we won’t see a replacement soon. “It is playing an increasingly important role in the lives of users,” he said. “There is no device that is more personal. It will be the key, whether at work, in private life, when paying or entertainment. And with Artificial Intelligence it gets even smarter.”
According to Yu, AI will bring over additional features beyond the camera and images. Yu says that AI will help with AR creation as well as real-time language translation. That’s thanks to powerful new chips that include support for AI features — as a reminder, Huawei just unveiled the Kirin 980 platform.
5G will also play a role in the evolution of the smartphone, Yu said. “We’re going to see more of an evolution than a revolution when it comes to the devices. The user will definitely have more fun. We had just talked about real-time translations. They will also be possible because conversations can be sent to the cloud and back at lightning speed with very short response times.”
Huawei will unveil the Mate 20 Pro on October 16th, which would be the perfect time to provide more details about its foldable phone plans, if Huawei wants to beat Samsung’s upcoming announcement.