Honor intends to introduce its second foldable next year, and in contrast to the Honor Magic V, it expects to do so outside of China. In an interview with TechGru conducted before this year's IFA trade exhibition in Berlin, Honor's CEO, George Zhao, confirmed the intentions and stated that the company anticipates releasing its next foldable handset in the first quarter of 2019.
We've decided to launch our newest foldable smartphone in international regions, including Europe, in Q1 of 2019. said Zhao. The CEO declined to reveal any facts or features about the new gadget. Still, he said that Honor primarily focuses on making its foldables lighter, thinner, and more inexpensive.
A release in the first quarter of 2019 would occur about a year after Honor unveiled the Honor Magic V, its first foldable device. Along with the likes of Oppo's Find N, Xiaomi's Mix Fold, and Huawei's Mate X devices, Honor is among the numerous Chinese smartphone manufacturers that have recently introduced foldables.
But a shockingly significant number of these gadgets are still only available in the Chinese market. Only Samsung and Huawei have made significant foldable device pushes in the west. Of the two, only Samsung's devices may be worth considering; Huawei's devices continue to be marketed without Google's apps and services due to ongoing US sanctions. As a result, Chinese consumers can choose from a far wider variety of foldable gadgets.
When I asked Zhao why Honor and other brands are focusing on China for their foldables, he said that many more popular apps in China are made for foldable devices. That's because China has its Android app market, which is dominated by apps made in China like WeChat. China also has its version of TikTok called Douyin. This makes it easier to work with developers to ensure their apps work well on new devices.
Zhao thinks international markets are catching up because Google has recently taken steps to improve the Android experience on big-screen devices. First, Google released Android 12L, a new version of its mobile operating system that works better on tablets and foldables. It is also working to make its apps work better on more giant screens and says it is working with third-party developers to make apps like TikTok, Zoom, and Facebook easier to use. Zhao says, "Google is putting a lot of work into this."
Honor doesn't plan to sell its foldable phones in the United States. Even though the company tried to break into the US market five years ago, it is now putting most of its limited resources into places like Europe, where it is already present and has more experience.
In the near future, Honor will keep making more and more devices in several different product categories. Today, the company released its latest mid-range smartphone, the Honor 70, and a new tablet and laptop. The 12-inch Honor Pad 8 tablet came out in China earlier this year, and the 14-inch MagicBook 14 laptop is powered by a 12th Gen Intel Core H-series processor and can come with an Nvidia RTX 2050 GPU as an option.
After years of Samsung dominating the international market for foldables, we might finally get some real competition next year. So long as the CEOs of China's other tech companies are just as impressed with what Google is doing to make Android apps work better on tablets and foldables.