Huawei Technologies Co. has released the P9, its latest smartphone, in an attempt to break into the high-end device market long dominated by Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co.
The Chinese tech giant made it clear that the product was designed to directly challenge Apple and Samsung, The Wall Street Journal reported.
As Huawei executive Richard Yu spoke at the event in London Wednesday, the screen behind him showed how the P9 compared favorably with Apple’s iPhone 6s and Samsung’s Galaxy S7 on several specifications.
“We are slimmer than an iPhone 6s and slimmer than S7,” Yu said.
The P9 has a 5.2-inch screen, which is bigger than the 4.7-inch screen of the iPhone 6s, and a novel dual-lens camera developed in partnership with high-end German camera producer Leica Camera AG.
However, Huawei priced the P9 below the flagship smartphones of its key rivals.
The basic model of the P9 has 32 gigabytes of storage and costs 599 euros (US$683). In Britain, Apple sells its cheapest iPhone 6s, with 16 GB, for US$759, and Samsung sells its simplest version of the S7, with 32 GB, for US$801.
The phone will be available beginning April 16 in at least 29 countries, including China, several European markets and the Middle East. The company will also sell a version of the P9 with a bigger screen, called the P9 Plus.
Huawei is the world’s third-biggest smartphone maker.
Its 8.1 percent share of the global smartphone market in the fourth quarter trailed Samsung’s 21 percent and Apple’s 19 percent, research firm IDC’s figures show.
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