[Update: Live Stream] Huawei will launch the P40 series on March 26th amidst projections of declining smartphone sales
Back in December last year, we first learned that Huawei will be launching its flagship P40 series in March 2020. At the time, the company’s CEO, Richard Yu, also confirmed that the Huawei P40 series will be the first to ship with its new HMS ecosystem. For the unaware, Huawei’s HMS Ecosystem is an alternative to Google Mobile Services which consists of both user-facing apps and background apps. The company first showcased the HMS Ecosystem back in November last year, but since then it hasn’t made an appearance on any device from the company. But that may change soon, as the company has now revealed that it will be launching the Huawei P40 series later this month.
In a recent tweet from its official Twitter handle, the company has confirmed that the Huawei P40 series will be launched during an upcoming online-only event on March 26th. Previously, the company had planned to launch its next-gen flagships at an event in Paris, but the event has been canceled over concerns of the spread of COVID-19. To prepare for the launch event, Huawei recently gave a few media outlets some exclusive hands-on with the upcoming device. Digital Trends got their hands on a prototype version of the Huawei P40, showcasing its design, camera setup, and a few key specifications. While Android Authority, on the other hand, spent some time with the final launch unit, albeit the device was enclosed in a box.
— Huawei Mobile (@HuaweiMobile) March 10, 2020
While we know a few key details about the upcoming devices in the Huawei P40 series, thanks to several leaks and rumors, the company hasn’t revealed any concrete details about the upcoming devices. Nonetheless, we expect to see big improvements in camera technology in the P40 series. However, Huawei’s continued placement on the U.S. Commerce Department’s Entity List means that the company is still unable to sign a new license agreement with Google to distribute Google Mobile Services on any new products. As mentioned earlier, this means that the Huawei P40 series won’t support Google apps and, instead, will feature Huawei’s own HMS and HMSCore.
Additionally, it’s worth noting that according to a report from The Information (via ArsTechnica), the company is projecting a 20% decline in smartphone sales this year due to the trade ban. The effects of the trade ban weren’t as apparent last year and that can be attributed to two main reasons — a surge in sales in Huawei’s home market of China post-U.S ban that helped ease declining sales globally and the fact that last year the company managed to launch some new devices with GMS onboard by rebranding a few devices that they’d already launched before the ban. Despite the lack of GMS, however, we expect Huawei to pack in some innovative features in its upcoming flagships and we can’t wait to try out its HMS ecosystem in action.
Featured image: Leaked Huawei P40 Pro “Premium Edition” render
Update: Live Stream Details
Huawei has reached out to share the live stream details of the P40 launch. The event starts at 13:00 GMT on Thursday, March 26th. Richard Yu will head the keynote, and his speech will be translated into six different languages: English, Spanish, French, Italian, Arabic, and Russian. Embedded below is the UK English language live stream.