Huawei’s Mate 8 Smartphone Goes Official, Premium Features and Android Marshmallow in Tow


November 26th, the date Chinese smartphone maker Huawei was expected to unveil its latest high-end smartphone, the Mate 8, came and went and the company delivered on its promise.

Coming hot on the heels of the launch of another member of the Mate family of smartphones, the Mate S, the Huawei Mate 8 builds on its sibling by sticking with the same premium build (aerospace-grade aluminum). The Mate 8 will be the first Huawei device to ship with Android 6.0 Marshmallow and Huawei’s reworked overlay, version 4.0 of its Emotion UI.

The Huawei Mate 8 is also the first device to pack Huawei’s new HiSilicon chip, the Kirin 950 which is backed by the most powerful coprocessor in the market at the moment to eliminate the need to constantly wake the device for purposes of handling things like speech recognition, music playback, sensors and GPS navigation. Add to the fact that Huawei put in a rather beefy battery and always having to carry a powerbank or a charger is not something buyers of the device will be considering.

While it was anticipated that Huawei would finally out its first smartphone with a Quad HD display, that ain’t happening soon since the Mate 8 still packs a full HD display and like we saw on the P8, Huawei knows how to put up a show when it comes to those so it is not like users will be missing a lot.

The Huawei Mate 8’s specs are as follows:

  • Size: 157.1 x 80.6 x 7.9 mm
  • Weight: 185g
  • Display: 6-inch Full HD (1080 x 1920, 368ppi) protected by Corning’s Gorilla Glass 4
  • Chipset: Quad-core 2.3 GHz Cortex-A72 + Quad-core 1.8 GHz Cortex A53 backed by a Mali T880
  • Camera: 13-megapixel shooter with optical image stabilization (OIS), phase detection autofocus (PDAF), dual-LED (dual tone) flash / 8-megapixel front-facing
  • Memory: 3GB RAM+32 GB onboard storage / 4GB RAM+64/128 GB internal storage – internal storage can be expanded using a microSD card up to 128 GB
  • Battery: 4,000mAh
  • Operating System: Android 6.0 Marshmallow
  • Network: 3G, 4G LTE
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac / Bluetooth 4.2 / USB 2.0
  • Other: Fingerprint sensor at the back, Dual-SIM (second SIM slot also doubles up as microSD slot)

The Huawei Mate 8 which comes in Champagne Gold, Moonlight Silver, Space Gray and Mocha Brown colour options is currently available only in China where it was launched with availability details in the international market expected to be announced in early January 2016 at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.

Pricing of the device will vary depending with the storage configuration. The variant of the device with 32 GB internal storage and 3GB RAM will go for an equivalent of $470 while the 64GB+4GB RAM version will go for about $580 and the 128 GB+4GB RAM variant will cost an equivalent of $690.