By firstname.lastname@example.org (InfoseekChina)
(China Daily) Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, the Shenzhen-based electronics giant, is kicking off global sales of its flagship wearable on Wednesday at an industry expo in Berlin, a full six months after the device’s debut.
The long-awaited move, however, means the Chinese company is already well behind its much-vaunted rival the Apple Watch – the not-so-perfect gadget which experts still suggest has a strong lead in the sector.
The Huawei Watch, running on Google Inc’s tailored operating system for wearable devices known as Google Wear, is believed to carry a price tag of over $350.
According to a listing already on Amazon.com, the entry-level product features a stainless steel face with a black leather strap, with its most expensive version featuring a gold-plated stainless steel panel and band.
The latest addition to the smartwatch market will be available in developed markets including the United States, Germany and Japan, according to the company’s twitter account.
The device is unlikely to enter Huawei’s home turf, and biggest market for its smartphones, for some time, however.
Because not all Android Wear features are available on the Chinese mainland, its launch could cause a headache for Huawei, according to Wang Jingwen, an analyst at industry consultancy Canalys China.
The good news is Google says the Android Wear will be compatible with Apple Inc’s iOS system, meaning iPhone users will have no problem linking the watch with a smartphone.
“Huawei needs to build in localized features for China, so losing Android Wear functions will not cause damage to product function,” Wang said.
“The Android Wear is not enough for Huawei in China.”
Motorola, now a Lenovo Group Ltd subsidiary, also planned to start selling its wearable Moto 360 on the Chinese mainland last year, but crippled Android Wear functions have left a launch date undecided.
Huawei’s consumer business unit generated $9.09 billion in revenue in the first half of this year, representing an impressive 69 percent year-on-year increase, the company said in July.
Richard Yu, who leads its consumer electronics business, expects full-year earnings to reach $20 billion.
Analysts suggest the Chinese wearables market could prove a hard nut to crack for Huawei after it miraculously made itself a top-three smartphone vendor by shipments over the past 12 months.
Apple has managed to sell 3.6 million first-generation Apple Watches that have less than a day in battery life, in the second quarter, lagging only Fitbit’s 4.4 million, according to research firm IDC.
Fitbit’s most expensive product is selling for under 2,000 yuan ($314) against the cheapest Apple Watch at 2,588 yuan.
Huawei had only been offering its 999-yuan TalkBand wearable series until Wednesday, but has found it difficult to sell to non-Huawei smartphone users. The company has struggled in competition with Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, which shipped 600,000 wearables in the second quarter, IDC said.
Source: China Daily via china.org
Source:: Huawei watch finally makes global debut