Honor was arguably the star of MWC 2023 in Barcelona, the company unveiling its Magic5 and Magic5 Pro and announcing the global rollout of the Magic Vs. In the aftermath we had a chance to speak to George Zhao, Honor CEO, and discuss the company’s plan going forward.
Discussing the Honor Magic5 Pro and the Honor Magic Vs, Zhao confirmed both will get 3 years of Android upgrades and 5 years of security patches. More excitingly, he said the Magic Vs is coming to global store shelves within the next quarter, finally giving the Galaxy Fold lineup some competition.
The executive said his team feels Europe as a second home and his company treats 2023 as its year 1 here as it only now managed to gather a strong lineup of phones to sell on the Old Continent. The company considers opening physical stores internally, but prefers to stick with carriers and retail partners until it builds an even stronger portfolio.
There is now an R&D and product center that operates specifically in Europe, though, which would help the brand to grow.
It’s not as great news for the US market though. George Zhao confirmed the step-by-step approach of Honor and since the American market is tough to penetrate the company will need more time still to prepare.
We spent some time with the new Honor Magic5 Pro flagship (seen here in Glacier Blue)
The Honor Magic Vs is one of the lightest foldables with a vertical hinge, and this is what Honor was after when development began. Zhao said he believes the future of foldables is to be used as a mixture of tablets and smartphones, and after addressing the issue of weight, it will also work on providing thinner devices with better battery life.
Zhao predicts foldables’ sales will really explode when they manage to trim enough weight and shed a few more millimeters, but doesn’t believe they will entirely replace bar phones. Instead, he expects them to co-exist in the long term as different users have different priorities. Similarly, he believes there will be enough demand for both clamshells and horizontal foldables and both form factors will be around for a while longer.
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