Huawei Nova 9 and Honor 50, twin children of separated parents

Last week, US Senator Marco Rubio wrote a letter, signed by other party members, asking Biden to also include Honor on the famous blacklist that bans Huawei, and other Chinese companies, from tapping into American technology. According to Rubio, Huawei is trying to circumvent the embargo to sell its products in Europe.

Honor, we recall, was sold by Huawei to a consortium of Chinese resellers and distributors and after a few months of reorganization it returned to the European market.

The new Honor 50 will be launched in Italy next week, an excellent phone that marks Honor’s return to Italy. A telephone that is part of a new course, where Honor lives as a totally separate company from Huawei.

So how is it possible that the new Huawei Nova 9, announced today, looks like a copy of the Honor 50? Two phones identical in size, weight, battery and most specs, two phones that undoubtedly came from the same design and the same factories.

Obviously change the finish, change the camera, where Huawei uses its 50 megapixel sensor while Honor has chosen a 108 megapixel derived from Samsung, and change the processor, or rather, change the modem part of the processor because Huawei uses a Snapdragon 778 4G . Different twins.

Rubio, on the hunt for conspiracies, may however wonder how Huawei got a Snapdragon 778 4G, a processor that does not exist in the range of a manufacturer, Qualcomm, which is now all 5G. It is clear that this is a deliberately neutered 778 5G, with the 5G part disabled, in order to be sold to Huawei despite the fact that there is another ban here too. In fact, remember that Huawei has access to some processors, as long as they are not the latest generation ones: The Snapdragon 778 is a latest generation 6 nanometer SoC, produced by TSMC with American technology, and the fact that 5G is turned off certainly does not make it a “backward” product.

Returning to the Honor 50 it is evident, and undeniable, that it is a smartphone with still a lot of Huawei technology: there is no longer the Kirin, there is the Snapdragon, but it is the phone that all the orphans of the brand have been waiting for for a long time. EMUI and Huawei quality at the right price, but with Google services.

Taking a big company like Huawei and trying to separate an integrated company like Honor was with Huawei in a few months is not easy. It’s not like taking a MacDonald and turning it into a Burger King, where you just have to change the sign.

Splitting Honor from Huawei, even after the formal sale, is a time-consuming process that runs parallel to product development times that fall into a multi-year cycle. Honor 50 and Nova 8 are children of a project born when Honor was still Huawei.

The next products, Honor guarantees, will begin to have their own identity without losing everything they have been up to now. They will be original products, children of an R&D center that is now independent and it is the same one that Honor has brought home with the acquisition: 5000 engineers, a large part of Huawei’s camera department, has now been hired in Honor and will try to bring tradition continues in the new company.

Honor is no longer Huawei, but it cannot and must not erase the legacy of a past that still belongs to the brand. Honor will have to be good at demonstrating that it can do, on its own, what it did with Huawei: the means are there, the engineers also and partnerships as well, such as the one with Google and Qualcomm that make the phones a little less “Chinese” and a little more “western”.

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