Huawei's Mate 10 Pro is coming to the United States unlocked next month


Huawei is now the No. 3 smartphone maker globally (behind the more familiar names Apple and Samsung), but its longstanding inability to get carrier distribution means that even the greatest flagship will probably fail to make much of a dent in the U.S.

Last month, members of the Senate and House intelligence committees sent a letter asking the Federal Communications Commission to review any relationship with Huawei and requested the FCC get briefed on the security concerns raised in 2012. The Huawei Mate 10 Pro should be a nice addition for Windows Phone users interested in moving to Android: The Mate 10 Pro comes with a 6.0-inch QHD+OLED borderless display, Huawei's Kirin 970 AI-enhanced SoC, a 4000 mAh battery with AI-powered Battery Management and many other premium features for demanding consumers.

The letter to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, which was signed by 18 lawmakers, noted concerns about Chinese companies in the US telecommunications industry.

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Actually helping Huawei become a major player here in the States, however, may take more than a Lasso of Truth.

Huawei's grand US distribution plans have hit a slight snag - as a deal with the country's largest wireless carrier AT&T has reportedly fallen through at the very last minute. The South Korean company was found guilty of infringing on two 4G standard essential patents related to telecommunication technology and equipment owned by Huawei.

During an emotional keynote at CES 2018 this week, Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei's consumer business group, said that its failed AT&T deal was "a big loss" for consumers and one less smartphone option for many users.

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"Everybody knows that in the United States market that over 90 percent of smartphones are sold by carrier channels", Yu said.

The letter said Congress has "long been concerned about Chinese espionage in general, and Huawei's role in that espionage in particular", according to the Times' report. According to the reports, AT&T has decided not to carry Huawei's smartphones.

The Huawei Mate 10 Pro will still be available as an unlocked device in the United States, and it's going to be up for preorder starting on February 4 and hit the shelves on February 18 with a $799 price tag. It also provided a list of major retailing partners, including USA electronics-seller Best Buy and online giants, Microsoft and New Egg.

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Yu made the point that American consumers can not have the best and widest choice of mobile devices if some products, including those of Huawei's, are denied them. This reflects not only the dynamism of Chinese companies and their growing strength as they have moved up the value chain, but also the increasingly prominent economic competition between the two countries.