Huawei plans to announce the Mate 40 series at an event on October 22nd.
The company rolled out an invitation early on October 10th, but it was sparse on detail. Other than mentioning the Mate 40 line and the date, the invite says ‘Leap Further Ahead’ and shows an image of the sky and trees taken from within what looks to be a large concrete tube.
— R_A_F_A_L (@R_A_F_A_L) October 10, 2020
Huawei’s plan to launch Mate 40 devices comes as the company struggles with mounting U.S. restrictions and bans. All Huawei devices released after the P30 Pro shipped without access to the Google Play Store thanks to U.S. restrictions. Last year’s Mate 30 and 30 Pro were the first to launch without the Play Store.
In lieu of the Play Store, Huawei offers its own AppGallery, which has grown in recent months but still lacks many apps. It’s worth noting there are ways to sideload and install Android apps without using the Play Store or AppGallery. However, many Android apps rely on Google Mobile Services (GMS) and other Google-made technologies like Play Services, which Google often uses to supply quick over-the-air (OTA) updates to parts of Android when a typical Android system update won’t do.
There’s also Firebase, a Google-owned platform used to develop mobile and web apps. Firebase handles important parts of many apps, such as notification delivery. Without these services, many Android apps won’t work properly, or at all.
Still, Huawei’s hardware offerings remain excellent, with the company’s past smartphones continuing to offer superb cameras, great displays and more. Enthusiasts may love these phones, but for most average consumers in Western markets like Canada, Huawei phones without Google services are a tough sell.
Moreover, the Mate 40 phone could be the last Huawei phones sporting Kirin chipsets since U.S. restrictions have cut the company off from chipset manufacturers. There will likely be some interesting surprises and developments at the event, so it will be an interesting one to tune into.