(Yicai) Aug. 29 -- Huawei Technologies, China's sixth-biggest phone vendor, today debuted Mate 60 Pro, its first smartphone that supports satellite calls.
Sales started online, half a month earlier than expected, Yicai learned. The manufacturer has not commented on the timing. The minimum price for the new model is CNY6,999 (USD960).
The waning handset giant is targeting more niche markets with a phone that is supposed to always be able to make calls even in remote places. The model features the Shenzhen-based firm's "unbreakable" Kunlun glass and improved imaging.
Industry insiders believe that Huawei has passed its most trying times but the firm still needs to overcome its difficulties regarding mobile phones and other products that require advanced technologies amid sanctions.
Rumors on social media platforms claimed earlier that Huawei intends to resume its strategy and launch two flagship models per year. Indeed, the pace of new releases is accelerating as in the first half, Huawei debuted the P60 series, and the Mate series is also about to be updated in mid-September, close to Apple's next expected product launch event.
The global smartphone market has shrunk this year. In the first quarter, shipments dropped by 15 percent to 270 million units from a year ago, according to data from IDC. Huawei entered the top 10 again with almost 6.8 million units, corresponding to a market share of 2.5 percent, down from 2.8 percent. In China, Huawei is the sixth-largest phonemaker with an 8.8 percent market share.
Editor: Emmi Laine