Huawei’s reach as a global player is well known to us. The manufacturer makes a big impact with its low cost smartphones, which extends all the way up to other parts of Asia along with Europe and isn’t just limited to China. The company recently joined hands with Microsoft as its Windows Phone 8 partner to expand Microsoft’s reach beyond Asia, Europe and North America. And as part of that initiative, the two companies have launched the Huawei 4Afrika smartphone made specifically for the African continent.
As you would expect, this is a mid-ranged device which should cost about $150. Speaking about the specs of the smartphone, it’s basically a rebranded version of the Huawei Ascend W1 which was the company’s first WP8 smartphone. This smartphone however, packs a slightly different appearance as it is catered specifically for the vast African continent. The smartphone will be made available in Black, Red, White and Blue color variants, so the buyers have plenty of colors to choose from. Microsoft and Huawei apparently want this phone to guide users in making the switch from feature phones to smartphones, and the price tag should certainly help with that. In addition to that, the customers will also be treated to some region specific apps thanks to the work put in by African developers on the Windows Phone 8 marketplace. Countries like South Africa, Morocco, Angola, Egypt, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Kenya will get it first by the end of February. It is commendable that Huawei is making an attempt to bring respectable smartphones in these regions and we hope other manufacturers follow suit.
The Huawei 4Afrika features a 4-inch 480×800 resolution display, 4GB of internal storage (expandable via microSD), 512MB of RAM, 5MP rear camera sensor, VGA front facing camera and a 1.2 GHz dual core Snapdragon chip. Those are pretty decent specs for a low end smartphone and I’m certain it will find plenty of takers. Sure it might struggle a little with multitasking a little, but that’s supposed to be a bonus feature for a smartphone of its caliber.
The African continent doesn’t have as big a market for smartphones as Asia, Europe or North America. The real problem however is not availability, but the time it takes for some manufacturers to launch their smartphones in the continent. Countries like South Africa, Kenya and Egypt have a bigger market for smartphones compared to other African nations and manufacturers should try and make the best of that.