Home / / Huawei unveils lithe Ascend P7

Huawei unveils lithe Ascend P7

Rebuilt ‘from inside out’; revamped camera functions cater to selfies

At 6.5mm slim, Ascend P7 is quite a lot thinner than Samsung and Apple flagships.
At 6.5mm slim, Ascend P7 is quite a lot thinner than Samsung and Apple flagships.

China-based vendor Huawei today unveiled its Ascend P7 4G smartphone, successor to the Ascend P6.

GALLERY: The slender Huawei Ascend P7

The company claims it redesigned the Ascend P7 "from the inside out", in a bid to enhance the performance of both hardware and software. The handset carries a 5-inch full HD display with 1920 x 1080 resolution, 445ppi and a 16:9 aspect ratio. It also employs Corning Gorilla Glass 3 in its front and rear covers.

The device includes a 13MP rear-facing camera, which uses Sony's fourth-generation BSI sensor, image signal processer (ISP), IMAGESmart 2.0 software and f/2.0 aperture. The onboard Ultra Snapshot function enables the user to be camera-ready 1.2 seconds after double-clicking the down volume button while in locked mode, instead of spending time trying to unlock the screen, Huawei said.

The front-facing camera is a high-end 8MP model - a further example of a spreading trend among vendors to service "selfie"-obsessed consumers. It integrates a 5P non-spherical lens, a panorama function and 10-level auto-facial enhancement in "beauty" mode. Users can also take a selfie video with the 1080p HD video playback. The handset also includes a built-in mirror function and selfie preview window.

A Voice Photo function allows photos to be accompanied by 10-second audio clips.

GALLERY: The slender Huawei Ascend P7

Huawei's proprietary Image Signal Processor (ISP) allows the smartphone to control a range of functions that mimic those found in professional digital SLRs, including autofocus, white balance, and noise reduction. Users can also select the focus and exposure metering function with one touch so the preferred focus and exposure position can be set to optimise image precision.

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The metallic appearance is created by a seven-layered rear-surface treatment with a refined "spin effect" micro-pattern design, according to Huawei.

GALLERY: The slender Huawei Ascend P7

At 6.5mm slim, Ascend P7 is quite a lot thinner than Samsung and Apple flagships. The Galaxy S5 measures 8.1mm at its thickest point and even the iPhone 5S only manages 7.6mm. However, the record for the thinnest smartphone on the market, as far as we can tell, goes to little-known vendor Gionee, which launched its 5.5-mm thin Elife S5.5 in February at this year's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

"Huawei's relentless commitment to developing premium quality smartphones over the past three years has paid off. We are now ranked number three globally in terms of smartphone shipments, and our brand recognition is growing steadily in key regions such as China and Western Europe," said, Richard Yu, CEO, Huawei Consumer Business Group (BG).

"Today, the launch of Huawei Ascend P7 once again challenges existing industry standards by redefining smartphone design, camera experience, and connectivity, to provide people with an unprecedented mobile experience."

"Huawei Ascend P7 was inspired by the natural curves of a water droplet which instills the phone with a sense of natural purity, and also gives users a more comfortable grip," said Joon Suh Kim, vice president, Mobile Devices, Consumer Experience Design Center, Huawei Consumer BG. "It took us months of extensive design refinements to achieve this excellent balance of form and function."

GALLERY: The slender Huawei Ascend P7

The Ascend P7 supports 4G LTE speed and a dual antenna design is aimed at improving signal reception. The P7 also uses smart network-switching technology to stabilise connections during weak signal reception to minimise battery drainage. 

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The device is powered by a 2500 mAh lithium-polymer battery and comes with proprietary battery-saving features. In addition, the power-saving management function enables users to save battery power by switching off any applications running in the background that are consuming unnecessary power.

GALLERY: The slender Huawei Ascend P7

The P7 is also able to adopt the most suitable use of power when it is running on less than 10% of total battery. When enabled, the screen will dim and only the basic functions of the phone will remain activated, including voice calls and the contact page. It will also stretch the remaining 10% of battery power to last 24 hours on standby, Huawei claimed.

A refreshed user interface, Emotion UI 2.3, is aimed at smartphone newcomers, providing customisable lock and home screens, with two enhanced UIs. Huawei invites users to "easily personalise the smartphone management software, including a harassment filter, permission manager, network and notification management, and power saving modes".

GALLERY: The slender Huawei Ascend P7

Huawei Ascend P7 is available in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait from May, with other markets to follow. Exact regional price details are not yet available, but the RRP is EUR449 (AED2,299).