The Huawei Mate S could give Apple a run for its money

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Xiaomi may be the biggest name in China’s smartphone market at the moment, but Huawei has the potential to be the first Chinese smartphone maker to become a significant player in Western markets. The company has been growing at a ridiculous pace these past few years thanks to its impressive lineup of high-end devices, the latest of which is the Mate S. First unveiled at Huawei’s IFA 2015 press event yesterday, it’s clear that the Mate S was designed specifically to take on the iPhone 6S Plus, and Huawei has equipped it with a vast arsenal of features to do so, including Force Touch, which makes it the first smartphone in the world to include the technology. 

Today at its IFA 2015 press event, Huawei unveiled the Mate S, a follow-up to last year’s fingerprint sensor-enabled Ascend Mate 7. The device, which has now shrunk in size from six inches to a more manageable 5.5 inches, is a refresh that borrows the all-metal looks of its predecessor. But more so than looking back to the Ascend Mate 7, Huawei’s new flagship draws heavy comparison to Apple’s marquee smartphone: the iPhone 6 Plus. Huawei CEO Richard Yu walked attendees through the basics of the Mate S: 5.5-inch 1080p screen with 2.5D fourth-generation Gorilla Glass display, 7.2mm thickness, Kirin chipset, 13-megapixel rear camera with optical image stabilization, stepped battery rated for over one full day and an improved rear-fixed fingerprint sensor. Where the Mate S’ design is concerned, Yu specifically called out its curved metal build — what he referred to as “diamond cut” — as being more comfortable for most consumers to hold. Gone from the Mate S are the typical Android shortcut keys as they are now hidden in the Mate S’ “magic bottom” just beneath the screen. And down at the base, surrounding the micro-USB port, are dual speakers.

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