Dec 24 by Karen Chiu

Xiaomi’s MIX Alpha concept phone coming soon?

It’s been three months since Xiaomi unveiled the MIX Alpha, its all-screen concept phone. Now Chinese media have noticed the device has finally showed up on Xiaomi’s online store, as well as Alibaba’s Tmall. 


The phones aren’t available for purchase yet, but Xiaomi has said before they will be released in limited quantities at the end of the year. 

(Abacus is a unit of the South China Morning Post, which is owned by Alibaba, the owner of Tmall.) 

Dec 13 by Karen Chiu

ZTE will have 10 new 5G phones next year

First it was Xiaomi. Now ZTE is also promising 10 5G phone models in 2020, according to Chinese media citing a company executive. Some of them will cost less than 2,000 yuan (US$286), he said. 

The company showed off its first 5G phone earlier this year at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. 

Dec 06 by Karen Chiu

Huawei unveils budget 5G phone in China

The Nova 6 is Huawei’s latest 5G phone designed for the budget-conscious. 


For a starting price of US$540, you get Huawei’s in-house Kirin 990 5G chipset and a total of five cameras, including a 105-degree ultra-wide angle lens on the front.  

Dec 06 by Karen Chiu

Next year’s Xiaomi phones will have Qualcomm’s 5G chips

Xiaomi is planning to launch more than 10 5G phones next year. Now we know that at least some will carry Qualcomm’s next-generation flagship 5G chips. 

Click here to read more. 

Dec 02 by Karen Chiu

Xiaomi is arriving in Japan next week

Despite being the world’s fourth largest smartphone brand, Xiaomi has yet to officially launch in Japan. That’s about to change soon, according to a tweet from Xiaomi Japan on Monday. 

More details here

Dec 02 by Karen Chiu

Realme says no more 4G phones next year

The CEO of Realme says the Chinese budget brand will no longer release 4G phones in China next year.  

Even though the brand only launched last year, Realme has quickly risen in popularity in India, its primary target market. It was the country’s fourth best-selling smartphone brand in the most recent quarter. 

Analysts say the world is going to buy more smartphones next year thanks to the arrival of 5G, but more than 80% of the handsets shipped are still expected to be 4G devices.

Nov 29 by Karen Chiu

Realme may soon become independent from Oppo

It’s only one year old, but Realme is already India’s fourth best-selling smartphone brand. And as Masha explained, it might be about to turn into an independent brand, just like OnePlus -- which is also owned by Chinese phone conglomerate BBK Electronics.  

Nov 29 by Karen Chiu

Oppo teases thin Reno3 Pro 5G phone

A Weibo account believed to belong to Oppo executive Brian Shen shared a teaser image of the company’s upcoming 5G phone. According to the post, the device will be just 7.7mm thick, making it one of the thinnest 5G phones. 

It’s also said that the Reno3 Pro 5G will have a glass body.

Nov 27 by Karen Chiu

Vivo X30 will have a punch-hole screen

Vivo has released a new teaser video on Weibo for its upcoming X30. You can see that the display has a punch-hole cutout on the top right. It also features a quad-camera on the back and offers 5G connectivity. 

Nov 27 by Karen Chiu

You can buy a transparent suitcase from Xiaomi

Forget about Xiaomi’s transparent phone. The gadget maker is now releasing a transparent suitcase

Unlike the Mi 9 Transparent Edition phone, which doesn’t show the real internals of the handset, the Mi Suitcase Transparent City Edition appears to actually reveal the stuff you put inside. Only one side of the suitcase is see-through though. 

Nov 26 by Karen Chiu

Honor unveils its first 5G phone

Honor is best known for being the poor man’s Huawei. The budget sub-brand specializes in putting high-end features from Huawei phones into cheaper handsets.

The new V30 and V30 Pro are no different. Starting at 3,299 yuan (US$470), you get 5G compatibility along with a 40MP back camera and dual selfie lenses.


The caveat? Because of the US-China trade war, Huawei is still shipping new phones without Google services. So for now, the phone is only for sale in China.

Nov 26 by Karen Chiu

More about Samsung’s China-exclusive foldable phone…

We told you last week about Samsung’s new foldable phone that’s only for sale in China. As IDC's Bryan Ma explains, the model is actually part of Samsung's long-running W-series: 

Nov 26 by Karen Chiu

Huawei’s new tablet looks like an iPad Pro

The Huawei MatePad Pro resembles Apple’s iPad Pro not just in name, but also in looks: 

A release date has been announced in China. Josh wrapped up all you need to know about the freshly unveiled tablet. 

Nov 25 by Karen Chiu

Xiaomi is having a good time in Europe

Europeans are buying a lot more Xiaomi phones these days. Sales last quarter were up a whopping 73% from last year, according to a new report.

But it’s still not the best-selling Chinese brand on the continent, as Masha explained here.

Nov 25 by Karen Chiu

How to shoot cinematic video using just a phone and a gimbal

Want to shoot great cinematic footage without investing in expensive gear? 

Our video producer Chris has some professional tips here. He uses an iPhone 11 Pro and a DJI Osmo Mobile 3 in his guide, but you can swap in any of your favorite Android phone!

Nov 22 by Karen Chiu

Testing out Razer’s gaming controller for Android

Here’s what we’re playing here at Abacus this Friday:

The Razer Junglecat (top) is essentially a pair of clip-on controllers that lets you turn some Android phones into a Nintendo Switch substitute. That includes models from Huawei and Samsung. 

Our review is coming soon, so stay tuned!

Nov 22 by Karen Chiu

Huawei’s foldable phone sold out again

Some in China are calling Huawei’s foldable Mate X 5G the “best investment of the year.” The phone has sold out for the third time in a week, according to Chinese media. 


The model has been released in limited quantities in China starting a week ago, and each time it has run out within minutes. One analyst estimated that about 100,000 phones were made available in the first batch. Scalpers are reportedly selling the US$2,400 handset for up to US$11,300! 

Nov 22 by Ravi Hiranand

Samsung has a new foldable just for China

There’s a common line you hear when new tech products launch: “I’ll wait for the next generation.” Well, it appears Samsung’s next foldable is already here.

To be fair, it’s a bit of a stretch calling the W20 5G a next-gen device, since it is virtually identical to the Galaxy Fold. But there are some key differences: Karen ran through the changes here, including an intriguing one to its most important featue.


The other surprise? This phone is only for China.