Nubia Flip launch set for Apr 9; Apple to unveil budget AirPods!

Recently, the China National Intellectual Property Administration disclosed a patent by Huawei named “Foldable Screen Device.”

Media reports reveal that Huawei is speeding up the development of a new “trifold screen smartphone” and has started mass preparation. The product is expected to launch as early as the second quarter of this year.

A Huawei insider confirmed, “Several years ago, Huawei began the development and planning of this patent technology, achieving new progress with the related patents in 2022.”

However, the mass production and launch date of the phone will still depend on further progress, as stated by a Huawei insider.

Hao-Yu Wang, CEO of Marui Asset Management Ltd., commented, “Based on our research, Huawei is smoothly progressing with the development of the trifold screen smartphone, having initiated tests on the maturity of projects such as the ultra-thin flexible glass cover (UTG) a few months back.”

Wang noted that further collaboration among relevant enterprises is needed to resolve issues like the screen and hinge lifespan under frequent folding, thickness after folding, battery life, and software adaptation in the development of trifold screen devices.

“With the increasing acceptance of trifold screen smartphones, if we calculate with a penetration rate of 40% to 60%, the annual sales could reach between 2.8 to 4.2 million units,” said Wang.

Huawei recently launched its new vertical foldable screen smartphone, Huawei Pocket 2, which boasts excellent craftsmanship, thinness, and nearly invisible folds. This indicates Huawei’s significant technical expertise in foldable products, making the development of a trifold screen a logical step forward. However, the practicality of trifold screens remains to be seen, as no mass-produced products currently prove this concept.

Today, Nubia announced it would hold its Spring 2024 new product launch at 14:00 on April 9, marking the onset of a new era where AI technology becomes universally accessible.

Under the theme “AI FOR ALL,” Nubia aims to integrate AI technology into every one of its products, viewing the development of AI technology as an evolution. Nubia is devoted to incorporating AI into their products, aiming to provide users with a more convenient and intelligent life experience.

At the upcoming launch event, Nubia will display their achievements in the field of AI and demonstrate how these achievements can be applied across various products.

It is reported that the event will introduce Nubia’s first small foldable screen phone — Nubia Flip, which was previously showcased at MWC 2024.

The Nubia Flip features a 6.9-inch foldable OLED screen with a 120Hz refresh rate, along with a 1.43-inch circular OLED external screen. It is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 processor, equipped with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.

Additionally, the device houses a 50MP main camera, a 2MP depth sensor, and a 16MP front camera. It’s equipped with a 4310mAh battery and supports 33W wired fast charging.

Nubia’s upcoming vertical foldable screen smartphone, heatedly anticipated for several months, is expected to be the most affordably priced in the foldable screen market due to its entry-level performance. This likely launch could pave the way for the widespread adoption of foldable screens, making it a great time for interested consumers to consider purchasing. However, foldable screens represent just one form factor among smartphones and do not impact the traditional direct-screen phones. Those who are not fans of foldable screens need not hold any bias against this category.

Supply chain analyst Jeff Pu revealed that tech giant Apple plans to launch the highly anticipated budget version of AirPods later this year. This news has sparked widespread interest in the market, indicating Apple’s proactive approach in scaling production, expanding market coverage, and optimizing cost control.

According to a report by Haitong International Securities, a subsidiary of Foxconn will deeply involve in the manufacturing process of the new budget AirPods. To meet the production demand for the new earphones, Foxconn plans to increase the assembly of AirPods in its factory in India in the fourth quarter of this year.

This move not only highlights the close cooperation between Apple and Foxconn but also reflects Apple’s emphasis on improving production efficiency and reducing costs.

The launch of budget AirPods demonstrates Apple’s keen insight and positive response to market demand changes. With the growing demand for wireless earphones among consumers, Apple aims to further expand its market share and meet the needs of more consumers by introducing budget AirPods.

Beyond the budget AirPods, Jeff Pu also predicts that Apple will update its existing AirPods Max later this year, which could offer users an enhanced experience.

According to Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman, the new AirPods Max may introduce new color schemes, providing more options to users. However, the most notable update is the switch to a USB-C charging port. This change aligns with the current trend in charging technology and is expected to offer a more convenient and efficient charging experience to users.

Currently, the cheapest wireless earbuds offered on Apple’s official website are the 2nd generation AirPods priced at 999 yuan, a product launched in 2019. Logically, the cost could have decreased by now, but Apple is still able to sell this five-year-old product at a premium price. In my opinion, Apple does not need to introduce a so-called “budget” version of AirPods; all it needs to do is to slash the price of this five-year-old relic by half… But of course, that’s unlikely to happen!

Today, Apple updated its public list of vintage and obsolete products, which includes some older iPhone and iPad models.

Apple has announced the iPhone 6 Plus as “obsolete” globally, meaning Apple Stores and authorized service providers will no longer offer repair or other hardware services.

Typically, Apple considers products “obsolete” seven years after the last sale.

The iPhone 6 Plus, a once-popular model, was launched in September 2014 and discontinued in September 2016. It was once one of the most purchased phones amongst Chinese users.

Software-wise, iOS 13 ceased support for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in 2019.

Furthermore, the fourth-generation iPad mini is listed as “vintage,” indicating it has been discontinued for over five years. The iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus have also been labeled as “vintage.”

This implies that iPhones with a Home button are phasing out of history. The iPhone 6 is already a decade-old product, which feels quite surreal. Which iPhone model are you currently using? Do you plan to stick with Apple for your next phone?

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