AT&T and T-Mobile customers looking for an affordable Android smartphone just got another great option: the Huawei P8 Lite is now available and unlocked for only $249.
The device marks a concerted effort to go after a portion of the consumer market that Huawei suggests has been alienated. At an event in New York City, Huawei’s President of operations in the USA exclaimed, “End users should not pay for the company’s advertisement. Should not pay for the company’s sponsorship. Customers should pay for exactly what they are getting- the product.”
Carrier partnerships will still be of huge importance to Huawei, but their new E-Commerce strategy will allow them to offer the most competitive prices. In case you missed it, those comments on advertising and sponsorship dollars being rolled into the device cost are clear swipes at heavy spenders such as Samsung, Apple, and HTC, whose ad budgets probably outpace the GDP of small countries.
The most important specification may be the low price, but the P8 Lite holds its ground in some important areas, including its 5-inch screen, dual SIM card slots, 13MP camera, 5MP front camera, 2GB RAM, and 2200 mAh battery.
Most disappointing is that the device launches with Android 4.4 KitKat, a fact that we hope gets rectified with a timeline for updating to Android 5.X Lollipop (or even Android M). Still, at a price point of $249 unlocked, you’d be hard pressed to find a better bargain… even without the freebies Huawei is throwing in.
Those freebies come in the form of support:
- 2-year warranty
- Localized repair with free shipping
- US based call center support
- Additional support options including live online chat
Buying unlocked devices can be intimidating for less tech savvy shoppers and this initiative by Huawei should go a long way in gaining the trust and comfort of potential customers.