Honour Zhao Ming The competitor of Magic V2 is not foldable screens, but flat panel phones

Competitor of Magic V2 is flat panel phones, not foldable screens

【Phoneauto】In the field of foldable screens this year, there are two dark horses, one is the Huawei Mate X3, and the other is the recently released Honor Magic V2. The former has set an innovative benchmark for other foldable screen phones, while the latter has “coveted” the market share of flat-screen phones, completely opening up the competition pattern in the smartphone market.

On the evening of July 12th, the new generation foldable screen phone Magic V2 officially debuted. With a body thickness of 9.9mm and a body weight of 231g, it is even thinner and lighter than some flat-screen phones on the market. Honor has successfully brought foldable screen phones into the millimeter era. It took five years from the birth of the first foldable screen phone to surpass the thinness of flat-screen phones, but Honor achieved it in just one and a half years. Since becoming independent in 2021, Honor’s profound technical reserves and the spirit of continuous exploration have enabled the Magic V2 to achieve great success.

Naturally, good products need to be recognized by the market. At the opening of pre-sales, the sales volume of Honor Magic V2 on the four major e-commerce platforms in the first 12 hours broke the record of sales volume and sales revenue of all Android phones, including flat-screen phones, in nearly a year. The pre-sales performance far exceeded expectations. The estimated delivery time for orders has now been pushed to before September 20th, which shows its popularity. In the interview session after the launch event, Honor CEO Zhao Ming even said:

Now, the second quarter of 2023 has just passed. Although the data from major market analysis agencies has not been released yet, we can see from Counterpoint’s report on the performance of the global smartphone market in the first quarter of 2023 that the overall market is still declining, with global smartphone shipments down 14% year-on-year and 7% quarter-on-quarter to 280.2 million units. According to a survey by TrendForce, global smartphone production in the first quarter of 2023 is only 250 million units, a decline of 19.5% compared to the same period in 2022. The decline is not only the largest in recent years, but also the lowest quarterly production since 2014. It is not easy for manufacturers to break through.

Looking at foldable smartphones, the global market for foldable screen models increased against the trend by 64% in the first quarter, reaching 2.5 million units. Among them, the shipment volume of foldable screen smartphones in the Chinese market increased by 117% year-on-year, reaching 1.08 million units, accounting for 43.2% of the global shipment volume of foldable screen smartphones. Although compared to the flat panel market with hundreds of millions of shipments, this is somewhat insignificant, foldable screen smartphones have become a must-have for future manufacturers with higher prices and more advanced technology, and can even be understood as “those who have foldable screens will dominate the world”.

Since its independence, Honor has been laying out the foldable screen market. In January 2022, it released its first foldable screen smartphone, the Magic V, and updated it to the Magic Vs at the end of the year. Now, with the Magic V2, Honor is actually just a “practice period” rookie in the foldable screen market for a year and a half. Interestingly, Honor has released three foldable screens, and the timing of the three can be said to be completely unrelated. It’s just that this time, the release is in July. The author speculates that Honor may want to have a “lucky start” in July, making its future path in the foldable screen market smoother.

Of course, a lucky start is only a lucky start. Whether Honor can truly stand up in the foldable screen market depends on whether they have genuine technology. Zhao Ming said that Honor has applied all the technological accumulations it has made in the past two and a half years to the Magic V2, so you can see breakthroughs such as the all-new Qinghai Lake battery, the all-new hinge, and shield tunneling steel materials. These are all technological reserves that Honor has been working on since its independence. The logic of Honor’s research and development is to develop a generation of products, conduct technological pre-research from N+1 to N+2, and with this generation of products, go back to the starting point and find the answer to the question of what kind of foldable screen consumers cannot resist.

At the beginning of Honor’s independence, some of the products released were considered by many to be Huawei’s shadow. Later, Honor’s product line president, Fang Fei, stated at the launch of Honor Magic V that Honor Magic V is a self-developed product and did not take a drawing from Huawei. In fact, from independence to the present, Honor has always had its own persistence in technological innovation. Zhao Ming stated in an interview that Honor’s mentality in the second year was a process of ups and downs in growth. The past two years have been a period of accumulation and preparation for Honor, continuously building future competitiveness. For Honor, these two years are extremely valuable, laying the foundation for Honor’s future. 2023 is a year of full explosion of product strength and innovation for Honor. As we enter 2023, we will fulfill our promises. Any product and technological breakthroughs and innovations require accumulation and accumulation.

Since independence, Honor has invested more than 10% of its income in research and development each year. 2023 is the year to witness the achievements. The self-developed RF enhancement chip C1 on the Magic5 series has made the Magic5 series a benchmark for 5G communication experience. In terms of battery life, the Qinghai Lake battery has solved the problem of thinness and endurance of flagship products. In terms of photography, the Eagle Eye camera has been launched, allowing for faster capturing of fleeting moments. On the Honor 90 series, the zero-risk dimming eye protection screen has also become an eye protection ace in the industry, helping users take better care of their eyes. In this Magic V2, Honor has brought the ultimate experience of ultra-thin folding screen through comprehensive reconstruction, and the comprehensive technological breakthroughs have given Honor the courage to compete with Apple. Zhao Ming said,

This year, as Honor enters its third year as an independent brand, Zhao Ming summed up Honor’s performance in four words – “gradually entering a good state”. On the one hand, there has been an explosion in product strength, and on the other hand, Honor is one of the few brands in the Chinese market that continues to expand its offline retail presence, increase experience stores, and enhance various aspects of its development. Thirdly, this year is the first year for Honor in the European market, and so far, overseas markets have exceeded last year’s total shipments and retail sales in just five months.

In the face of potential future opportunities, Zhao Ming also gave his own predictions. Firstly, within the next 3-5 years, smartphones (including foldable screens) will still be the best interactive carriers for consumers. Secondly, the large-scale AI model on the device side, AIGC, is a brand new opportunity. Thirdly, the combination of multiple devices and multiple scenarios, Honor’s MagicRing trust environment will become stronger and stronger.

In the interview, Zhao Ming also expressed his attitude. Since the day Honor became independent, the goal has been to compete with the strongest competitors. The competitor of Magic V2 is the traditional flat-screen phones. Honor has established the entire organization and system architecture for the future-oriented MagicOS in 2021, with the goal of being on par with and surpassing iOS. At the launch event, Zhao Ming also presented a set of data. In terms of smoothness, MagicOS 7.0 has advantages in 30% of scenarios, is on par in 33% of scenarios, and has gaps in 37% of scenarios. MagicOS 8.0 will bring even more surprises.

Zhao Ming also pointed out that when all brands join the foldable screen field, the industry’s development will definitely accelerate. If Apple were to make a foldable screen phone one day, they would change from being a leader to a follower, which would be welcomed by the entire industry. Honor’s goal is to truly expand the foldable screen track and make it a mainstream track. Perhaps from this perspective, we can better understand why Zhao Ming shouted the slogan “Magic V2 wants to bid farewell to Apple’s dominance” at the time.

Regarding the rumors of Huawei’s return to 5G products in the second half of the year, Zhao Ming also clearly stated that from an industry perspective, whether facing Apple or Huawei, there indeed needs to be a situation of fierce competition. Honor is working to create this situation with the Magic V2, which not only aims to achieve the ultimate in foldable screens, but also aims to break the boundaries between foldable and flat-screen phones, delivering a “cross-border” impact after undergoing devilish refinement.

As the third foldable screen phone launched by Honor, the Magic V2 incorporates many technologies that Honor has accumulated for a long time, ultimately achieving a thickness of 9.9mm. It not only broadens consumers’ horizons, but also provides the industry with new problem-solving ideas. Among foldable screen phones, the Magic V2 is the thinnest, and it also achieves breakthroughs in flat-screen phones. This is both a beginning and a direction that all manufacturers, including Honor, will continue to pursue in the future.”

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