Huawei has launched the Mate 50 series, a day before Apple’s September presentation, with a feature that the iPhone 14 is believed to include: the capacity to exchange messages through satellite communication. The Mate 50 and Mate 50 Pro will be able to send brief messages and use navigation due to China’s worldwide BeiDou satellite network, which will enable connectivity in locations where there is no cellular coverage.
The flagship Mate 50 series has 4G-only Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 chipsets with 8GB of RAM. The 50 Pro has a slightly larger 6.74-inch OLED display with a refresh rate of 120Hz, while the Mate 50 has a 6.7-inch, 90Hz OLED screen. Both have a 50-megapixel main rear camera with a variable aperture lens with stops ranging from f/1.4 to f/4 — most smartphone cameras have fixed apertures, so a moving aperture is cool, but the lens itself is so small that it’s unlikely to make a significant difference in depth-of-field in most situations.
Both versions share a 13-megapixel f/2.2 ultrawide sensor, and although both have telephoto lenses, the Pro receives an enhanced 64-megapixel camera with 200x digital zoom While the ordinary Mate 50 has 100x digital zoom with a lower-resolution 12-megapixel sensor.
If you think you’re hearing a lot about satellite-based communication these days, you’re right. T-Mobile and SpaceX just announced a collaboration to deliver this functionality to T-Mobile users through Starlink satellites. Apple’s satellite messaging function has been the subject of speculation since last year.
In all of these circumstances, technology will most likely be restricted initially. T-Mobile claims that its system will provide text and even photo messaging, but phone calls and internet will not be available until later. According to Huawei’s description of the technology, the Mate 50 phones will only be able to send messages via satellite, not receive them. In all of these circumstances, satellite-based texting attempts to give an emergency link in areas where there is no signal to send out important messages, rather than a method to keep up with group conversations when you are out of cell range. In any event, we’ll have to wait a bit longer for the functionality in the US Since Huawei’s smartphones aren’t offered here.