Today was a busy day. Not only did we get three new smartphones, but also a new iPad for good measure. Plus, the Galaxy Note 8 for AT&T started receiving its update to Android 8.0 Oreo, and we even got to see a pretty clear look at the upcoming OnePlus 6. It definitely wasn’t a quiet Tuesday.
Huawei, for its part, took up the majority of the attention early on in the day. The company unveiled its newest flagship smartphone, the P20 Pro, along with a variant that boasts a slightly smaller display. Huawei’s newest high-end smartphone offers everything one might want from a flagship, including a powerful processor (even if it isn’t a Qualcomm Snapdragon offering), a big, bezel-less display, and they even included three cameras on the back.
Because apparently we should already be done with the dual camera setups.
I just need to get something out of the way first: the P20 Pro is an expensive phone. The handset costs $ 1,114 here in the United States. With so many people calling out Apple for the iPhone X’s price tag, and people hoping Samsung wouldn’t follow suit with the Galaxy S9’s price, I can’t help but wonder if a price tag like that, for a phone from Huawei, automatically rules it out of contention for a lot of folks out there.
Which led me to wonder about unlocked phones in general. Huawei isn’t a stranger to offering unlocked devices in the United States market, mostly because it hasn’t been able to get a foot in the door with U.S. wireless carriers — and it doesn’t look like that’s going to change anytime soon. But, another thing to get out of the way: apparently the P20 Pro (and the P20) isn’t going to be available in the United States, by any official channels.
That means if you want the new smartphone with a trio of cameras on the back, you’ll need to go through one of the international retail options out there to pick up an unlocked option. Which is definitely a possibility, but, again, that price tag definitely has to be on the mind of any potential buyers.
There are some advantages to going with unlocked options. You get software updates faster, which is always a nice bonus. You also don’t have to deal with any carrier bloatware. For me, the lack of preinstalled software is a big enough reason to go with an unlocked phone.
So, with new devices like the Huawei P20 Pro, or Xiaomi’s Mi Mix 2S, and plenty of other options –the OnePlus 6 is probably going to be worth the attention later this year– I wanted to reach out and see how you feel about unlocked phones these days. Do you prefer to go that route? Or do you prefer to pick up your phones directly from the carrier? Let me know!