Huawei launches 'hybrid' Talkband smart device

The BBC's Mark Gregory has a look at Huawei's new smartband, unveiled for the first time at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

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Chinese electronics giant Huawei has unveiled several new products, including what it called the "world's first hybrid smart band".

The Talkband includes a detachable headset that can be used to make and receive calls.

The firm also refreshed its smartphone line-up with the Ascend G6, and two new "phablets" it hopes can challenge Apple's iPad Mini.

Analysts said the firm would price its devices aggressively.

The company has not yet said how much the Ascend G6 smartphone will cost - but analysts predict it may go on sale for less than $200 (£120).

Huawei executive Shao Yang told the BBC that the company had spent the past four years "catching up with the industry", but now it was time to become "number one".

'Smart enough'

Key to this, the company said, were developments in wearable technology.

The Talkband - a black bracelet device that resembles Nike's Fuel Band product - comes with a detachable headset, as well as monitoring the state of the wearer's fitness.

It will cost 99 euros (£82, $136), the company said.

Huawei claims to have made a smartphone that allows people to take "more beautiful" selfies

Analyst Carolina Milanesi told the BBC that while Huawei's smartband may not be as sophisticated as other, more expensive offerings, its price could tempt people who have so far been unsure of paying for wearable technology.

"They're giving you something that isn't as smart [as others], but is smart enough, for 99 euros, why not?" she said.

"Huawei is not just jumping on the bandwagon - they're trying to think a little bit differently."

The market for smartbands is growing rapidly. Market research firm Canalys estimates that 17 million smart watches and fitness trackers will be sold this year. By 2017, that number is predicted to rise to more than 45 million.

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