For a few years now, Huawei has been looking for ingenious ways around US restrictions that force the company to produce phones without 5G modems. Previously, it allowed some partners to release cases with integrated 5G modems, and now the company is offering the design of its phones to partners. Wiko, a French brand owned by Chinese company Tinno Mobile, has announced for the Chinese market Wiko 5G, a new phone that appears to be just a rebranding for the Huawei Nova 9 SE. It also integrates the necessary 5G hardware.
The new Wiko 5G appears to be Huawei’s way around US restrictions
Huawei is apparently allowed to sell the design of its phones outright, allowing partners to integrate 5G hardware into them without the devices having direct ties to Huawei. Thus, the phones are assembled and sold under a different brand, and even if they integrate the same components and even the same software, they cannot be called Huawei devices.
The Wiko 5G is one of the few phones not made by Huawei that uses the HarmonyOS software platform, so it will be equipped including Huawei Mobile Services, App Gallery, and all of Huawei’s software optimizations for this hardware. If it weren’t for the Wiko logo on the back of the phone, you could tell this is a Huawei Nova 9 SE in 5G variant, a model that never made it to market.
The phone will use the same cameras, with a 108-megapixel main sensor, allow charging at 66W and offer up to 256GB of internal storage. We don’t have a clear list of hardware specs, but the phone will most likely be powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 695 chipset, just like the original model.
The official launch event for the Wiko 5G is scheduled for December 27, exclusively for China.