T-Mobile may tap Huawei for myTouch phone lineup

A Huawei handset for T-Mobile.

What used to be exclusive to HTC is turning into an opportunity for its peers: T-Mobile is reportedly choosing handsets from Huawei to be part of the carrier’s myTouch smartphone lineup. The first myTouch arrived in 2009 from HTC and has seen several iterations and variants.

T-Mobile eventually supplemented HTC’s designs with one from LG — the low-cost myTouch — and PocketNow says that Huawei is joining the myTouch family with two handsets. Both phones, the U8680 and U8730, are nearly identical; the main difference being that one has a slide-out QWERTY keyboard in landscape mode.

This news may sound bad for HTC, which recently reduced its smartphone sales estimates and then fell short of even those. But the myTouch line of phones isn’t considered to be a cutting-edge series of devices. These are generally in the middle of the smartphone range, with pricing usually around $149. The myTouch line is capable, but not top of the line.

And that’s where HTC is now focusing. Earlier this week at the Mobile World Congress event, the company introduced the HTC One line, a set of phones filled with the latest hardware components and features. The HTC One S is slated for T-Mobile this spring, with a dual-core processor and a 960 x 540 Super AMOLED display, and will run Android 4.0. The Huawei models use lower-quality 800 x 480 resolution and will arrive with Android 2.3.

So this isn’t terribly bad news for HTC, although if their high-end smartphone strategy fails, the company now has one more competitor in the mid-tier handset market. For Huawei, however, this is a clear win. The Chinese-based handset maker is slowly gaining a larger foothold in the U.S., one phone at a time. Or in this case, two.

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