Huawei MediaQ pictures and hands-on
As well as phones and tablets, another type of device has drawn significant crowds during Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this year: the Android-rocking media hub.
Huawei is also getting in on the act with the MediaQ, and it offers a slightly different proposition in that it's not a set-top-box, rather a set-back-box.
The Huawei MediaQ is designed to attach to the back of a television. It has a tiny footprint and could quite happily sit out of sight on the rear of a set. That's not to say it has to go there, after all your flatscreen may be a lot more flush to the wall than others, and while the device is slim (14mm), that may not suit all situations, but it's nice to see that some are trying to help youe keep things tidy.
Effectively, the small device turns a regular TV into an Android television. It has the same Huawei-built 1.5GHz quad-core processor as the recently announced Huawei Ascend P2 smartphone, and Google Play in order to install apps on the box.
It has 32GB of storage space on board, and a microSD card slot for further expansion. It also has a HDMI port in, and this provides on of the box's most exciting features.
You can plug a Sky, Virgin Media, YouView or Freeview box into the MediaQ and then stream live footage from those services to multiple devices. Huawei hasn't confirmed how many devices exactly, but we understand it is more than 30.
As with its MWC-announced peers, the Huawei box will have plenty of other features on board before launch. Pocket-lint didn't get to see anything other than screen mirroring (from an Android tablet) in action, but we have been told that it should support media streaming over DLNA, has DTS and Dolby Digital audio decoding, will have video calling abilities, and can be controlled through an app on Android devices.
Pocket-lint has also been told that Huawei is currently working on iPhone and iPad support, as "there are plenty of users of those devices". It is not known whether it will work in time for launch, or whether it will just be Android compatible at that time, but it's a step up from the Samsung HomeSync which will be Android only, full stop.
The device has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, and we will be able to bring you more on the MediaQ when we review the product back in London in the near future.
As for price, we don't know anything yet. However, popular rumour previously suggested that it could be below the £100 mark. And that seems like great value to us.