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(Pocket-lint) - Huawei has announced its new flagship smartphone, the Huawei P8 at its launch event in London.

The handset follows-on from the P7, dropping the Ascend branding in the process, and is the company's quality alternative to some of the biggest players in the market. It's just 6.4mm thick, making it slimmer than the iPhone 6, and has a metal unibody design which also draws comparisons with the Apple device.

The Huawei P8 comes with a 5.2-inch display, offering a 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution, 424ppi. It's a 4G phone that's capable of running dual SIM cards. And it is powered by an 2GHz octa-core 64-bit Kirin 930 processor with 3GB of RAM.

It comes with 16GB of storage space on board, with one of the two SIM card slot doubling as a microSD card slot for expansion. And Android 5.0 Lollipop comes pre-installed.

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There's also an intelligent audio processor (Hi 6402). And the camera has a 13-megapixel sensor but with four-colour RGBW imaging. There is also optical image stabilisation on board.

Huawei has also added a proprietary new Light Painting feature where you can wave the handset in the air to sketch light tracks. This creates motion blur style effects with light at night time.

Pocket-linthuawei p8 is here 5 2 inch full hd screen octa core cpu and just 6 4mm thick image 2

The phone is also capable of 1080p video recording and playback, but a director mode adds the ability to control different camera angles for editing later.

There are also other photography modes, including a perfect selfie feature to highlight and touch up your portraits automatically, time lapse and dedicated low light shooting abilities.

The front camera is 8-megapixels.

The Huawei P8 has a 2,680mAh battery and there will be two models available - in standard or premium - and in multiple colours, including mystic champagne and titanium grey. It will be available in 30 countries on the initial release - the date of which is yet to be confirmed - and the two devices will cost 499 euros (£358) and 599 euros (£430) respectively.

A range of accessories will also be released, including a case with an E Ink rear that can turn the back of the phone into an eBook reader, much like the Russian YotaPhone.

Writing by Rik Henderson.