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Huawei tests 5G downloads in China as government due to issue licenses

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Chinese technology giant Huawei has tested the 5G download on its upcoming foldable phone, the Mate X, after the Chinese government announced that it will soon release 5G licenses nationwide, which is believed to largely benefit local telecom equipment vendors including Huawei and ZTE.

The download rate through a 5G network has exceeded 1Gbps on the latest Huawei handset. He Gang, head of Huawei’s smartphone division, carried out the test at Huawei Shanghai Research Institute, a video shared by the company on Tuesday shows.

Huawei’s Mate X, which supports the auto switch of 2G, 3G, 4G, and 5G networks, could achieve downstream speed of 1Gbps and upstream speed of close to 100 Mpbs, according to the demo.

The test came a day after the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology announced that it will “soon grant 5G licenses for commercial use” on Monday.

The country’s telecoms regulator did not unveil any details apart from the one-line announcement. The market generally expects that the three largest telecom operators of the country, China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom, will give out most their contracts for building up local 5G networks to the two local telecoms equipment giants, Huawei and ZTE.

Also: US-China tariffs hit Taiwanese tech industry

“We are looking forward to the commercialization of 5G networks and Mate X, which will allow users to experience good products and networks,” Huawei’s consumer business group head Richard Yu said on his Weibo account on Tuesday, commenting on the 5G demo. 

Huawei, which showcased its Mate X during MWC in Barcelona earlier this year, is scheduled to ship the foldable product this month as planned, the company told media in April, after Samsung postponed the shipment of Galaxy Fold due to serious problems with the screens.

Huawei’s Mate X is equipped with the world’s first 7nm 5G multi-mode modem chipset Balong 5000 which could support “unprecedented 5G download speeds”, Huawei said in a press release.

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Hyperion XP-1 hydrogen supercar has landed in Las Vegas

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The Hyperion XP-1, touted as the world’s first hydrogen fuel cell supercar, has recently landed in Las Vegas to the delight of onlookers, residents, and motorists alike. However, it came to celebrate the first virtual CES 2021 instead of attempting to break the speed barrier.

The last time a supercar went to Vegas (and attempted a speed record run), it drew a ton of controversy. We’re talking about the SSC Tuatara, and it’s claimed two-way average run of 316.11 mph (508.73 kph) last October.

Meanwhile, Hyperion is taking it easy with its newest XP-1 supercar. Instead of ringing out every last ounce of power from its hydrogen fuel cells, the car was seen gallantly cruising past the historic Fountains of Bellagio and the Nevada desert.

It’s hard to believe the Hyperion XP-1 started life as an educational tool. The car is wearing some funky camouflage in the video, but we’ve all seen the XP-1 sans its vinyl covering. It has a carbon monocoque frame with titanium-infused body panels to reduce weight. And since it has no battery pack, the XP-1 tips the scales at 2,275 pounds (1,248 kg), which is around 475 pounds less than SSC’s Tuatara.

The XP-1 has carbon-fiber tanks to store hydrogen, and the entire fuel cell supplies power to four electric motors, one for each wheel. Each motor pumps out 500 horsepower for a total output of 2,000 rampaging horses. With that much power, the XP-1 is a scorcher. It accelerates from zero to 60 mph in under 3.0-seconds and has a top speed of 221 mph.

When you run out of juice, the XP-1 is as easy to fill up as a gasoline-powered car, provided there’s a hydrogen refilling station nearby. With a full tank (or full tanks) of hydrogen, the XP-1 achieves 1,016 miles (1,635 kilometers) of driving range. Theoretically, the XP-1 can probably go longer than that with its array of solar panels on the sweeping C-section behind the doors.

The Hyperion XP-1 is slated to go on sale in late 2022, with the first customer deliveries arriving in early 2023. The company is only making 300 examples of the XP-1 at a still undetermined base price.

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Rumor claims upcoming Toyota GR Corolla won’t use hybrid power

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Rumors have been swelling that Toyota is looking to add another hopped up compact car to its GR line of sports cars. Americans can’t get the cool GR Yaris, which we are rather bummed about. Rumor has suggested that Toyota will launch a GR Corolla sometime in 2023. Toyota has filed a trademark for the GR Corolla name, and insiders claim the car is definitely coming.

However, rumors suggest that the GR Corolla won’t use electrification. Odds are, the Corolla would use the same engine as the GR Yaris, which Toyota reportedly spent significant sums of money developing. The GR Corolla is expected to use the same platform as the GR Yaris, which would mean 257 horsepower and all-wheel-drive with rear-biased torque.

Pricing is a bit of a mystery as rumor sources haven’t shed any light on that front. It would undoubtedly cost more than the GR Yaris, priced in Europe at £33,000 for starters. The assumption would be a GR Corolla would be priced on par with rivals like the Golf R.

We’d love to think that Toyota’s need to recoup its development costs on the turbo three-cylinder engine used in the GR Yaris would mean the car would eventually come to the United States. There is no indication of that, and odds are American buyers may not want to spend what Toyota would try and charge for the car stateside.

We believe there is certainly a market left for hot hatchbacks and sporty cars in the United States. We love to see the segment make a comeback. It is also nice to hear that Toyota still plans to use non-electrified power plants in its performance cars for now. Many automakers are moving towards less powerful combustion engines supplemented by electric systems.

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BMW ends its car subscription program

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For a while, it seemed as if the future of owning an automobile would be a subscription where you paid an ongoing monthly fee and had access to multiple car models from a single brand. Subscription programs were available from BMW, Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and others for a while. BMW recently announced that it was canceling its subscription service that began in 2018 in Nashville, Tennessee.

The subscription service cost more than $2000 per month and allowed subscribers to access different BMW vehicle models depending on their needs or wants at the time. We have to think the high price was part of the reason the service didn’t work. As for why it’s ending the subscription service, BMW has said that the program reached its capacity limits.

The service, called Access by BMW, never shared subscriber numbers, so it’s unclear how many people subscribed. BMW also says that Access by BMW was never intended to be more than a pilot. There were two tiers to the service, with entry-level users paying $2000 per month to use the X5 SUV and 4 or 5-series sedans.

Those wanting access to the exciting BMW vehicles had to pay $3700 per month. Those subscribers had access to the M4, M5, M6, and X5M. While many automakers are canceling their car subscription programs, Porsche is doing very well with its subscription service. Porsche caters to a more enthusiastic crowd than some luxury brands, which could add to its success.

Mainstream automakers, including Ford, also tried a subscription service, but Ford sold its service in 2019. Audi announced earlier this month that it was also ending its subscription service by the end of January. Audi has promised to create a new innovative experience for customers based on insights gained from its subscription service.

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