Huawei phone
An exhibitor takes a photo with a Huawei phone during the 2018 CES in Las Vegas Steve Marcus/Reuters

Huawei's e-brand Honor has started selling the View 10 smartphones in select countries, and at its mid-range price point, critics have been impressed so far by its capabilities powered by artificial intelligence. Making a major appearance on the day before the Consumer Electronics Show 2018 in Las Vegas, the handset device boasts promising features that can be found only in premium high-end devices.

The Honor View 10 is now out in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain with a base price at around US$460. The phone sports a 5.99-inch LTPS IPS LCD touchscreen, and a Neural-Network Processing Unit (NPU) is integrated into its Kirin 970 processor to deliver AI features and performance, exceeding any CPU/GPU powered architecture by a mile.

Also read: Huawei Mate 10 Pro heads to US in February for $799

The advanced Kirin chip enables the phone to perform up to 25 times faster and better and 50 times greater efficiency, says Honor in a statement. The company worked closely with Microsoft, Monster and Snapchat to optimize applications and services for its smartphones.

One significant improvement brought by the partnership is the optimisation of the Microsoft Translator for Honor View 10. It is said to deliver instantaneous translation without the need for an internet connection, but with the NPU, it "makes the translation 500 percent faster than other smartphones running the same app".

"Microsoft is thrilled to be collaborating with Honor to bring the benefits of AI, through Microsoft Translator, to more users through the Honor View10. Together, we will continue to work towards building a more integrated and connected world," says Xuedong Huang, Microsoft Technical Fellow in AI and Research.

The Honor View 10 will be available in Malaysia and Russia later in the month.