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Huawei P9 “Leica” cameras aren’t actually made by Leica (Updated with response)

by Jacob Kleinman | April 20, 2016April 20, 2016 10:40 am PST

Huawei’s new flagship duo, the P9 and P9 Plus, ships with “Leica dual lenses,” according to the company’s marketing materials. However, it turns out the storied German camera maker may not have had much involvement with the creation of Huawei’s new smartphones at all.

MyDrivers reports that the cameras were actually engineered by Sunny Optics, a Chinese firm that dominates that mobile photography market. It wasn’t until after development was finished that Huawei turned to Leica for its certification. That branding is really just a bit of clever marketing for the Chinese company.

Regardless of where the P9’s cameras come from, the device reportedly takes excellent photos. We haven’t had a chance to try the phone out for ourselves just yet, but multiple reports claim the dual lens setup works like a charm. We understand why Huawei would want to borrow Leica’s brand for a bit of extra publicity but, if customers realize they’ve been tricked, that decision may end up backfiring.

Update: Huawei reached out to use with a correction, noting that Leica was involved throughout the entire process and helped co-engineer the P9’s mobile camera array. Here’s the company’s full statement:

The P9 and P9 Plus were co-engineered between Huawei and Leica. This is the first collaboration between the two companies following a long-term partnership that was announced in February. From the very beginning, Leica has been deeply involved in the development of these devices. There has been significant technological collaboration between Huawei and Leica around many aspects of the camera, including optical design, imaging quality, image data processing, optimization, and the mechanical construction of the camera module to the graphic user interface. The devices meet Leica’s highest imaging quality standards.

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Jacob Kleinman

Jacob Kleinman has been working as a journalist online and in print since he arrived at Wesleyan University in 2007. After graduating, he took a...