Update: Added in a statement from Huawei.
Yesterday, Huawei released a bunch of promo images highlighting the brilliance of the upcoming P30 camera. But most outlets – including us – were sceptical that the images could have been taken on a smartphone.
It turns out that scepticism was entirely warranted. Not only were the pictures taken on DSLR rather than the P30, Gadgetmatch spotted that one of them – an incredible shot of a volcano erupting – is a decade old. You can buy and download it right now from Getty Images.
Another image from the collection – a young child reaching out to stroke a duck – looks like it’s come straight from this photographer’s portfolio.
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To make matters worse, this isn’t the first time that Huawei has been caught out implying that DSLR camera shots are taken on their products. A selfie supposedly taken by the Nova 3 smartphone last August was later shown to be done via DSLR.
“We’ve been made aware that there might have been some misunderstanding regarding our recent HUAWEI P30 Series teaser posters,” Huawei said in statement. “We would like to reiterate that those are, in fact, only teaser posters, and are only intended to hint at the unique new features that will come with the HUAWEI P30 Series.
“Huawei has acquired the licenses to the original images and the posters are artistic renditions of said features only.”
Huawei has updated the images on the Weibo post with a small disclaimer added to the bottom-left corner of the photos. The text now explains that they are creative adverts only intended for reference.
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It’s unfortunate that Huawei didn’t take this modest step in the first place. People understand that adverts aren’t always wholly representative of the finished product, and it’s not unreasonable for a company to use stock imagery to illustrate a feature. But by not being upfront about it, Huawei may well end up drawing attention away from the P30’s best new feature – no matter how brilliant it ends up being.
Should phone companies only use photos shot on their devices in adverts? Let us know what you think on Twitter: @TrustedReviews.