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Hands-on With the World's Fastest Smartphone, The Huawei Ascend D Quad

Huawei has debuted a monster of a smartphone here at Mobile World Congress, the 1.5-Ghz quad-core-powered, Ascend D quad. Huawei calls the processor its K3V2 and, in addition to sporting four CPU cores, it also packs 16 GPU cores, giving it that extra oomph needed to handle today’s demanding 3D games. Even more impressive is that the K3V2 is a 64-bit processor, rather than the standard 32-bit offered in other phones. Huawei said it developed the processor in-house with a partner company, but was coy about naming which company it was.

We spent some hands-on time with the Ascend D quad and can certainly attest to its speed. Swiping through menus was fast and fluid without a hint of lag. In our hands the 0.35-inch thick Ascend D quad felt solid. It has a thin rubberized texture on the back that helps make it feel more secure while holding.

During one demonstration we watched as the Ascend D quad streamed Transformers: The Dark of The Moon in crisp HD quality over its HDMI cable to a large roughly 60-inch display. In another booth we played Samurai II: Vengence and were impressed with how smoothly the Ascend D quad was able to render the game's manga-style 3D world.

Beyond its processor, the Android 4.0 ice Cream Sandwich-powered Ascend D quad features a 4.5-inch 1280 x 720 display, Dolby Digital + 5.1 surround sound, 1GB of RAM and 8GB of onboard storage.

Giving the Ascend D quad life is an 1800mAh battery that, combined with low-power consumption technology, Huawei says will last for one to two days of regular use. In fact, Huawei claims its battery technology gives the Ascend D quad up to 30 percent better battery life than the competition. Better still, Huawei is also offering an Ascend D quad XL with a 2500mAh will last for two to three days of regular use.

As expected, the The Ascend D quad XL is slightly larger than the standard model, 0.4 inches versus 0.35. Huawei says the difference in weight between the two models will be less than roughly 0.7 ounces. And with the XL model weighing in at 4.6 ounces, you can expect the Ascend D quad to weigh in at around 3.9 ounces.

Huawei says the device will be available  globally, including North America, in Q2 2012 as an HSPA+ model. A 4G LTE model is expected to follow towards the end of Summer 2012. Pricing and carrier partners have yet to be announced.