Since the U.S. ban on American companies doing business with Huawei is still in place and may not be going away anytime soon, the newly-launched devices don’t have Google Mobile Services, including Google Assistant. So now is the perfect time to launch something they’ve been working on to fill that gap. Celia is the global version of their own personal assistant in China (called Xiaoyi) and should be available in the Huawei P40 series in the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Chile, Mexico, and Colombia.
Celia was actually mentioned last year but is now just rolling out and pre-loaded in the new P40 series. It is also expected to roll out to other Huawei devices though there’s no announcement yet for that. The trigger phrase to launch it is “Hey Celia” but you can also press and hold down the power button for one second to bring it up. The default search engine for it seems to vary per country but hopefully, you can also choose which one you would prefer.
Celia is able to do a lot of things, at least according to Huawei’s official website. It does all of the usual digital assistant things like make calls, send text messages, set reminders and appointments, play music, podcasts, or audiobooks, give you weather updates and traffic conditions, etc. It can also translate menus, do face to face translations, take photos for you, and other useful things for when you’re traveling.
It also has AI features similar to Google Lens, like telling you where you can buy the item you point your camera at or similar items to it that you can purchase. You an also point it an apple and it will tell you how many calories that is. It may probably not be as advance as Google’s or Samsung’s but with constant improvement, it may reach that level or maybe even surpass it.
Huawei’s Celia digital assistant supports English, French, and Spanish but they will eventually add more languages too. It will also be added to other Huawei products like speakers, TVs, etc, although that may be later in the year.