Virtually unknown in the United States and Europe until last year, Huawei has certainly stepped up its game lately, announcing the release of the world’s thinnest smartphone, the Ascend P1 S and the most powerful handheld worldwide, the Ascend D Quad, powered by the company’s own quad-core processor.
However, the Chinese electronics company seems to really be aiming high (and wide), with recent research and development concentrated on touch-free technology. “We are focused on disruptive technology and taking interesting ideas and turning them into something exciting.” said John Roese, general manager for Huawei’s North American research and development center a few days ago.
Roese also revealed that Huawei has spent no less than $3.76 billion on R&D last year and plans to spend even more this year. A total $4.5 billion have been allocated for the company’s research department from January to the end of 2012, meaning that these guys are really up to something good.
Huawei might be a pioneer in the smartphone world if it manages to come up with a device supporting some kind of gesture recognition similar to the Xbox 360 Kinect motion sensing, which could be a huge step forward for the entire Android market. Sony has already announced the Xperia Sola, a smartphone with a “floating” screen that can read finger gestures to highlight links in text, but this is still a fairly rudimentary device in terms of what motion sensing could potentially do for mobile phone users.
“Imagine instead of touching a smartphone, you can actually have a three-dimensional interaction with it.” said John Roese during a press conference on Friday, teasing us by painting an image that has surely made us all dream before. He failed to reveal any specific details about the company’s actual research and future plans.
Aside from touch-free technology, Huawei is also planning to enter the cloud storage business, where it hopes to offer users more space for a better price. The Chinese company has reportedly signed a partnership with CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, and is currently investigating new storage techniques to allow them to offer people “infinite backup” and only charge them when they needed to restore it.
While this all might sound too good to be true, it still demonstrates that we should all take Huawei more seriously. We will surely be keeping an eye on Huawei in the near future. What about you? Do you think that the Chinese have what it takes to enter so many markets and verticals to become truly successful in all (or any) of them? What about touch-free smartphones? Is that a feature you would appreciate to have? As always, we’d love to hear what you have to say, so let us know below!