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HUAWEI talks of company highlights and desire for US success

Though a major global player, HUAWEI hasn't been able to crack the mainstream US market. In a recent WSJ interview the SVP offers a look at what's going on.

Published onNovember 3, 2014


Although Huawei may be one of China’s most prominent companies, its devices and products are largely unknown to mainstream customers in North America. Allegations of spyware have muddled its potential success, and a recent refusal to update a newer smartphone to KitKat certainly isn’t going to win any brownie points.

Still, when The Wall Street Journal sat down to chat with the giant’s Senior Vice President, Chen Lifang, it became clear that this is one company that isn’t prepared to take matters lying down. From the interview, several key points were raised:

1. 65% of HUAWEI’s revenue is non domestic (Chinese). This is of particular interest in that, much as with several big name video game companies and OEMs, their main market is actually foreign customers. Quite literally, HUAWEI’s current success is severely limited by its stymied market penetration in the USA.

HUAWEI Ascend Mate 7 Beautiful

2. In the past 10 years, HUAWEI has invested $25 billion in R&D. This is an astounding figure, and offers not only a window into how large the company really is, but also its commitment to success. As Q3 results hit investor portfolios like a ton of bricks, budgets are only going to be tightened and so a company like this, with so much capital to invest, is in a very good position.

3. Despite the 2012 U.S. government report urging domestic companies to avoid HUAWEI, Lifang says not a shred of proof has been offered to back up the allegation. She reinforces this by saying the Chinese government is not tampering with any security related things, and that the US and UK governments must test their products before approving their sale, thus any fishy business would be discovered.

4. She then continues to offer an impressive statistic: Three (3) billion customers around the world make use of HUAWEI products or services; that’s a mighty big number. It would be of particular interest to know how many customers America’s darling Apple currently has, though to be fair the scope of each company is a bit different.

huawei ascend mate 7 unboxing initial setup aa (8 of 20)

5. The company recognizes its difficulties in the US market and more commitment to success is needed in order to achieve any sort of mainstream success. Given the aforementioned R&D budget, it’s pretty safe to say that it will happen sooner or later, probably the former given the increasing degree of US market penetration for Chinese mobile tech.

So there you have it: One of the largest tech companies is confident, comprehensive, and committed. It’s worth noting that as smartphones move closer to becoming commodities, OEM’s need to step up their game if they want to capitalize on the current profit margins associated with them. Then again, with a company as large as HUAWEI, this can be solved by sheer numbers, and it seems quite obvious it already has some impressive ones.

An excerpt of the full interview, as well as an embedded video (with translation) can be found on The Wall Street Journal via the source link below.

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