Huawei has just released some of their numbers for the first half of 2014. Smartphones only account for about half of Huawei’s global business, but business is good, reporting a 62% year-on-year increase in phone shipments, bringing them to 34.27 million units shipped.
Huawei’s total global business division shipped 64.21 million devices, including phones, mobile hotspots and more for the first half 2014.
In explaining the numbers, Huawei attributes a number of factors for their growth, starting, of course, with the success of their latest flagship Android smartphones, the Huawei Mate 2 4G and the Ascend P7. After launching in France in May, the Ascend P7 has sold nearly 1 million units per month.
The Huawei Ascend P7 is a 5-inch device with a quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM. 16GB of internal storage is backed up by a microSD card slot, which is perfect for storing all the selfies you might take using the 8MP front camera. When our Joshua Vergera reviewed the Ascend P7 in June, he found the device to be a solid performer, but it lacked a wow factor, something exaggerated by the underwhelming performance of its 13MP main camera.
Unlike the premium status of the Ascend P7, the Huawei Ascend Mate 2 looks to tackle the mid-range market in a big way. A Snapdragon 400 processor and 2GB of RAM are a good start. Settings itself apart from the crowd are a whopping 6.1-inch display and a wide-angle 5MP front camera, designed for what Huawei is terming the groufie. Yes, a groufie is a wide angle shot that lets your friends get in on your selfies. Love it or hate it, these features help the Ascend Mate 2 stand out in a crowd.
If you were wondering where Huawei is getting most of its smartphone business, look no further than Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa. Certainly, these are larger markets, but they combined for 85 percent growth in Q2 alone, shipping just over 20 million smartphones.
We’ve been seeing Chinese smartphone manufacturers on track for some big things in 2014. Companies like Xiaomi have expanded to many new markets, most recently India, and the new kid on the block, OnePlus, still has customers vying for invitations to purchase their flagship killer OnePlus One. Comparatively, Huawei is a little more established around the globe and will remain on our radar of companies to watch in the world of Android devices.
Huawei Consumer Business Group Announces
H1 2014 Business Performance
Impressive growth of 62% smartphone shipments YOY with total consumer device shipment of 64.21 million
[Shenzhen, China, July 29, 2014] Huawei, a leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider, today announced the business performance of its Consumer Business Group (BG) for the first half of 2014. During this period, Huawei shipped a total of 64.21 million devices. Smartphones accounted for 34.27 million units, showing an impressive year-on-year increase of 62%. This growth also reflected the success of the launch of several flagship premium smartphones such as the Huawei Mate 2 4G and Ascend P7 which are gaining popularity amongst consumers worldwide. Huawei Consumer BG’s steady and sustainable business growth further demonstrates the success of its strategy to develop premium quality products while building brand awareness through global marketing initiatives.
Success of Premium Product Strategy
In H1 2014, Huawei introduced a strong suite of 4G LTE-enabled premium smartphones including Ascend Mate 2 4G, Ascend G6, and most recently, the highly anticipated Ascend P7. Launched on May 7, 2014, in Paris, France, and building on the success of Ascend P6, the new P7 was touted by the industry as a “selfie smartphone” as it redefines smartphone excellence with a 5-inch full high definition display, industry-leading 8MP front-facing and 13MP rear-facing cameras. In addition, wireless performance tests conducted by several major operators in Europe confirmed that the Huawei Ascend P7 tops the list of the premium smartphone brands currently in the market. Less than two months after its global launch, nearly 2 million units of the P7 were sold in 70 markets in Europe, Asia-Pacific, the Middle-East, Africa and Latin America. Meanwhile the Ascend Mate 2 4G, also launched in H1 2014, achieved popularity in markets such as China, Europe, Southeast Asia, and North America. The impressive sales results of both the Ascend P7 and Mate 2 4G demonstrate Huawei’s success in the mid-to high-end market.
Increasing Brand Awareness
Huawei continues to build on the momentum to become a global brand that is loved by consumers through a comprehensive branding and marketing program that includes advertising, sports sponsorship, industry events, product launches, in-store and online promotions. In particular, Huawei intensified sponsorship activities with leading sports organizations such as AC Milan, Borussia Dortmund, Paris Saint-Germain and Arsenal Football Club, and this contributed significantly to the increase ofHuawei’s brand awareness in Europe and around the world. In the Netherlands, Huawei’s sponsorship of the Amsterdamsche Football Club Ajax formalized in May this year has contributed to the rapid growth of its smartphone share in the market.
Rapid Growth in Overseas Market
Huawei’s performance over the past six months was fuelled largely by the tremendous growth in overseas markets where Huawei intensified global marketing initiatives. In Q2 2014 alone, Huawei shipped a total of 20.56 million smartphones to markets in Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa, an increase of 85% compared to last year. Huawei’s commitment to branding efforts in these markets contributed to the impressive shipment growth results of 550% in the Middle East and Africa, 275% in Latin America, 180% in Asia-Pacific and 120% in Europe. Huawei also held majority smartphone market share in selected markets in Asia and Latin America.
According to research from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, in the past 12 months Huawei’s smartphone sales increased 123% in five major European markets, including the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy and Spain. Huawei currently holds 3% market share in Germany and Spain, and aims to increase this to 5% in the near future. “Across Europe there is an accelerating trend of fragmentation in the handset market as smaller brands gain real traction,” said Dominic Sunnebo, Strategic Insight Director, Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. “…Newcomers to the European market such as Huawei…are challenging the established names.”
In the second half of the year, Huawei Consumer BG will continue to commit to the development of the 4G LTE market, designing and developing innovative technologies for its range of consumer devices. In addition to further enhancing collaboration with telecommunication carriers, open market and online sales channels, it aims to put more new premium mid- to high-end flagship 4G LTE-enabled smart devices and wearables into the hands of consumers worldwide.
About Huawei Consumer Business Group
As at the end of 2013, Huawei’s products and services are deployed in over 170 countries, serving more than one third of the world’s population. Huawei ranked third in global smartphone shipments in 2013. Huawei has also established more than 16 R&D centers around the world in countries such as the United States, Germany, Sweden, Russia, India, and China. One of Huawei’s three business groups, Huawei Consumer Business Group (BG) provides a range of products including mobile phones, mobile broadband (MBB) devices, home devices and cloud services. With more than 20 years of rich business expertise in the information and communications technology (ICT) sector, an extensive global network, vast global business operations and partners, Huawei Consumer BG is dedicated to bringing the latest technology to consumers, offering a world of possibilities and creating extraordinary experiences for people everywhere.