Smartphone shipments surged to a record high in the third quarter, but Apple continued to lose ground as lower-cost devices proliferate in emerging markets. Research firm Strategy Analytics on Monday evening issued its smartphone figures for the third quarter, suggesting that total global shipments jumped 45% annually in Q3 to a record 251 million units, topping a quarter-billion for the first time ever. That monstrous figure was driven largely by Samsung, which shipped an estimated 88.4 million smartphones, up from 56.9 million units in the third quarter last year, to capture a record 35% of the global market. According to Strategy Analytics’ numbers, Samsung now ships nearly 1 million smartphones each day. More →
Huawei has once again denied that it’s in the SpyPhone business. Per The Guardian, Huawei recently wrote a cybersecurity paper in which it said that it has never been ordered by the Chinese government to use its smartphones or telecom equipment to spy on customers. Huawei’s statement comes at a time when it’s been labeled a security risk by the American government for its alleged ties to the Chinese government. Of course, Huawei isn’t the only major tech company that’s had its reputation damaged by allegations of colluding with its government to spy on customers, as Microsoft, Google, Facebook and other American tech giants have been scrambling to reassure their customers that they aren’t being spied upon by the National Security Agency.
After Microsoft picked up Nokia’s handset business in a deal worth $7.2 billion, some observers believed that other third-party manufacturers would flee the Windows Phone platform. But The Wall Street Journal reports that Chinese manufacturer Huawei, which has risen to become one of the top smartphone OEMs in the world, has no plans to abandon Windows Phone 8 anytime soon. Richard Ren, the head of Huawei’s European consumer division, told reporters on Thursday that his company remains one of Microsoft’s strategic partners and that it would not go exclusively with free-to-use platforms such as Android and Firefox OS. The Journal notes, however, that Windows Phone devices represent a relatively smaller percentage of Huawei’s overall handset shipments.
Samsung shot to the top of the market in China and it is currently the No.1 smartphone vendor there by a wide margin in terms of shipment volume. But in a recent research note to clients, Wedge Partners analyst Jun Zhang wrote that things are changing rapidly in China and local brands will soon drive Samsung out of the top spot in this crucial market. “In China, a $300-$400 price range is considered the middle-range smartphone market, compared with the high-end market segment which is dominated by Apple, Samsung, Sony and other foreign brands,” Zhang wrote. “Local brands such as Xiaomi, Lenovo, Huawei, ZTE, Coolpad, Meizu, Vivo, etc. view this segment as their high-end smartphone segment, compared with Apple’s and Samsung’s flagship products retail price above $700.” More →
There may be a savior company out there that will bail out BlackBerry but it apparently won’t be Huawei. In an interview with Reuters, Huawei board member Chen Lifang said that her company has no interest in buying BlackBerry or any other smartphone company because “we want to rely on ourselves.” A Huawei-BlackBerry merger was always unlikely because the United States and Canada would have serious concerns about letting a company with significant mobile security infrastructure get bought out by a firm that has alleged ties to the Chinese military. The Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday that BlackBerry has been in discussions with a number of suitors about a potential sale and that it wants to complete a deal to sell off the company by November.
Huawei on Tuesday announced the hiring of Colin Giles as the company’s new executive vice president for its consumer business group. Giles was formerly with Nokia for more than 20 years and was instrumental in the company’s expansion into China and other Asian markets. Most recently, he was the head of sales for Nokia, however he resigned in 2012 as Lumia sales continued to slump. With Huawei, Giles will be in charge of global marketing, retail and open channel development. The executive’s biggest challenge will be Huawei’s continuing effort to grow its market share in Western countries. The company’s press release follows below. More →
Huawei has confirmed that it is collaborating with Google to join the likes of Samsung and HTC and produce a stock Android smartphone that will be sold in the Google Play store. Kevin Ho, president of the Huawei’s handset product division, revealed in an interview with Pocket-lint that the company is “working with Google to analyse the possibility” of producing a Google Edition version of its incredibly thin Ascend P6 smartphone. The device measures a mere 6.2 millimeters thick and is equipped with a 4.7-inch 720p display, an in-house 1.5GHz quad-core processor and an 8-megapixel rear camera. The P6 also includes 2GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage, a microSD slot, a 5-megapixel front-facing camera and a 2,000 mAh battery.
Huawei’s chief executive Richard Yu apparently isn’t afraid to call out larger rivals as he dealt jabs to both Apple and Samsung in a recent interview with The Telegraph. While speaking about his company’s new Ascend P6, the world’s slimmest smartphone, Yu made sure to note the new handset’s superior build quality compared to the Galaxy S4. “We’re not made of plastic,” the CEO said. He continued, “Samsung, they have such huge money – if you invest in marketing and branding then people will always buy no matter how good the products are. The Samsung Galaxy S4 is just a so-so smartphone.” And when it came to Apple, the Huawei chief didn’t pull any punches there either. “In its latest update, Apple makes the phone extremely simple to use,” Yu said. “But if we are just learning from them we can’t catch up, because they are now slipping. We want to go higher than them.”
In its latest attempt to blur the lines between smartphones and tablets, Huawei on Monday announced a new 7-inch Android device that can make phone calls. The MediaPad 7 Vogue is equipped with a 7-inch 1,024 x 600-pixel display, an in-house 1.2GHz quad-core processor and a 3-megapixel rear camera. The tablet also includes 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage, a microSD slot, a 4,100 mAh battery and Huawei’s Emotion user interface atop Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. The MediaPad 7 will be available in a Wi-Fi only model or an HSPA+ model that is capable of making phone calls, a feature that similarly puzzled us in Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8. The slate will arrive in China later this month with expanded availability scheduled for the coming months. Huawei’s press release follows below. More →
While Sony’s smartphone business has been struggling for some time now, it is a company known for building HDTVs and mobile devices with stunning displays that are among the best on the market. HTC is struggling as well, but its smartphone hardware is always among the best in the world and that includes its stunning HD displays. With that in mind, it’s quite surprising that up-and-comer Huawei trounced flagship smartphone models from both major brands in DisplayMate’s latest full HD smartphone display shootout, which was published this week. The site says Huawei’s Ascend D2 “delivers superior picture quality with accurate colors and images” compared to the HTC One and Sony Xperia Z, but that’s just a small part of the story. The full exhaustive shootout can be read on DisplayMate’s site, which is linked below.
Huawei on Tuesday announced the Ascend P6, the world’s thinnest smartphone. The handset measures a mere 6.18 millimeters thick and weighs 120 grams, eight grams more than Apple’s iPhone 5 despite the fact that the phone is much larger. The Ascend P6 is equipped with a 4.7-inch 720p display, an in-house 1.5GHz quad-core processor and an 8-megapixel rear camera. The smartphone also includes a 5-megapixel front-facing camera, 2GB of RAM, a 2,000 mAh battery, 8GB of internal storage, a microSD slot and Huawei’s Emotion user interface atop Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. The Ascend P6 will be available in black, white and pink in China later this month and it will launch on Vodafone, O2 and Orange in Europe in July. Huawei’s press release follows below. More →
Shares of Nokia surged on Tuesday, mostly because Chinese electronics giant Huawei expressed interest in buying the struggling Finnish smartphone manufacturer. Richard Yu, chairman of Huawei’s consumer business group, told The Financial Times that his company would be open to buying Nokia if it showed a “willingness” to merge. One aspect of Nokia’s current business plan that it will certainly have to rethink if it wants to merge with Huawei is its exclusive use of Windows Phone as its platform of choice. Yu said that Windows Phone was still a risky bet because its market share has not significantly grown in the eight months since the launch of Windows Phone 8. More →
Huawei founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei made a rare public appearance on Thursday to deny allegations that his company’s telecommunications equipment poses a threat to U.S. national security. According to Reuters, it was the first time in more than 25 years that the executive has spoken with the media. It has been alleged that Huawei is in cahoots with the Chinese government, which has left countries such as the U.S., Canada and Australia hesitant to use the company’s equipment. More →