back to article MWC 2013: The Chinese are coming - and you ain't seen nothing yet

When the signs at an international trade event are in Chinese first, you know things have changed. This was only true of the photocopied signs posted all around Hall One at this year's Mobile World Congress, home to the giant Huawei hospitality booth - but expect to it spread. The Chinese have barely got started. "Why are we …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not really going to take on ALL the world....

    ...USA paranoia / FUD / protectionism* will help kill that market.

    *Delete as appropriate.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not really going to take on ALL the world....

      Huawei have he rights to run iOS as well as Windows, Android. Don't know about Blackberry..

      1. John Hughes

        Huawei have he rights to run iOS

        RU Sure? Got a source for that?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Price Ideas?

    If they are gonna pitch at Apple prices, the battle is settled. People will buy Appl e instead.

    If they pitch low & Realistic (£250 being the sweet spot) , the operators are going to have their margins and pound of flesh. So nothing below £400 levels?

    Look what they did to Google Nexus 4.

    Unles they embark on a marketing blitz and bamboozle smaller players.

    1. Mark .

      Re: Price Ideas?

      "If they are gonna pitch at Apple prices, the battle is settled. People will buy Appl e instead."

      Not really true, plenty of people buy high end Android phones, whilst plenty of Apple phone sales are made up of older iphones. Even at a high price, I'd bet Andoid still comes first.

      And when you look at the specs - 5" screens, full HD, maps that work - why not? The iphone 5 just brought it in line with Android phones 18 months earlier.

      Bigger competition is likely Samsung, who produce similar high end Android phones, but seem to be a lot more well known than Huawei.

      Though yes, it's frustrating to see what's happened to the Nexus 4.

      1. Dave 126 Silver badge

        Re: Price Ideas?

        A bigger screen only for makes a better phone if that's what the individual user

        prefers. Choice is good, though.

        Didn't that big tease Google announce they would release GoogleMaps for iOS after all? And didn't Nokia say they were going to do the same with their well regarded map product? Just saying.

      2. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

        Re: Price Ideas?

        Not everyone wants a 5in brick as their phone you know.

        Even my old (and now disused) HTC Sensation was too big for me and I have hands the size of dinner plates.

        No one USP will satisfy ALL of the market. What might be essential for one person is a big 'no-no' for another.

        NFC and 5in screens are big turn offs for me but there again, I'm a grumpy old man and not a hip young thing that needs to be seen with the latest 'shiny shiny' toy.

  3. Daemon Byte

    Huawei are definitely an up and coming company in the consumer market but they still have to make it easier for the uninitiated. I have had their media pad tablet for at least a year now and it was a decent bit of kit that easily competed with the samsung galaxy but for half the price. Small snag is when I want to update the firmware (and I had to since the first few were very buggy) it meant going to the website, downloading the file, putting it onto an sd card, booting up, installing, clearing sd card and then reinstalling every app and setting I had. Compare that to HTC's notification on the phone, download, reboot done. But I think it will come and then the big boys will have to watch out. At least the US has already prepared: Ban that awesome phone from the US because it's Chinese spy tech!

    1. Magister

      @Daemon Byte

      Have to agree with your comments. I bought one of their small mobile phone handsets; really good price and it looked as if it would just what I needed.

      But it was very buggy; lots of issues with the touch screen and some of the apps were very flaky, working well one minute and then suddenly falling over. The battery life was good and the call quality wasn't too bad, but after trying to use it for about 5 months, I finally gave up.

      Would I buy another one? Not too sure. Having had such a series of issues once, it makes you wary of trusting them for a second bite of the cherry. The only real advantage was that it was cheap enough that I didn't feel too bad about sending it off to a recycling firm.

    2. Justice
      Thumb Up

      Huawei are pretty good in my books. Got 2x Ascend G300 for the Kids and was VERY impressed with it's speed an functionality compared to more mainstream brands of smartphone costing £££ more.

      1. Tony Green
        Thumb Up

        Re: G300

        Can't fault the G300 on value for money. I searched around second-hand dealers for a cheap Android 'phone and couldn't find anything to match its spec for less than twice the hundred quid it cost me.

        The ICS upgrade they and Vodafone rolled out was a complete mess for a lot of people (myself included) but sticking to Gingerbread it's a good device for the money.

        Not sure I trust Huawei not to have installed a back-door in it, given their connections to the Chinese government, but I doubt I'm someone they're going to be interested in anyway. (And if I'd been mug enough to go for a Windows 'phone I'd be just as worried about a back-door for Uncle Sam).

    3. Tequila Joe
      Thumb Up

      ...awesome phone...

      I really like your last sentence for having two relevant interpretations.

      Also, your "...awesome phone..." comment hit an issue I was discussing with some friends yesterday: when idly comparing brief experiences of the various 7-inch tablets available we found more freedom and flexibility in the cheap products from an apparently totalitarian and/or communist state* than in what we were offered by more commonplace commercial companies, which had limitations geared around target consumers or targeting behaviour in a broader selection of consumers.

      Of course build quality, reliability and support were agreed as being difficulties with the cheap items, but if you're only looking at a product lifetime of six-months or a year, and making them cheap enough to throw away and replace...well, how does that weigh in the balance with broader functionality?

      At the moment I see these companies as responding to what consumers really want to do with what they can spend, and see the more stodgy established companies as mainly keeping on offering limited choices when they hope the limitation will hold some appeal with ideas for safe walled-garden or cloud-backup/transfer.

      *Disclaimer - This description is not to be taken as accurate or reliable. I have never been to China, nor do I know any Chinese people to a level where they would confide in me their experiences in China. I have sometimes listened to the bone-headed news in the MSM.

  4. This post has been deleted by its author

  5. John Styles

    Fear not

    The West can compete on its management skills and strategic thinking.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Re: Fear not

      Yeah right.

      We will talk about this after the dollar collapse. See you in December.

      1. GrandpaChris

        Re: Fear not

        The US dollar has been collapsing for years! The more its spread around and used as a BigMac exchange indicator the less likely it will recover.

  6. Professor Falken
    Thumb Up

    My first android handset....

    ... was a Huawei

    The T-Mobile Pulse about three years ago.

    It worked well and is still in use as a basic throttle for my JMRI-controlled model railway.

    They never did release an Android update via T-Mobile that I could use successfully, however one of the modaco ROMs worked beautifully!

    Good luck to them!

  7. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

    "If we insist on giving away intellectual property then the value built on top of it will go to more innovative companies that plan better, and produce goods that are every bit as good as the global brands but at a keener price."

    I see the hidden message. Of course no-one is "giving away" "intellectual property" otherwise there would not not be weekly nukefests about ideas someone had while on the shitter. Systems may be opened up and not run like Alcatraz to attract third-party developers, partners and, yes, competitors.

    If we insist on keeping our hallowed intellectual property then any potential value it has will just wither away while more innovative companies that plan better, and produce goods that are every bit as good as the global brands but at a keener price -- just build their own.

    Apple's money bomb seems to belie this, but in reality this is just a temporary phenomenon with Apple unable to produce at acceptable cost out-of-Asia and targeting the relatively well-endowed locals, in other words, it repackages comparative advantages in production.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      When the facts (Apple's stinking pile of cash) don't fit your ideology (give away IP because fark creative people) you then claim "temporary phenomenon"

      You're like a global warming denier.

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

        Actually I AM a global warming denier.

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Trend and intellectual honesty

    "To be brutally frank, Samsung's "innovation culture" is mostly about following trends rather than acting as a "first mover", in your humble writer's opinion, while Huawei's is about long-term planning and strategy."

    Funny, with the Galaxy Note (I) and the Galaxy SIII (big screen) I'm pretty sure Samsung was a first mover. Even with the 7" tab. Look at Apple Andrew, they released the iPad mini...

    To be brutally frank, stop with the bias.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Trend and intellectual honesty

      Yes, it's simply disingenuous to suggest that Samsung just reacts to customer fashions: OLED screens, CPUs, etc. are all the result of a ten year plan at Samsung. Medical technology is the target of the next ten.

      The role of the Communist party and the People's Liberation Army in many of the larger Chinese companies should not be discounted.

      As for the "intellectual property giveaway". This is just another strawman to try and shore up the idea of Windows Phone as the pinnacle of innovation. Operating systems were commodified some time ago. Google understands this and the value of selling services just as well as the free-to-play game entrepreneurs throughout Asia.

      As for eschewing Western approaches: Huawei in particular has been very busy setting up real R&D labs around Europe. Like Lenvovo, it seems to understand that despite the huge domestic market, really successful companies have to compete globally.

    2. Raz

      Re: Trend and intellectual honesty

      Not true. Dell had 5" phone (Streak) way before Samsung. I loved the size, but unfortunately it was not working on the network I am using.

      As for 7" tablets, I think the first one of importance is the Blackberry one, but I may be wrong here.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Trend and intellectual honesty

      "To be brutally frank, stop with the bias."

      At least it's ever-so-humble bias now ;)

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    To be even more brutally frank..

    if these "things" (and I'm including every single manufacturer in this generalisation, including ones with fruity names) didn't have brand names on I wouldn't have a clue who made them.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    Subliminal msg ..

    "As I looked around me at MWC, Android was everywhere. But even Sony could not differentiate its me-too Android tablet from anyone else. It's really there for Huawei's taking".

    Ah, having slaughtered a calf and examined the entrails (extispicium), I have achievement enlightment. If you as a hardware manufacturer move to Android instead of, for instance Windows Phone, you risk having your lunch stolen by Huawei.

  11. Anonymous Coward

    Giving away intellectual property?

    "If we insist on giving away intellectual property then the value built on top of it will go to more innovative companies that plan better, and produce goods that are every bit as good as the global brands but at a keener price."

    I don't follow, how is building on top of other peoples 'intellectual property' innovation?

  12. Chris Reynolds

    "A year ago Huawei didn't even have a brand for its smartphones "

    What about their Ideos phones? The brand was short-lived but there were at least two models, the X5 and the U8150.

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