Huawei Plans to be the World’s Largest Smartphone Maker by 2020

Huawei has shown robust growth in the last year, which has made it surpass Apple and become the second largest smartphone maker on the planet in 2018.

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Despite its international setbacks in the field of telecom networks, Huawei is counting on its domination of the smartphone market. CNN reports that the Chinese giant thinks it will be the world’s number one sales leader by the end of 2020. Huawei expects to remove Samsung from the top of smartphone suppliers worldwide by the end of 2020, after removing Apple from its second position in the middle of last year, a company official said on Thursday.

“This year at the soonest, next year at the latest, we will become number one,” said Richard Yu, chief executive of Huawei’s consumer division in Beijing.

Yu says the company sold over 200 million smartphones in 2018, up 30% over the previous year. The company has sold over 100 million smart devices, including tablets and wearables. Total consumer division sales rose 40 percent to $52 billion.

In recent years, the Chinese company was always in third place in the standings, preceded by Samsung and Apple by the number of devices sold. However, in Q2 of 2018, it has exceeded the Apple and in recent months has consolidated its position, shortening the distance from Samsung.

According to the latest report by Gartner (dated December 2018), Samsung holds 18.9% of the market, while Huawei has reached 13.4% – only five percentage points separate it from the first position. It is really incredible to notice the jump forward made in the last year by the Chinese company.

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Growth is unstoppable

If at a political level, Huawei is not doing well, the same cannot be said commercially. Despite some recent diplomatic problems, the rise of Huawei seems to be unstoppable.

According to TrendForce, 2019 will be another year in decline in the smartphone market, but Huawei will still grow, further reducing the distance with Samsung. Comparing the global sales of the top 5 smartphone manufacturers between 3Q 2017 and 2018, only Chinese companies have grown. Both Xiaomi and OPPO experienced a 1.5% boost, while the progenitor Huawei grew 3.9%.

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In contrast, Apple maintained the same market share of 11.8%. Not an exclusively negative result, but that still reflects the bad situation of the company, even on the stock exchange. On the contrary, Samsung dropped by -3.4%, currently the number one company on the mobile market. A position that, however, could soon lose in Huawei’s own favor.

Last year, Huawei broke a record by selling more than 200 million smartphones, thanks in part to the success of its P20, Honor 10 and Mate 20. When the announcement fell in December, Huawei said it had the plan to become the world’s number one by the end of 2019.

But this path to the summit faces obstacles. Last month, Huawei’s chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, was arrested in Canada at the request of the US authorities. The daughter of Huawei’s founder Ren Zhengfei, Meng risks being extradited to the United States because of alleged violations of Iranian sanctions.

Earlier this month, a Huawei employee was arrested in Poland for spying for China. He has since been fired. Also, in January, US federal prosecutors launched an investigation into Huawei following allegations that it stole trade secrets from T-Mobile following a lawsuit filed in 2014 between the two companies. In the United States, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, but also in Europe, the United Kingdom and Germany, governments have or will enact boycotts on Huawei telecom equipment for deployment of future 5G networks.

Huawei devices are popular in China, but also in other Asian countries, such as Japan, Malaysia, and Thailand. The company is top three of its sales in the United Arab Emirates, South Africa, and Mexico, and has grown in Europe as well.

Is it in 2019 that the difference between the first two will diminish? Let us know with your comments.

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