Welcome to Brown’s Bytes! Your weekly insight from Mobliciti’s CTO Andy Brown. Follow #brownsbytes
31st July 2020
Almost two years to the day, I published a Byte looking at the rise of Huawei in the smartphone space.
It is amazing how quickly things can change in the world of technology. Back then it was still necessary to explain who Huawei was when doing a piece on them, and now the brand is arguably one of the best known in technology. Admittedly not necessarily for the best of reasons, but even so their brand recognition is now massive…
Two years ago, the big story was that Huawei had overtaken Apple to be the second-largest manufacturer of handsets in the world. Back then the big news was that this brand that nobody in the West knew about had managed to do this almost exclusively on the back of China’s domestic market.
Well, the news this week is the almost inevitable next step, Huawei has now overtaken Samsung and is THE BIGGEST smartphone manufacturer in the world, based on handsets shipped. Now, there is definitely a couple of asterixis against this due to COVID-19, but even so, this is a major moment…
Even two years ago Huawei hadn’t launched in the US market, but in the intervening 2 years from my last Byte, there has obviously been a major freeze in relations between the US and China, and Huawei have been very much in the centre of this. As can be seen, by their rise in the smartphone space, they are clearly a very credible threat to any competition when they enter an area of the market.
In the background, Google has had to remove Huawei from its Android ecosystem. Again, I mentioned this back in May 2019. As predicted Huawei had no choice but to create its own Android ecosystem.
And they have done it… and it has made absolutely no difference to their device shipments… as mentioned before, THEY ARE NOW THE BIGGEST!
Much has already been written about a Cyber Cold War opening up in 2020 with tech increasingly splitting into East vs West camps. Well, Android is mixed up in all this, it is effectively now split down the middle. And for the Enterprise Admins who look after global estates, this inevitably means a LOT more complexity for them going forward. Keep an eye on this space and I wouldn’t be surprised if the handsets end up being banned at some point as well… because…
Any conversation about Huawei inevitably leads to questions about 5G infrastructure. In an effort to head off the inevitable questions (and for the record, these are my personal opinions):
- Yes – it’s bonkers!
- No – it’s nothing to do with the technology
- Yes – our 4G and Broadband networks already run on lots of Huawei kit
- Yes – it will inevitably slow down the UK’s 5G rollout and cost a lot more now
- Yes – it’s bonkers!
Happy times, hey readers?