What is Huawei?
In the midst of constant coverage of a “Trade War” between the U.S. and China, the name Huawei seemingly keeps popping up. It feels like “the thing” that is Huawei just popped up out of nowhere in the last couple of years.
Huawei is a Chinese multinational technology conglomerate. Huawei sells consumer electronics along with other technology systems. Most notable is that Huawei sells infrastructure technology equipment to wireless carriers.
Huawei also sells a variety of consumer products such as smartphones, laptops, tablets, and TVs. It is the infrastructure equipment that is drawing the bulk of the attention, and consumers in the United States are likely not familiar with Huawei consumer products much at all. They don’t have a big presence in America currently, so the average American likely has no idea what Huawei is or why it keeps popping up in the news.
The equipment the wireless carriers are buying is what is concerning the American government the most. The concern is related to National Security and the role of the Chinese Government with Huawei and the potential to control technology serving America’s wireless needs and infrastructure. The CFO of Huawei was arrested in December of 2018.
There is an ongoing battle between various governments and so called “Big Tech” both domestically in the U.S. and abroad such as the tangle with Huawei. This is in the midst of ongoing adoption and growth of Bitcoin and the potential alternatives to the existing financial system and control maintained by the centralized governments. Huawei is under fire right along with Google and Facebook while alternatives like DuckDuckGo emerge.
Huawei Smartphone Market Share
Much to the chagrin of the Trump Administration, Huawei recently firmly solidified its #2 position globally in terms of smartphone market share. The global aggregate volume growth for smartphones continued to shrink and the U.S. enacted a quasi ban on Huawei phones, but the company continues to do well. Samsung is #1 globally and Huawei is #1. Apple is #3.
The combination of wireless equipment and the smartphones shifting more and more towards Huawei and away from American firms will likely keep this Huawei issue and Trade War front and center for some time.