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Can Huawei discover breakthrough in Korea, regardless of Samsung, Apple’s rising dominance?

Can Huawei discover breakthrough in Korea, regardless of Samsung, Apple’s rising dominance?


The Huawei logo is observed through the Globe Synthetic Intelligence Convention in Shanghai, July 6, 2023. AFP-Yonhap

Chinese business seeks to set up existence with 5G handsets in 2024

By Ann Cao

Chinese telecommunications tools giant Huawei Technologies is confronted with lingering impacts of U.S. sanctions as perfectly as extreme opposition with its Korean and other rivals in 2024 in Korea, irrespective of a beneficial outlook for 2024 offered by field watchers.

Huawei is predicted to take the highlight in the smartphone marketplace in 2024 with an envisioned double-digit progress in international shipments, according to a report by exploration business TechInsights, Monday, which stated the organization could become “a huge surprise” in the abroad marketplace.

Nonetheless, in Korea, the dwelling to smartphone and semiconductor giant Samsung Electronics, the company is owning difficulty growing its sector share against the greatest gamers, as perfectly as securing have confidence in from community partners amid the U.S.-China tech war.

Huawei has been featuring solutions and solutions for Korean clients over the past two many years. Although the company is concerned in each shopper and company companies, it turned out that the client business has hit some roadblocks.

Huawei has been successfully absent from Korea’s smartphone market place for the earlier couple several years due to its “incapability to resource 5G chipsets,” said Abhilash Kumar, an sector analyst for TechInsights. “South Korea’s smartphone current market is 5G-hefty with 5G penetration of far more than 95 % for 2023, so it built tiny feeling for shoppers to purchase Huawei’s 4G-powered phones.”

Considering the fact that 2019, the U.S. has barred the Chinese agency, on national safety grounds, from accessing U.S. technologies including Google’s Android functioning system, which is made use of by rivals like Samsung. That has since dealt a weighty blow to the company’s overseas product sales.

Though it briefly surpassed Samsung to direct world wide smartphone shipments in early 2020, as of the 3rd quarter of 2023, it has dropped out of the prime 5 smartphone manufacturers in the entire world, lagging driving Apple, Samsung, as very well as its domestic friends — Oppo, Xiaomi and Vivo — in shipments, in accordance to details from investigation organization Counterpoint.

In Korea, Huawei’s industry share was just .1 percent in December 2023, in a stark contrast with Samsung’s 68.7 percent and Apple’s 26.5 p.c, according to Statcounter, an on the internet database.

Huawei Mate 60 Professional smartphones are found on show at a flagship retail store in Beijing in this undated image. Reuters-Yonhap

But factors might be unique this year, soon after Huawei built a surprise start final August of its Mate 60 Professional, a handset geared up with an superior, domestically developed 5G chip, indicating its capacity in cutting-edge chips irrespective of U.S. tech sanctions. The enterprise is now reportedly aiming for a comeback in some abroad markets, like Europe. Will it also return to the Korean market place?

“It looks unlikely,” Kumar stated. “Now that Huawei may possibly have managed to source 5G chipsets regionally, it can be nonetheless challenging for it simply because the nation is Samsung- and Apple-large and doesn’t have significantly acceptance for Chinese vendors,” he claimed.

Huawei has experimented with to start both top quality and economical smartphones considering the fact that 2014, but has been unable to get floor “mostly thanks to area operators’ desire for Samsung,” said Woody Oh, a provider director at TechInsights. “To be successful in the Korean current market, OEMs will have to seek operators’ support.”

Even with the complications, the organization is pinning hopes on its organization expert services, as said by Balian Wang, CEO of Huawei Korea, at a yr-stop occasion in Seoul late December.

In 2023, the 5G network supported by Huawei for Korean carriers rated initially in world assessments, Wang mentioned. In the enterprise small business sector, Huawei Korea supplied items such as info heart networks, campus networks and storage products and services.

Wang mentioned the organization is also increasing its foothold in the cloud computing market with a new cloud division founded in Korea in 2023, hoping to provide the details know-how and cultural entertainment industries.

Balian Wang, CEO of Huawei Korea, speaks during a press conference in Seoul, Dec. 20.  Courtesy of Huawei Korea

Balian Wang, CEO of Huawei Korea, speaks through a press convention in Seoul, Dec. 20. Courtesy of Huawei Korea

Even so, that led to another situation that Huawei needs to get worried about — how to deal with its relationships with neighborhood businesses underneath the shadow of the U.S.-China tech war, inspite of its repeated denials of the accusation that it is a protection menace.

SK hynix, the second-largest memory chipmaker in Korea, reported in September that it started out investigating how its two memory and flash storage solutions were being uncovered inside the most recent Mate 60 Professional, as unveiled in a teardown evaluate of the system. It emphasised in a statement at the time that the business “no lengthier does small business with Huawei because the introduction of the U.S. constraints in opposition to the enterprise.”

Some Korean businesses, these kinds of as enterprise conglomerate LG, nonetheless maintain excellent relations with the Chinese business. Wang referred to as LG Uplus, which is Korea’s third-most significant cellular provider, 1 of its “important world shoppers,” signaling secure cooperation between the two companies. LG Uplus is the only Korean telecom operator that is using Huawei’s base station equipment.

Even with all the uncertainties, the top rated govt of the Korean unit has highlighted its determination to Korea’s tech market.

Hunting to 2024, Wang told nearby media that the device, with additional than 230 workforce, prepared to help realize Korea’s digitalization and carbon neutrality objectives. It also strategies to go on supporting the cultivation of 1,000 future-generation ICT professionals.

Ann Cao is a tech reporter with the South China Early morning Write-up. She is at this time centered in Seoul, reporting for both of those The Korea Occasions and the South China Early morning Submit beneath an trade program.



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