Huawei has outlined its plan to become the biggest smartphone player in South Africa.
Speaking at a media briefing in Sandton, Johannesburg, Huawei South Africa general manager Likun Zhao said the company aims to become the biggest smartphone vendor in South Africa in the next two years.
“It took Huawei two years to become the second-biggest smartphone company in South Africa. We hope we will achieve this in maybe one or two years, depending on our strategy,” said Zhao.
Zhao believes if Huawei can continue to improve its brand recognition and consumer consideration, it will achieve this goal.
The company has experienced impressive year-over-year growth and penetration in the South African post-paid market, he added.
Huawei said that in the post-paid smartphone segment, it is already the number one smartphone brand across many mobile operators.
Zhao added that Huawei’s more affordable smartphones are also seeing impressive uptake among customers, with Y3 Android Go phone users providing positive feedback.
He added that due to the popularity of these devices, Huawei will bring more Android Go smartphones into South Africa in the future.
Additionally, Huawei has sold almost double the volume of P20 devices in South Africa compared to its P10 range.
Market share and strategy
Huawei recently overtook Apple in global market share to become the second-biggest smartphone manufacturer in the world after Samsung.
Huawei shipped 54.2 million phones in the second quarter of 2018, a 41% year-on-year increase – which gave it a 16% share of the global market.
Apple secured 12% market share for the period, while Samsung retained first place with 21%.
Zhao said this rapid growth was due to the popularity of the Mate and P series devices, along with the increasing popularity of Nova smartphones across the mid-range segment.
Huawei is ahead of Apple in the South African market, too, with 14.5% market share compared to Apple’s 4%.
Zhao said their investment in research and development would allow it to continue its rapid growth and close the gap between it and Samsung globally.
Huawei’s R&D spend already exceeds that of Apple, and Zhao said the company will continue to focus on AI-powered technologies and hardware integration to improve its products.