Technology Chinese smartphone maker Huawei takes on Apple with smartwatch

Chinese smartphone maker Huawei takes on Apple with smartwatch

CEO Richard Yu
CEO Richard Yu

(AA) – Huawei’s chief executive said Tuesday that his company has sights on markets further west than its home country.

CEO Richard Yu told a crowd at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, that he thinks the smartphone is in its final days. He said wearables, like smartwatches, are the future of devices.

Hu, who runs the Chinese smartphone maker that has seen enormous growth in recent years, is also tired of Huawei being slapped together with a series of new Chinese manufacturers, like Xiaomi, making lower-end devices that have provided serious competition for Samsung’s cheaper offerings. 

“Most Chinese smartphone vendors will disappear in the next three to five years, and we’ll be the leading ones,” Yu told the crowd. “In the future, our main competition will be from Western companies, not Chinese companies.”

During the conference, Huawei also revealed a line of smartwatches that the company is planning for a global launch.

Huawei says it sees Apple as one of its major competitors but the truth is that Apple is now the dominant smartphone manufacturer in the world, according to a new report published today by analyst firm Gartner.

For the first time ever, more than 1 billion smartphones were sold globally in 2014. During the final quarter of the year, Apple overtook Samsung’s hold on worldwide sales. Powered by the popularity of the iPhone 6, Apple took 20.4 percent of the market while Samsung finished with 19.9 percent.

In the fourth quarter of 2013, by comparison, Samsung had almost 30 percent of the global market, while Apple had 18 percent.

Apple didn’t knock Samsung off its perch alone. Chinese companies like Huawei and Xiaomi took a bite out of the South Korean company’s revenue, even if they didn’t take in a huge chunk of the market individually.

Now, it seems, Huawei wants to see if the same strategy works against Apple.

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