If there's a CEO in the mobile industry that's a lot of fun to hear talk, it's Richard Yu of Huawei. This guy is an absolute goldmine for quotes and soundbites - as you'll have noted from the title. In fact, Mr Yu is probably one of the most outspoken CEOs in the business right now, okay, maybe that's pushing it but, he's certainly up there with the best of them. Way back in January, Yu made some comments about Samsung's use of plastic - it's worth a read, and you can check it out here.
Now, the Yu is back and he's been talking smack about Samsung and Apple once more, with the assertion that Huawei can become third in the world come 2015. Realistically, that might not be too lofty an aspiration to have. The Chinese company make some quality smartphones - this they proved with the recent Ascend P6 - and they've got backing from their own government back home in China. They've got decent business strategy, quality products and yet it's not coming together for Huawei just yet. Yu is hopeful however, and goes on to list some of the reasons why he's confident that his company offers better products than their competitors.
Speaking to British publication, the Telegraph, Yu came out against both Apple and Samsung. Mr Yu speaks about the Galaxy S4 - and Samsung as a whole - as a product of good investment in marketing and branding, rather than good products:
"Samsung, they have such huge money - if you invest in marketing and branding then people will always buy no matter how good the products are. The Samsung Galaxy S4 is just a so-so smartphone."
There's absolutely no denying that Samsung's marketing budget dwarfs most other companies and so it doesn't surprise us that Yu would use this a tactic to tarnish Samsung's name. Calling the S4 a "so-so smartphone" though? We're pretty sure the S4 is a little more than that, sure the design and software stayed very similar but, the Galaxy S4 is still a great smartphone from Samsung.
Mr Yu has to have something fun to say about Apple, right? Of course he does:
"In its latest update, Apple makes the phone extremely simple to use," he says. "But if we are just learning from them we can't catch up, because they are now slipping. We want to go higher than them."
We're pretty much in agreement with Yu here, there's nothing spectacular coming from Apple right now. Sure, iOS 7 is a huge departure but it's hardly what we'd call original and we're sure that a lot of iOS veterans have balked at their new design.
On to Google and we get a glimpse of how Huawei think:
"We have a good relationship with Google," says Yu. "We want Android to be more user friendly, so we have made a lot of enhancements. Google is good for an engineer but it's not good for the consumer. It's a little bit too complicated."
While we're not sure we'd call stock Android "complicated" it can leave users in the dark at times, which isn't great for those looking for a complete out of the box experience.
One thing that's always been a frustration concerning Huawei is that their devices very rarely make it West. Well, they're moving into the UK in a bigger way than before and he spoke a little about the UK:
"The UK's a good [test bed] for America and the world," he says. "We hire a lot of UK people and we contribute a lot to society.
In the UK we can get good people. We behave like a local company."
In contrast to the US government, the UK government has welcomed the firm with both George Osborne (the Chancellor of the Exchequer) and David Willets, Science Minister, going out of their way to make sure the firm is welcome.
The whole article is worth a read if you're interested in the industry side of smartphone and mobile tech and it's pretty interesting to hear about a company that may well be rubbing shoulders with Apple and Samsung in the coming years.