Huawei, as a Chinese company, is of course quite successful in Asia, as their Honor brand has been doing very well, giving the likes of Xiaomi something to worry about. Focusing on devices that offer great experiences at lower costs is a strategy that has proven to work well in Asia however, in emerging markets it’s not quite possible to expect people to be either able, or willing, to pay the extra that these devices cost compared to the lower-end offerings. Luckily for Huawei, the Chinese brand makes smartphones for practically every price point, and in Africa, Huawei is seeing extraordinary growth.
As Reuters is reporting, Steven Wu, the head of Huawei in the Africa region has said that “last year we sold 1 million devices and this year in 2015 we will double the shipment”. In the face of Samsung and Apple, 1 Million devices doesn’t sound like much at all, but when you consider that South Africa is an emerging market, these figures are positive and besides, 100% growth is still 100% growth no matter how you look at it. For Huawei, it’s not just South Africa where they’re poised to continue growth, as they’re working on expanding into Angola, Nigeria, Egypt and Mozambique as well. Analysts are predicting that smartphone penetration will reach 410 Million or so units by 2018, skyrocketing from the 79 Million recorded in 2012, and Huawei wants to be there to capitalize on this new growth.
Getting the “next billion” online was a big focus of Google’s I/O 2015 keynote, and as devices become more and more capable with decreasing costs, it looks like the next billion will be online sooner than we first thought. If Huawei can make some money while enabling these new users through low-cost devices, then why not? The Chinese company is keen to become know as more than just that, and while they’re starting off slowly in the US with lukewarm launches like the Huawei P8 Lite they are becoming something of a name in Europe and now, Africa.