Huawei’s Rise to Top of Smartphone Market Has Stalled

Posted on June 11, 2019 by Paul Thurrott in Android, Mobile with 74 Comments

Huawei would have surpassed Samsung to become the number one smartphone maker in the world this year. Then the U.S. happened.

“We would have become the largest [smartphone maker by volume] in the fourth quarter of this year,” Huawei chief strategy officer Shao Yang said Tuesday during a speech in Shanghai. “But now we feel that this process may take longer.”

Huawei surpassed Apple to become the second-biggest smartphone maker in the world last year and its heady growth in recent quarters suggested that it would pass Samsung for the top spot by early 2020. But Shao provided some data to prove his contention that this milestone would have happened in 2019, had the U.S. government not blacklisted the firm, triggering software and hardware supply problems.

Huawei, he said, sells 500,000 to 600,000 smartphones every single day. It’s not clear if those figures represent the tally from before or after the blacklisting. But some are estimating that the company’s smartphone sales will fall as much as 25 percent this quarter. And that could continue unless the U.S. blacklisting—a vile trade war tactic disguised as a national security issue—is ended.

Huawei’s rise was all the more impressive because the firm has almost no presence in the U.S. smartphone market.

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