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Huawei claims it could become the world’s largest smartphone maker next year

The Chinese smartphone maker said yesterday that it is positioned to become the world's largest smartphone vendor by the end of next year.
The Chinese smartphone maker said yesterday that it is positioned to become the world’s largest smartphone vendor by the end of next year.

Image: Jaap arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Huawei is basically screaming, “Can you hear me now?”

The Chinese smartphone maker said yesterday that it is positioned to become the world’s largest smartphone vendor by the end of next year. Huawei just upped its 2018 yearend shipment prediction to more than 200 million, which Huawei chief executive Howard Yu previously expressed as his goal.

“I think it’s no problem that we become the global number two next year,” Yu said during a media briefing at the company’s Shenzhen (southeast China) headquarters.

“In Q4 next year, it’s possible we become number one.”

Although Samsung and Apple have long held the first and second spots respectively, Huawei is actually very well-situated to make such an ambitious claim — the smartphone giant just overtook Apple this week as the second largest smartphone vendor.

It would still, however, have to do some heavy smartphone lifting to beat frontrunner Samsung (which holds 20.9 percent of the marketshare and set a goal of selling 350 million smartphones this year). Although Samsung is positioned to fall short of this benchmark, it will most likely — if not certainly – still push more devices out than Huawei will.

But keep in mind that Huawei says this as global suspicion has locked it out of multiple key markets, like the United States and Australia.

In February this year, six of the top U.S. intelligence agencies, including the CIA, FBI, and NSA, advised people against buying Huawei and ZTE phones over fears of espionage. And Verizon as well as AT&T reportedly both dropped plans this year to sell the phone.

Australia has treated Huawei with similar animosity. The telecommunications company had to go so far as to issue an open letter to assuage Australian fears that it was not about to sabotage the country’s 5G rollout.

Huawei has therefore mainly focused on the Chinese and European markets, where it has seen the green roll in. Let’s see whether that can happen in more Western countries amid these trade tensions.

Samsung, watch your back!

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