Our main focus in Serbia, like all markets, is to continue along the path that we have embarked upon and continue growing in all aspects, says Wang Yanmin, president of Huawei Device, CEE and Nordic, who recently visited Serbia and spoke with CorD about Huawei’s ambitions on the global market and in the region.
“We are today happy in the knowledge that our devices are recognised as good, high quality and premium for those seeking high-end devices and are affordable for different audiences,” says our interlocutor.
According to the data available, Huawei’s brand awareness in the countries of Northeast Europe averaged more than 60 per cent in 2015, while in Serbia and neighbouring countries it reached more than 90 per cent. How has the situation progressed in the meantime?
– For Huawei, our unwavering dream is to provide the best devices that will understand our consumers – their needs, habits, expectations – and, most of all will be the best devices for them. In order to achieve this, our focus is always on research and development; in 2016 we invested around 30 million USD in our R&D…every day. We will continue in our efforts to understand the market, in order to offer our best and produce products that will convince consumers to select our products.
This has proven to be the right approach, and a highly efficient one, that has brought growth for Huawei in both the countries of Northeast Europe and Serbia and its neighbouring countries, raising the mentioned percentages to levels that we always believed were possible.
We are today happy in the knowledge that our devices are recognised as good, high quality and premium for those seeking high-end devices and are affordable for different audiences.
We are observing this fast-changing world and adapting our products to consumer needs. For us, the future is now, and it arrived with the new Mate 10 Pro and the world’s first built-in AI processor
What are the most important factors that have driven the recognition of Huawei handsets to such a high percentage?
We listen to the shifting needs of our consumers and constantly improve our devices, as well as ourselves. Each of our devices is made of many different components that come together in the perfect symphony of a technological masterpiece. To make each of those components the best possible, we partner with the industry’s leading manufacturers and create devices together.
Our latest flagship product: Huawei Mate 10 Pro, our intelligent machine, as we like to call it, is the newest testament to that. It is the first phone with AI installed and it provides many novelties that we believe our consumers will like – AI-aided scene and object recognition for professional-looking pictures by everyone, performance enhancement, battery life of up to two days and many more.
We also always strive to give our consumers the possibility to choose – whether it is colour, shape, performance, price or design, our devices come with a variety of choices for everyone’s individual needs and desires. And that is what truly makes a difference.
Are there different patterns in the use of smartphones in the two markets you cover?
– CEE and the Nordic Region consist of 26 countries. Each country has a different culture, language and consumer habits, and we respect this diversity. We work hard to adjust our activities on each market, with experts in every country responsible for identifying each market’s needs, and this approach allows us to develop ourselves together with each of those markets.
What do you see as other specificities of the CEE market, and how does Huawei respond to observed trends?
– The main goal for us, as mentioned before, is to provide the best products that will understand the needs and expectations of our consumers on each market. We believe that every activity of ours should be a response to consumer habits; that the product should understand its owner and know how to work with him to deliver the best possible performance. This is a trend we constantly follow on markets, not only in our region but worldwide.
HUAWEI eco-CONNECT | CEE & Nordic is an integrated conference for the Eastern and Nordic European ICT ecosystem, which took place in Vienna and Czechia in 2016 and 2017. How do you select countries for these events and do you consider Serbia as a potential venue for one of these conferences?
– Most of the biggest tech events are held in Western Europe or the U.S. At Huawei we believe that focusing on Central and Eastern Europe can be a one-time opportunity for us to meet great experts from this part of the world. As mentioned previously, this region is developing very rapidly, and our key focus is on providing a great contribution to this development.
What is the importance of such events for Huawei’s market position?
– We are now among the leaders in the CBG part and most of our consumers know us for the innovative and consumer-driven devices that we provide to the market. At the same time, we need to remember that the history of Huawei started in 1987 and the main focus back then was on Enterprise and Carrier solutions.
We believe that combining our heritage and an innovative approach can enable us to be a market leader. The Enterprise and Carrier network are still very important for us and our goal is also to be visible in this part of the tech market.
In 2016 we invested around 30 million USD in our R&D … every day. We will continue in our efforts to understand the market, in order to offer our best and produce products that will convince consumers to select our products
What is the major goal of your visit?
– As mentioned earlier, we are proud of the growth that we achieved in the last two years. Our main focus is to continue on the path that we have embarked upon and continue growing in all aspects. We believe that every market in the region is an important piece of the puzzle and Serbia fits seamlessly into this description. We understand how important Serbia is for our development and I want to nourish this connection.
Which trends does Huawei see on the smartphone market in 2018, generally and in this region?
– Huawei, as a tech company, needs to be constantly connected to consumers and their needs. We are observing this fast-changing world and adjusting our products to consumer needs. For us, the future is now, and it arrived with the new Mate 10 Pro and the world’s first built-in AI processor.
The Serbian Government has made its e-government agenda of one of its priorities, while it also considers m-government as an option. How do you see mobile phone use in terms of m-government and m-banking?
– The fast-growing popularity of all e-services shows that this is among the current trends. We know that those services are still developing in our region, but at the same time, Western Europeans or Chinese people use various mobile services all the time. Personally, I am a big fan of “mobilesomething”, as it allows us to have the whole world in the palm of our hand. I consider this as being one of the major advantages of a technological revolution.
How do these changes in the use of mobile phones – from simple calls and messaging to a much more complicated trend – influence the physical shape and software of new generations of phones?
– During our recent “Who is Huawei?” event in Finland, we spoke with external and internal experts and journalists from across the region about what they would like to see from the smartphone of the future. Journalists shared with us what they believe their readers would want from these phones and I saw many extremely interesting ideas that could be implemented in the future; interestingly, while many ideas were very unique, there was one that was predominant – having a foldable screen. Something that could fit in your pocket and expand to the size of a tablet. I, for one, am excited at what the future will bring and can’t wait to see it.