Many Americans stick to one of two giant smartphone offerings: Apple or Samsung. A few spring for HTCs, LGs, or a OnePlus. But have you heard of Huawei?
Chinese tech giant Huawei (pronounced wah-way) is absolutely killing the smartphone game lately. With the near-future release of their new flagship phone model the Mate 20 and overall pretty good product reviews, they’re feeling confident.
Out of Reach
Although they’re now the world’s third-largest smartphone maker, Americans still haven’t been able to snag a Huawei from any U.S. carriers. There is the option to buy straight from the manufacturer or third-party, but many have decided to not go that route. Why? Well, the American smart tech community has taken a step back from anything Chinese-based (Huawei and its competitor ZTE in particular) thanks to a scandalous 2012 report from the U.S. House Intelligence Committee. In the report, there are indications that phones from Huawei and ZTE were capable of being used for spying on American citizens, posing a national security threat.
In the spring of 2018, FCC chairman Ajit Pai proposed legislation that would ban U.S. companies from using government subsidies to buy telecommunications equipment from other companies labeled as national security threats, like Huawei. This push, along with Huawei’s recent growth and tech output, re-sparked the Chinese smartphone debate.
That’s not all the sketchiness surrounding Huawei’s practices. Site UL, short for Underwriters Laboratories, created the industry standard 3DMark benchmark test for smartphone performance. While testing the new Huawei P20, Huawei P20 Pro, Huawei Nova 3, and Honor Play models, they noticed something off. With further investigation, the UL team concluded that Huawei had hidden a performance-enhancing mode in their phones to fudge better performance scores. Of course, Huawei execs denied this accusation, explaining it away as a side effect of their AI tech. Still, UL delisted these models from their site.
Shooting for the Moon
Regardless, things are going well for Huawei and many consumers stand by them as a solid smartphone option, ignoring or debunking the negative claims against them. Just recently, polls showed Huawei surpassing Apple as the number one recommended brand among Chinese consumers.
They’ve also been receiving awards left and right. For example, data center energy overhaul is a big deal in the tech world right now. Around 80% of data centers are using or considering cold aisle containment methods to cut down the energy use of their hot-running servers. Huawei just won two awards from Datacenter Dynamics Asia Pacific, one of which for its Shandong Cloud Ship Data Center Project, a partnership with Unicom. The project won the ‘Smart Data Center’ award mostly due to its modular construction and unique cold aisle containment system that helps keep energy consumption and costs extremely low. Will Huawei give the world the first truly ‘green’ data centers?
We don’t yet know if Huawei can break past American stigma surrounding its ground-breaking tech. Even with all the controversy surrounding them, do you think a top-notch smartphone would be worth it?