Huawei’s success is often said to have come off the back of aggressive pricing strategies, but word on the floor at MWC is that this isn’t necessarily true.
It might have been the case once upon a time but after consulting several operators and industry insiders at Mobile World Congress 2017 the general feeling is that Huawei simply delivers a better all-round experience, which is ominous news for its competitors.
Yes, they are often cheaper, but generally only by a couple of percent we were told. We’re not talking insignificant amounts of cash but the amount saved is not usually the most important factor in any decision to select Huawei over Ericsson or Nokia or whoever, according to our sources.
So why is it that Huawei is going from strength to strength while most of its competitors are still trying to work out how best to fight back? Among the things were were told Huawei is currently doing better include its products, account management, customer care and technology roadmap.
On the product side of things, we were told that Huawei constantly innovates, brings interesting ideas to the table and is simply more advanced than Ericsson and Nokia. It makes big promises and delivers. From the account management side of things, a couple of operators said Huawei also looks after you better than the others.
One operator told us they believe this superiority partly comes down to experience. Huawei dominated the Chinese market before spreading throughout the world, but the sheer numbers and scale of the projects in China has put it in a solid position. The likes of Nokia and Ericsson, we were told, simply aren’t used to dealing with projects on the same level. China is the largest and one of the fastest growing countries in the world, honing its techniques in such a challenging environment before moving to the international arena has put it in a great position.
Another industry insider told us how impressed they were with Huawei’s presence at the show. The stand is confident but not overstated, focusing more on steady progress and solid delivery than utopian grandstanding. Its strong position in the industry seems to be allowing Huawei to not worry about what it can’t control and simply try to win business by doing its job well. The insider considers its parallel strength in the smartphone market to be indicative of this focus on competence and thinks its competitors should consider raising their games when it comes to delivery if they want to regain some of their lost ground.