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The New Smartphone Powerhouse: Huawei

The Chinese hardware maker is poised to be No. 3 in smartphones
The New Smartphone Powerhouse: Huawei
Illustration by Matthew the Horse

Sales of smartphones are booming, though very few phone makers have been rejoicing. Nokia and Research In Motion have seen their once-formidable businesses collapse into a mess of red ink and layoffs. HTC’s sales have tumbled. Once-proud Motorola Mobility has been acquired by Google. Sony and LG Electronics are confirmed also-rans.

Feasting on this wreckage are, of course, Apple and Samsung Electronics, which between them have 54 percent of the global market. The other big winner: Huawei Technologies. A company many Americans haven’t even heard of may well have passed Nokia last quarter to become the third-largest smartphone maker, according to Horace Dediu, founder of equity research firm Asymco. That’s up from No. 7 at the end of last year. “They’re the guys that don’t get a lot of respect because they’re not big in the U.S.,” says Dediu. “But they’re looking at big numbers.”