The third-largest smartphone manufacturer in the world may be planning to cut its mobile device shipments by up to 60%. According to reports, Huawei has informed its suppliers to expect a significant drop in stock in 2021, taking it down from 189 million (in 2020) to roughly 70 million this year. Of course, the significant cutback on smartphone shipments is likely due to harsh sanctions against the Chinese telecoms company.
In 2019, the US placed Huawei (among others) on the Entity List, barring any US company from trading with them in any way. This meant it quickly lost access to Google’s Android operating system (through no lack of trying on Google’s part to keep it). This has significantly impacted its mobile phone business, which was on track to hold the number one spot for most smartphones shipped in 2020.
Losing control on the Huawei
“Thanks to the support of Huawei fans around the world, Huawei remains a top three global smartphone provider in 2020, in terms of annual product shipment,” a Huawei South Africa spokesperson said when asked for comment on its smartphone production plans. Currently, the company is looking cosy in the number six spot on that list.
In addition to its Google/Android woes, it has also been barred from supplying and installing any 5G infrastructure in quite a few countries. It has since decided to sell off its budget smartphone brand, Honor, in an attempt to focus its efforts.
“Huawei has always been committed to innovation and devoted to creating more value for consumers with better products. Over the last year, our smartphone business has developed robustly, and tablet, PC and wearable have seen a significant growth. We remain confident about the future,” the spokesperson said.
Now it looks like the smartphone manufacturer is in early discussions to sell its P- and Mate series of devices — an unconfirmed rumour that could back up its plan to produce and ship fewer smartphones throughout the year.