“Our strategy is survival”

Huawei has been in a bad place since the 2019 US embargo that prevented it from accessing Google services. On the occasion of the release of the Huawei Mate 50 Pro, we returned with William Tian, ​​​​​​​​brand manager for Western Europe, to the challenges ahead: the App Gallery and the lack of diversity or group difficulties.

Huawei Mate 50 Pro // Source: Huawei

During IFA 2022, we caught up with the head of Huawei in Western Europe, William Tian. Faced with the difficulties encountered by the brand, especially in its smartphone branch, after the American embargo in 2019, we want to return to different topics with him. App Gallery operation and group difficulties are in the program.

The App Gallery problem

Even today, it remains difficult to install all the applications you want on the brand’s smartphones and tablets (we experienced this on the Huawei MatePad Pro 2022). For those who don’t follow it closely, let’s say that Huawei continues to sell Android phones, but is deprived of the Play Store. Instead, the brand has integrated an in-house application store called App Gallery, where many still struggle to function properly.

A situation that pushes us not to recommend their products in general. A priori, Huawei, from what William Tian told us, is not happy with its App Gallery:

“We made our application gallery very easy. Most of the applications are available, we work closely with our content providers, including France. We implemented Petal Search to provide more options, some app cannot be found in the App Gallery. » Let’s be clear, this is not the case. Too many applications are missing to recommend a Huawei smartphone to our readers today in our eyes.

The app grid on the Huawei Watch GT 3
The Huawei Watch GT 3 application grid // Source: Fandroid

We then asked William Tian if he still wants to improve the App Gallery and if he is happy with the fact that its users have to go through a browser to find their apps. His answer was more of a pirouette than anything else:

The French are known to love freedom. If you go through Petal Search, you will have more freedom (laughs).

We can laugh about it, but what this declaration reveals above all is that the group has no desire to radically improve the experience of smartphones, which prevents itself from declaring. “Work with content providers to bring their apps to the App Gallery. » In short, “We are working on it”.

Go back in two or three years

Many Huawei executives call 2021 a year of stability. For 2022, we have passed another important in the difficulties for Huawei. William Tian stated that for 2022, “ our strategy is to persevere and prepare for the future “. He added: “2022 will be a very difficult year for everyone, including Huawei. We are facing many challenges due to reduced consumption, high inflation and rising costs. »

Asked about the reasons for Huawei’s revenue decline, William Tian explained the reason for the loss of form: “All the decline is due to the smartphone business. Since 2019, we have started to accelerate the diversification of our portfolio, we have tablets, wearables, PCs, monitors… All these activities have since grown rapidly. During our meeting, the manager said that many investments were made in the direction of connected health in particular, with the creation of a giant research center dedicated to this universe, which unfortunately could not be done ‘g know the values.

In this diversification strategy, we can say that smartphones are no longer in their place and do not understand that Huawei is determined to continue to exit the model. It should be understood that from Huawei’s point of view, these devices, even if they are not sold, continue to have value. Some Huawei officials who wish to remain anonymous explained to us that the purpose behind the release of a Mate 50 Pro is mainly to “Continue to engage with more fans of the brand”in France. In short, don’t forget. These same executives admit that the goal for the company is“to return to smartphones in two or three years”about. Way to say that he is no longer present in that segment for the moment, if anyone still doubts it.

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