Huawei smartphone revenue jumps, reports say

Smartphone shipments for the Chinese company top 75 million units in 2014, pushing revenue to about $11.8 billion, according to Reuters and The Wall Street Journal.

Jon Skillings Editorial director
Jon Skillings is an editorial director at CNET, where he's worked since 2000. A born browser of dictionaries, he honed his language skills as a US Army linguist (Polish and German) before diving into editing for tech publications -- including at PC Week and the IDG News Service -- back when the web was just getting under way, and even a little before. For CNET, he's written on topics from GPS, AI and 5G to James Bond, aircraft, astronauts, brass instruments and music streaming services.
Expertise AI, tech, language, grammar, writing, editing Credentials
  • 30 years experience at tech and consumer publications, print and online. Five years in the US Army as a translator (German and Polish).
Jon Skillings
2 min read

Huawei smartphones, like the Ascend Mate 7 seen here, are a rarity in the US. CNET

Huawei Technologies continues to be an up-and-comer in the smartphone world.

In 2014, smartphone revenue for the Chinese telecommunications company rose by nearly one-third to $11.8 billion, according to both Reuters and The Wall Street Journal, each citing an internal staff memo.

The memo, sent by Richard Yu, the head of Huawei's consumer business, also said that smartphone shipments for the company exceeded 75 million units, an increase of 40 percent from the preceding year, both news organizations reported.

Huawei had been aiming to hit 80 million units for the year, Reuters said.

For all its growth, Huawei remains a fixture mostly in its home market of China. The year-end memo said that outside China, Huawei's growth in smartphone sales was strongest in the Middle East, northern Latin America and Southeast Asia, according to the Journal.

In the US, Huawei offers the Ascend Mate 7 , a metal-clad smartphone with a 6-inch display, fingerprint scanner and octa-core processor.

Huawei is among a trio of fast-growing, expansion-minded Chinese smartphone makers, along with Lenovo (which in October closed its acquisition of Motorola Mobility) and Xiaomi (which said earlier this week that it has raised $1.1 billion in venture capital funding). As of the third quarter of 2014, the three rounded out the top five companies by global smartphone sales, behind Samsung and Apple.

"Over the holidays we expect record sales of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, but we should not underestimate the Chinese vendors and local brands," Annette Zimmermann, research director at Gartner, said in a statement earlier this month. "Chinese players will continue to look at expanding in overseas emerging markets."

Huawei's growth and its quest for better smartphone designs earned the company a new accolade this year. In October, it made its debut in Interbrand's top 100 most valuable brands in the world, coming in at No. 94. "The company is working to change its image in the mobile handset market from that of the low-cost alternative to one of a more premium brand," Interbrand wrote.

Huawei was not immediately available for comment. Reuters said that a company spokeswoman declined to comment.