Huawei's product strategy: Half Silicon Valley, half Hollywood

The company's deputy chairman believes combining "strong technology" with a solid user experience can make it successful in smartphones.

Don Reisinger
CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger

Huawei, the embattled China-based telecom equipment maker that has been trying unsuccessfully to make an entrance into the U.S., thinks it has the right recipe to be successful in smartphones.

Speaking to Reuters in an interview published on Friday, Huawei deputy chairman Guo Ping said that his company wants to expand its presence in smartphones and not co-branded devices with carriers, as it has in the past. As part of that strategy, the company wants to try and combine the benefits of flashiness and high-tech to appeal to customers.

"In some ways, (designing) a smartphone is in the middle of Silicon Valley and Hollywood," Guo Ping told Reuters. "Silicon Valley represents technology -- and smartphones need strong technology -- and the Hollywood aspect is about experience and perception."

Analogies aside, it appears that Huawei is thinking about the dramatic and delivering something that combines strong features with some design and feature ideas the market hasn't seen. But the company also wants to try something else: blur the lines between high-end and low-end devices.

"On the technology front we have a lot of breakthroughs. I don't know low-end or high-end," he told Reuters. "We just care about satisfying customer needs."

Interestingly, the Huawei vice-chairman didn't discuss what might be on everyone else's mind: how Huawei feels about claims from U.S. lawmakers that it could be a spy threat for the Chinese government. It appears now that Huawei's chief focus is purely smartphones.