Smartphone manufacturer Huawei has its eye on Kiwis

Huawei is sharpening its focus on its dual lens camera with a new campaign
Huawei is sharpening its focus on its dual lens camera with a new campaign Photo credit: Supplied

We live our lives through a camera lens. If we're not busy with selfies, we're snapping others, framing up our food, or capturing a landmark that's caught our eye.  More often than not, we're taking a photo just because we can.

It's an obsession that hasn't gone unnoticed by smartphone manufacturers. In particular Huawei, who later this week is launching a campaign featuring at Kiwis.

For the last couple of years it's focused heavily on its relationship with German camera maker Leica, which has co-engineered its dual-lens cameras.

"We noticed that more and more people were using their handsets to take pictures and that photography had become their everyday habit," Changzhu Li, Huawei’s vice president of Smartphone Product Line Strategy Development, told Newshub on a recent trip to China.

"We realised we should co-operate with the best in the industry."

Huawei's latest wave of advertising is for its P10 phone, the device it markets at 'new cosmopolitans'.  The firm has been doggedly determined to cultivate an image of luxury, usability and design whilst dreaming up ways to appeal to specific markets.

"We want to empower our consumers to be our greatest brand advocates," said Clemont Wong, the firm's Vice President of Global Product Marketing.

It also knows how to appeal to certain markets. The P10 has the world's first Te Reo Māori language operating system.

Huawei says photography has become an 'everyday habit'.
Huawei says photography has become an 'everyday habit'. Photo credit: Supplied

Huawei, or Wha-way, in case you're still struggling with how it's pronounced, made its name for building telecom networks. It was still reasonably unknown in the West until it entered the phone market. 

In the past few years, its ascent has been sharp. It's the number one smartphone manufacturer in China with 25% year-over-year growth and a total shipment of 20.8 million units for the first quarter of 2017 while globally it sits at number three, pipped only by Apple and Samsung.

Part of its success may lie in its makeup. It began 30 years ago with just 21,000 RMB in capital and 14 staff. Its founder, Ren Zhenghei, first served as an engineer in the People's Liberation Army.

The firm struggled at first but then followed Mao's strategy of using the countryside to encircle and capture the cities and has moved onto win in foreign markets too.

The company is big on attention to detail. A tour of a service centre revealed service while you wait with attentive staff, comfy chairs and places to charge devices even an onsite café for a coffee and a cake.   

"With technology, there’s usually a feeling of cold. With our service centres we want (people) to feel warmth," Chang Gao, Huawei's Head of Service Centre Global, told me.

Next month in China, it's launching a service where phone repairs can be done from the comfort of people's homes.

The world will see another Huawei phone soon. The next in the Mate series aimed at 'the new business Elite'.

It’s already hinted a bezel-less display, perhaps watching what Samsung has done and predicting what Apple is likely to do next.

Not that is seems unduly worried about its competitors.

"Healthy competition is a good pressure for us," Changzhu Li said smiling.

Emma Brannam visited Huawei’s headquarters in Shenzhen and the Mobile World Congress in China as a guest of Huawei.