Huawei overtook Apple to become the world’s second-largest smartphone vendor by market share at the end of the second quarter of the year and has set its sights on the number one spot — currently held by Samsung — by 2020.
“Next year, we will be very close to number one, maybe we will be on par with Samsung. And at least the year after, maybe we have a chance (to be number one), the year 2020,” Richard Yu, the CEO of Huawei’s consumer division, told CNBC.
And Samsung will not be easy to beat. It has only slipped from the pole position in the smartphone market three times in the last five years, usually just for one quarter, according to data from Counterpoint Research.
Neil Shah, a research director at Counterpoint estimates Huawei would need to shop around 30 million to 40 million more smartphones per quarter to overtake Samsung.
“The markets where Samsung is strong – USA, Europe, India — has to be conquered by Huawei to make this happen,” Shah said, adding that India will be tough because of Samsung’s manufacturing, distribution, and brand, while the U.S. is “out of the question near-to-mid-term.”
But Shah said that Samsung could see its shipments dwindle because of fierce competition which could help push Huawei to number one.
Yu’s ambitions are bigger than smartphones, however. With new products like its speaker and wearable devices, Yu is aiming to create an ecosystem of smart devices.
“We want to take a leading role in the next ten years to become a whole solution smart life provider,” Yu told.