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Huawei Still Sold More Phones Than Apple In 2019

  • Huawei Still Sold More Phones Than Apple In 2019, But Admits 2020 Will Be ‘Difficult Year’

    Huawei’s smartphone business had a milestone year in 2018, as the company reached the 200 million phone shipment mark for the first time. It was also enough to push the Chinese tech giant ahead of Apple to become the world’s No. 2 smartphone brand by units sold. This year, despite being placed on the United States’ “entity list”—essentially an export blacklist—Huawei still managed to sell more phones than Apple, and likely remain in the number two spot.

    In an internal memo to employees that was shared with select media, Huawei’s rotating chairman Eric Xu announced today that the company sold 240 million phones in 2019. Apple, according to analysts, will finish the year at around 185 to 190 million phones sold. Samsung hasn’t announced figures yet, but it very likely remains at the top spot.

    Xu also announced in the memo that Huawei’s total revenue in 2019—which includes the company’s carrier business and enterprise business in addition to consumer gadgets—topped 850 billion yuan (around 121 billion), an 18% increase over 2018.

    These numbers are surprising, considering the Google export ban could have been a crippling blow to the company’s global phone business. But while Huawei declined to provide detailed breakdowns of its 2019 phone sales such as how many phones were sold outside of China, Xu does say in the memo that the company’s record phone sales are likely due to momentum carried over from early 2019 before essentially being banned from using Google, and even concedes that the company won’t grow in 2020 like it did in 2019.

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