Hacker News new | comments | show | ask | jobs | submit login
Apple was overtaken by Huawei in global smartphone sales (qz.com)
101 points by prostoalex 82 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 125 comments



I bought a Huawei Honor 7x two months ago, and was happy with it until a software update went out that bricked mobile data on my device.

Factory resetting the device doesn't fix it (nor messing with APN settings), so I looked into flashing a ROM onto it to see if that'd do it, only to discover that Huawei has taken down the service which allowed customers to unlock their devices's bootloader. Now you have to contact support and wait for them to email you an unlock code. This is clearly a user hostile move: it makes it harder to load your own software on a device you purchased and, in my case, fix my own device.

I won't be buying from Huawei again.


Just to add to your conclusion, I think Apple leads in privacy. I would never buy a Chinese phone just from the fact that the Chinese government has a tremendous oversight and interference with large businesses.

Yes, US has that issue with NSA but at least Apple stands against abuse of data privacy and has a firm ethetical stance to protect consumers data. I don’t trust Google for that matter.

Edit: I feel like there is going to be what-about-tism responses. So, before you respond, ask yourself if you can criticize the Chinese government, protest against it and make a change in China. Last time that happened in Tiananmen square, there was massacre. That does not happen in US.


Removing some things from the Chinese App Store like VPN, Apple absolutely leads on privacy, by miles. Who knows what is going into the software for 100% Chinese phones, and Google's new iMessage answer isn't even going to be encrypted, not to mention reports their mobile OS is already losing out on privacy features to the Ad team.


I want to live in a world where businesses are formed based on the value they deliver to the consumer directly. Not siphoning the data and selling it to third parties. Ever growing advertisement and marketing needs/greed has created a universe of stuff around us that makes me ever so vigilant of companies selling me stuff for cheap and in turn selling me advertisements.

In old days (before the internet), if I buy a PC from Apple or IBM, you get what you pay for. Besides the cable companies / newspapers / magazines bombarding ads, everything back in the day was 1:1 - you pay for something, you get value for it.

Now a days, we have large companies losing money while killing competition (Uber), large companies in bed with government, and large companies in bed with advertisers and marketing agencies.

Fuck the world. I can't wait to see Dieter Rams' documentary premier this October. From the trailers, it looks like it is addressing the very fabric of today's society than talking about industrial design. [1]

I don't want to be a product. I want to be a loyal customer.

[1] https://www.hustwit.com/rams/


IBM's XT also cost nearly $6k when it debuted (quick Google search, maybe I'm wrong). We get so much value for free now that paying directly for all of that would be a huge step back. Roughly speaking, Google makes something like $120bn a year, spread across 1bn users. Would you pay $120 for using Google a year? Realistically though you'd pay much more because there's no chance Google would charge a person in the developing/3rd world what it charges a US citizen. It's not unthinkable to get a bill of $500 per user in USA to get these services.

This is one side of the coin, the other side is that for economic activity to take place, advertising must be available. People need to be informed of services and consumption needs to be encouraged to grow economic activity. How would that happen if companies locked down their platforms altogether? Would P&G, J&J and all the other conglomerates just shrivel and die in a world where they can't access consumers?


Attributing the decreased costs of computers to the rise of advertising-based business models is quite a stretch. As far as I can tell, advances in manufacturing technology and the broadening of the market base is what made that possible.

As to Google--I'd pay $500 per year not to have it constantly barrage me with reminders to use Chrome instead of Edge (so it can steal my apparently valuable browsing data). But, 90% of everything is crap. Crap is what the market wants, whether it's pop music or USA Today or advertising-based software. Who am I to argue?


> Attributing the decreased costs of computers to the rise of advertising-based business models is quite a stretch. As far as I can tell, advances in manufacturing technology and the broadening of the market base is what made that possible.

The Internet was built on an advertising monetization model, and you could argue that the penetration of computing devices to our lives wouldn't be nearly as far reaching without the Internet. In other words, non-tech people buy iPhones to access the ad-sponsored Google, YouTube and Instagram.


> The Internet was built on an advertising monetization model

No, it wasn't; the internet was built long before that. The advertising monetisation model didn't become significant until the internet was established as a popular mass venue.

Which makes sense; the audience drew advertising, not the other way around.


Change that to "the commercial internet" then - not talking about the DARPA/Usenet/early www universe, but rather anything post 96-97 or so. It's either ecommerce or advertising ever since then.


Why not talk about usenet/early www? Just because you can sweep it away doens't mean it didn't exist


Or AOL.


I have abandond Google and exclusively use DuckDuckGo. If Google wasnt giving search away for free to take users to the cleaners behind their back, there would actually be healthy competition in search and you would definitely not need to pay $500/yr.


People wouldn't pay that much, google would just make less profit...


I do pay Google exactly $120/year: I have my own GSuite Business account.

Think I can get them to stop datamining/tracking me?


Argh. I hate to play devils advocate on this issue.

Here goes: it seems like that model doesn’t work anymore. People look for what it costs on paper. You already here people talking about Apple as if it’s some impossible luxury standard. Can you imagine if computers became £5,000 for the base model again? I can’t imagine anyone paying for email in this day and age. And I certainly can’t imagine people paying for operating systems. Windows only has market dominance because it comes pre-installed and is effectively free.

That’s the issue. If you’re competing in this market; then you’re competing with “free” from the consumers eyes.


The base model iPad costs $329, comes with free email and and an OS with free updates. And it doesn't data-mine you.


“But an android tablet costs £100! Apple tax is too high!”


Stopping advertising based business models would not make a $500 computer suddenly cost $5,000. Also Windows is not ‘effectively free’, it’s just you don’t usually pay for it separately.

Stopping invasive user tracking would make internet advertising less effective, sure, but it wouldn’t prevent it completely. Ad Words doesn’t fundamentally depend on user tracking to associate search terms to advertisements for example.


> Windows is not ‘effectively free’, it’s just you don’t usually pay for it separately.

https://www.howtogeek.com/163303/how-computer-manufacturers-...

The cost of a pre-installed license is cost neutral in most cases due to the crapware they add.

My overarching point is that 99% of consumers are cost-conscious. They look at the price in paper and rarely weigh anything else, especially a fuzzy notion of privacy. We are the 1% and we should be mindful of the 99%


> Yes, US has that issue with NSA but at least Apple stands against abuse of data privacy and has a firm ethetical stance to protect consumers data. I don’t trust Google for that matter.

I have the opposite feeling. Apple gladly hands over iCloud storage management to the Chinese (gladly meaning they won't make a statement even about whether they are happy about it), whereas I trust Google to keep my data on servers they own and are subject to their rules. Be careful about "stands against abuse" when what you mean is "stands against abuse sometimes". Also be careful about "firm ethical stance" when they choose not to confirm that stance in places where it is at odds with the law...not very firm I'd say. At the very least, I'll take the consistent company even if I dislike their data collection practices.


If you turn off icloud, then the iphone is still presumably quite secure in China, correct?

I had assumed the android phones probably were breached by the chinese government, rendering data access superfluous in most cases. But I'm not especially well informed on the latter point beyond seeing articles like this one.

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/technology/tech-news/million...


Which is why I have been calling for an iOS Time Capsule. Especially for the Chinese Market. Instead Apple cared more about increasing their Services Revenue and push its user to iCloud.

And before anyone said you could use iTunes to Backup, please consider 90% of users don't like touching their computer anymore. It is simply not an elegant solution.

In an ideal world Cloud would be everything we wished for, No More BitFlip, Error, Drive Failure, Software Failure, Power Failure, File System Failure etc. But then it is very uneasy that government has all the data. Via iCloud Social Engineering, or Chinese Government forcing companies to give away those Data.


Very good points, I think I concede with "stands against abuse" and "firm ethical stance". Apple will do whatever the board and the shareholders demand.

I am mixing up ethics with business motivation.

Apple - Good ethics, but tied to business performance. They cannot and will not exit China or go against the grain with the Chinese authorities.

Google - Sells your data to advertisers, but has good ethical stance against authorities abusing data. Google doesn't operate in China since a decade or more I believe. They've somehow convinced the shareholders.


It’s eady to “convince shareholders” when a negligible part of your revenue comes from China.

So far this is just a rumor....

https://www.theverge.com/2018/8/1/17638480/google-china-sear...


>> This is clearly a user hostile move: it makes it harder to load your own software on a device you purchased and, in my case, fix my own device.

> Just to add to your conclusion, I think Apple leads in privacy.

Its seems like a bit of a non-sequitor to go from an Android manufacturer that will (after an inconvenient interaction by email) allow you to run whatever code you want - to Apple - that doesn't allow anything of the kind?

Fwiw I do think ios is leading in terms of off the shelf security on a device. But not really in terms of privacy vis-à-vis a custom Android/Linux rom with telemetry etc turned off.


Apple’s business model is not to sell your data. Apple’s business model is to sell you hardware.

Google (Android) sell your data to the advertisers.

You are totally mixing up open/closed source projects and business models.


> Just to add to your conclusion, I think Apple leads in privacy.

I just switched to an iPhone after 8 years of Android and I'm loving this aspect. And generally the phone seems to be more designed for humans compared to android. Also, the automatic do not disturb mode when I'm driving is great and I don't think I could go back to not having it. It's making me a better driver. Not that I was texting during driving, but not receiving notifications takes the phone out of my mind completely.


Kent State is within living memory, lest we forget.

Tiananmen Square massacre, 1989.

Kent State massacre, 1970.


That's quite a raging false equivalency. It's not clear exactly why the National Guard started shooting at Kent State, but there is no credible allegation that anyone ordered the shooting. In the aftermath, a federal commission was convened, and declared the shootings "unjustified" by the threat of violence to the guardsmen. (The protesters were violent--a few days before, they had set the campus ROTC building on fire.) Eight guardsmen, including all the ones believed to be responsible for the deaths, were indicted and tried. They were acquitted due to insufficient evidence of intent. The Supreme Court permitted civil suits against Ohio to go forward (the state ultimately settled). The incident led to the National Guard changing its crowd control policies. Today, Kent State is taught widely in schools and is recognized as a national tragedy.

Now, how many of these things apply to Tiananmen Square?


Tiananmen was much bigger and differs in many ways. The scales are not comparable.

Yet Kent State is a simple counter example to the grandparent’s claim that political protestors are not massacred in the US.

I’m not sure how much more clear I can be.


There’s a difference, namely that you can say “Kent State” and look it up online, read about it in textbooks, see the newspaper articles, and discuss it online without fear.

Try that with the Tiananmen Square massacre in China.

Another difference is that four civilians died in Kent state, while 1022 died in Tiananmen Square. That’s three orders of magnitude difference, and why Kent State is typically called “Kent State Shootings” while Tiananmen Square was a “Massacre”. In fact an order of magnitude more policemen and military died in Tiananmen than overall fatalities at Kent State.

They are not comparable. I’m fact more people died in Tiananmen than died protesting the entire Vietnam War in the US.


No one claimed they were identical. Kent State is a simple counter example to the claim made in the parent comment.


Kent state was tragic, but not only is it not subject to pervasive and draconian state censorship, it also was not explicitly ordered as an intentional massacre by the government. That particular distinction really does matter.


So it was a less bad massacre of protesters by government forces. Shall we forget about it, and claim it doesn’t happen here?

Hell no.


Because forgetting about it was exactly what I was suggesting? Those straw men burn real nice, don't they.


I named Kent State as an example of a US massacre of protestors, in response to a parent saying it doesn’t happen in the US. That’s all.


> I named Kent State as an example of a US massacre of protestors, in response to a parent saying it doesn’t happen in the US

Tianamen was a massacre, but it was much more than that. If you think these incidents are comparable, you may find reading about them rewarding.


They don’t have to be equivalent for Kent State to have been a US based massacre of protestors.


If we’re calling 4 people killed a massacre, then the word has just lost all meaning. It was horrible, criminal, and infamous, but massacre is hyperbole especially when compared to the thousand+ (someone else in this thread posted a BBC article citing 10,000) killed at Tiananmen it’s not even remotely similar.


Your post places Kent State and Tiananmen in equivalent counterpoint without comment. That is a rhetorical device generally used to point out equivalencies.

As such, you are getting blasted, and rightly so.

People are finally becoming tired of the "false equivalency" and the "well, just pointing it out" as these are the tools of the propaganda arms of the Chinese, the Russians, and, yes, the US governments in order to manipulate social media sites and people are striking back when they occur.

I find this a very useful form of social vaccination that has taken far too long to take root.


> Your post places Kent State and Tiananmen in equivalent counterpoint without comment

It doesn't actually, if you'd read the thread. Maybe you missed the edit? He was replying to someone who stated that there are no such massacres in the US. He pointed one out. That is all.

Parent

> Edit: I feel like there is going to be what-about-tism responses. So, before you respond, ask yourself if you can criticize the Chinese government, protest against it and make a change in China. Last time that happened in Tiananmen square, there was massacre. That does not happen in US.


It’s still comparing the deaths of four people to the deaths of well over a thousand. On every level of the comparison it’s dishonest, from antecedent to impact to aftermath. There really is no comparison except thst both events are called “massacres” which really just tells you more about how many need to die at government hands in the US to achieve that status. If the government killed 1022 civilians in a comparable event in the US... honestly it’s hard to imagine. At the very least, it would be one of the most significant events of the century, and would be a lot more notorious than the already infamous Kent State shootings.


Sources within the Chinese government put the death toll at 10,000 people


Equating Kent State with Tiananmen Square is very disingenuous. While the loss of life at Kent State (4 killed and several wounded) was reprehensible, it pales in comparison to the thousands killed and wounded in Tiananmen Square.


I didn't equate them. It was a counter example to the parent’s claim and nothing more.


It's not even the same type of thing. When police react to violent protesters, there is the risk of people getting killed. Now, you can debate in any given situation whether enough was done to minimize risk--and that is exactly what happened after Kent State. A national commission declared it was unjustifiable to send guardsmen armed only with lethal weapons to control campus protests. But at bottom, the purpose of police is to use the State's monopoly on violence to maintain order, and that always carries the risk of people getting killed.

That is completely different from state-directed killings intended to suppress political dissent, which the government then covers up and nobody ever talks about.


And Kent State is taught in US history classes in high schools.

Where is Tiananmen taught in Chinese schools?

We shouldn't become desensitized to Kent State lest we enable the equivalent of Tiananmen in the US.

But equating the scope of the two is actually giving in to Chinese propaganda.

I can condemn the bad things that the US does while still realizing that China is orders of magnitude worse.


For reference actual death toll of Tiananmen Square massacre 10K deaths.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-42465516


> I think Apple leads in privacy

How do you know that? Unless you have some special access to see the source, you are just taking their word on that.


Firstly in terms of market and brand perception Apple absolutely leads on privacy. That’s not really credibly contestable.

Next even if the source was published there’s no way to know of the published source is what is in the phones they sell. This is just as true of an AOSP or any open source phone unless you literally audit the source and compile the whole stack from source yourself.

However at least we have Apple on record and accountable, and it seems like their actual commercial interests align with their stated policies. Going with them seems like a reasonable risk to take, especially considering how poor we know for a fact most of their competition is in this regard.


> Firstly in terms of market and brand perception Apple absolutely leads on privacy. That’s not really credibly contestable.

I'd say it's highly contestable, especially since we have no actual direct proof that they do value privacy. Additionally, I don't care about brand perception, I care about reality.

> Next even if the source was published there’s no way to know of the published source is what is in the phones they sell.

So because they ship a poor OS that doesn't let you manage and control your own system means that there's no way to tell? Interesting, considering that a lot of other hardware works that way....

> This is just as true of an AOSP or any open source phone unless you literally audit the source and compile the whole stack from source yourself.

A) So? What if I want to do that?

B) The point of open-sourcing everything isn't so that everyone can audit everything everytime. It's so that we can audit when we need to. I would never buy a car that doens't let me pop the hood if I wanted to make modifications, why can't the same be true for Apple's products?

> However at least we have Apple on record and accountable, and it seems like their actual commercial interests align with their stated policies.

Their commercial interests actually align to look like they care about privacy, while actually double-dipping. Additionally, they still cater to governments.

> Going with them seems like a reasonable risk to take, especially considering how poor we know for a fact most of their competition is in this regard.

I completely agree that their competition is awful, but that doesn't in any way mean that Apple is good.

In the end, none of what you said refutes my point: You are still reliant on Apple being honest.


> A) So? What if I want to do that?

So what if you do ? You can't.

Android isn't really open source. They let you look at some unimportant parts of it, that's all. It's a token gesture at best, or deliberately deceptive at worst.

> The point of open-sourcing everything isn't so that everyone can audit everything everytime. It's so that we can audit when we need to

But you can't audit the most important parts of Android, as they are closed-source. Hell, even Google doesn't have access to the source of the most important bits such as the baseband firmware.


> So what if you do ? You can't.

That is my complaint. There are plenty of other operating systems where I can. The fact that Apple won't let me implies that they are hiding something.

> Android isn't really open source. They let you look at some unimportant parts of it, that's all. It's a token gesture at best, or deliberately deceptive at worst.

I agree, but this is whataboutism. Android being shitty doesn't give Apple the right to be shitty.


> There are plenty of other operating systems where I can.

Name 1 OS + hardware combination where you have the ability to fully audit every part of security-sensitive software. I'll wait...

> Android being shitty doesn't give Apple the right to be shitty.

No, but you can whine about stuff you're never ever going to get, or you can just pick the least problematic option available. Currently that's Apple.


> Name 1 OS + hardware combination where you have the ability to fully audit every part of security-sensitive software. I'll wait...

https://www.fsf.org/resources/hw/systems + any open source os

That aside: Just because we have shitty foss offerings doesn't mean Apple has a good offering.

> No, but you can whine about stuff you're never ever going to get, or you can just pick the least problematic option available. Currently that's Apple.

A) Currently that is not Apple. There are many other systems that do a much better job of protecting your privacy that Apple.

B) I'll choose to whine about things that I'm "never going to get". I'm in the business of reality, not wishful thinking. Just because Apple is more convenient when it comes to privacy, doesn't mean it solves the privacy problem, and sweeping that lie under the rug doesn't make it any less of a lie.


>> Name 1 OS + hardware combination where you have the ability to fully audit every part of security-sensitive software. I'll wait... >https://www.fsf.org/resources/hw/systems + any open source os

OMG, I don't even.... You do realise none of those are phones right?

>That aside: Just because we have shitty foss offerings doesn't mean Apple has a good offering.

The contention was that they lead, not that they are perfect.

>A) Currently that is not Apple. There are many other systems that do a much better job of protecting your privacy that Apple.

Name one. I really don't know of any. Android is a security car crash. The MS offering is effectively nonexistent.

The fact is there is a very consistent consensus among security professionals that iOs is the only platform that's even close to being secure.

>B) I'll choose to whine about things that I'm "never going to get". I'm in the business of reality, not wishful thinking.

And yet in a thread about phones where you're asked what systems you can compile your own stack on you give a list of OS friendly laptops and servers; you reframe a thread on which is the best option to one about whether that option is 'good'; then invoke vague assertions about 'other systems' without backing that up in the slightest. Bearing in mind the last time you were asked to back up a statement you changed the subject completely, I hold out little hope.


I apologize, as I was indeed not talking specifically about phones, but computing devices in general. I can see how that can be confusing since the original article is about phones.

In regards to phones:

Just because we don't have a good alternative doesn't make Apple a good one. It is a fact that we don't know what they do with your private data. You can't say that their system is the best if you don't actually know what it does. All you can do is guess.


> You can't say that their system is the best if you don't actually know what it does. All you can do is guess.

But that's true for everything.

It's simply impossible to have a computing device where you can be sure of every part being safe without trusting other people's judgement. You'd have to start by studying the VHDL of every chip in your computer, that's going to take you a while. Then check the software and hardware that turns that into a photomask and verify that the actual silicon produced doesn't have any hidden backdoors (that's difficult enough). You'd have to own your own equipment for producing the chips (can't trust the manufacturers)

Once you'd have the hardware completed, you'd have to check every single line of code, not just the OS kernel, but every compiler used (you've got a bootstrapping problem here, do you trust the compiler that compiled the compiler ?), every bit of userland software. Hundreds of millions of lines of code.

And even after you've done all of this, all you've proven is that you didn't find a backdoor, not that there isn't one. If you want to be really sure, you'd need formal proof of everything, which is going to add at least a couple of thousand additional years to the whole exercise.

Basically, what you want is a pipe dream. You can't do this alone, you have to trust other people at some point. So then the question becomes: who do you trust ?


> So then the question becomes: who do you trust ?

Definitely not a multinational corporation who has lied to it's users in the past, and has compromised their privacy and security.

I trust companies who put their money where their mouth is, and provide me access to inspect the systems that they have built.

Yes, you can't ever really know for sure if there is a back door or not. There's no way to prove a negative. But blindly trusting someone who is clearly hiding something seems naive at best.


And yet you have repeatedly asserted that there are better options.


There are: LineageOS without gapps or anything is a much better option.

I won't say that it is a good option, as it clearly isn't. But at least they give you some control of your data. Apple doesn't really give you any.


Weird. I have a P20 Pro and have no issues and I really like the hardware.

The issue with unlocked bootloader is that Huawei doesn't provide their images online for download. If you put custom rom on it there is no way to go back to stock.


Can't you return it to wherever you purchased it?


I recently bought the "Huawei Mate SE 4G LTE" for my parents because they needed a phone upgrade. I thought I was buying a bargain phone at less than $205 USD, and it turns out it actually is really good. Strange how good it is at that price.


Strange like the government in China is subsidizing it?


More like strange how Apple can charge as much as they do because their brand is targeting the "luxury" market.


Apple always did that. It's not entirely vain.

!) they led the pack, their brand has value (stores waiting line) 2) they push the price as high as it can be (cold but smart) 3) their products often have higher level of finish <= this is worth a lot, very often you have lower priced product with almost the same specs.. but a ton of 'almosts' create a shitty product. It's surprisingly costly to push a few percent above the pack.


And their profit margin is “only” 20-25%. That’s high compared to the rest of the industry, but not ludicrously so.

I think it’s a lower margin than luxury watches or clothes, say, where you’re mostly paying for the label, and more comparable to something like luxury cars, where they clearly have to invest a lot in design, materials and manufacturing to make a decent product.

(Having said that, a quick google suggests Rolex’s margin is only about 30%, so maybe all these businesses are more similar than I realized.)


iPhones represent about 15% of global smartphone shipments, but over 90% of profits. Google intended to commoditise smartphones with Android and largely achieved that aim; nobody is making much money from Android handsets. iOS (and the luxury cachet of the brand) gives Apple a moat that allows them to make meaningful profits on their devices.

Apple's operating margin hovers around 22%, but their gross margin on iPhones is well over 50%. A lot of the difference is tax trickery - Apple funnel a large proportion of profits to offshore companies, which doesn't appear on their balance sheet.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Base_erosion_and_profit_shifti...

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/06/world/apple-taxes-jersey....


It is also worth noting Apple rarely subsides its Hardware Product, and I cant record one that ever existed. From Cables, Hobbies, or other smaller gadget they all have nearly the same gross margin. As a matter of fact the pricing structure of Apple's hardware are the easiest part to understand.

Compare to others, Google subsidise Android development with Ads from Search Engine, Huawei cover most of the R&D expense via their Industry leading telecom infrastructure market, Sony has lot of business to cover for their every losing money Mobile handset, Samsung Electronics, has NAND / DRAM and Semi Fab for their bottom line as well as being a group of larger Samsung.

It is not that Apple made lots of money covering the industry 90% of profits, it is that everyone else aren't making money at all. And in the long run, those who cant get enough cash flow will die out. In 2017 the top 5 brand manage 60% of market shares, nearly 10% higher then last year. We are looking at 65% this year, and very likely in a few years time, Apple, Samsung, Huawei, Vivo / OPPO, Xiaomi will cover 80%+ of market.


Maybe this isn’t what you’re talking about, but aren’t their storage prices excessively high?

You pay a lot for a 500G or 1TB SSD from Apple, vastly more than competitors. I always assumed their margin was higher on the higher tiers.


How on Earth is Rolex' margin only 30%!


Not sure if this is a serious question, but it takes some serious cash to market products at that level.

There is a reason why those brands stay in the high end price brackets over decades. It's not an accident and it's not just a trend. Companies like that have more than one expertise - their core competence like watch making - and top notch marketing departments. That stuff costs a lot of money.


I did not consider that, thanks!

It's interesting to think that luxury brands still have such comparable margins. I guess one could say that marketing is their commodity.


[flagged]


This sort of attack will get you banned here. Please read https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html and follow the rules when posting.


I had a similar experience with a Huawei Mate 2 a few years ago. I used it for a year or two, then gifted it to someone who needed a new smartphone but couldn't afford one.

Their devices seem to be incredible values compared to the US domestic market.


>Strange how good it is at that price.

The margins on flagship phones are substantial; most Chinese brands are happy to make fairly slim profits on hardware, or none at all in the case of Xiaomi. Most of the cost of the components in a flagship represents the R&D and infrastructure costs incurred at the cutting edge. Mid-priced handsets from Chinese brands use slightly older components, which aren't drastically lower in performance but are drastically cheaper.

There's an odd sort of trickle-down effect - people who buy $800 flagships are effectively subsidising the price of $200 mid-range handsets.


Try Nokia 6.1 in the same price range, available with US LTE and receiving monthly security updates.


Isn’t this the same company that’s barred from providing parts to US government systems - because their hardware has been found with advanced roots?


I think that was ZTE, but may be mistaken

Edit: I went and looked it up, as far as the DoD is concerned, they're both verboten from usage in official DoD capacities it seems, and from being sold on military bases.

https://www.cnet.com/news/pentagon-reportedly-bans-sale-of-h...


The UK security apparatus is nervous about Huawei's involvement in national infrastructure too - to the point that there's a Huawei Cyber Security Evaluation Centre (HCSEC) [1].

1: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/huawei-cyber-secu...


Maybe the NSA found something when they hacked into Huawei's servers.

https://www.pcworld.com/article/2110960/nsa-hacked-into-serv...

Does anyone have evidence that Huawei's "hardware has been found with advanced roots" ?


> Does anyone have evidence that Huawei's "hardware has been found with advanced roots" ?

Yes, Huawei's products are known to be compromised [1]. Which shouldn't be surprising, given the founder's PLA roots.

[1] https://krebsonsecurity.com/tag/huawei/


No, it's pure propaganda. There's never been any evidence at all that Huawei has exported a compromised device. But there's been a powerful propaganda effort: the US government spews baseless accusations about Huawei, the US media reports on this without questioning it in the slightest, and US citizens then believe it whole heartedly.

In the end it doesn't really matter. Huawei delivers tremendous value for the money and so they are growing fast in Europe, Asia and Africa. The free market is stronger than even the most devoted propagandists.


Yup.

Also notable you got two quick replies, that both left out the Huawei part of the ban. I'm curious if you also get downvotes. Probably just my imagination tho here.

https://www.theverge.com/2018/5/2/17310870/pentagon-ban-huaw...


Personally, I’d never be comfortable owning such equipment.


I actually pretty quickly found a link of the Pentagon ban and updated my post to comment as such. So far sitting at +6 vote wise-for whatever it's worth.


No, that was ZTE.


It is by number of units sold, not revenue, and with Samsung at first place.


Exactly this. Apple is laughing all the way to the bank.


About to post dirty words that seemingly get me downvotes dispite HN being a place for discussion...

I find samsung quality medium at best. They charge top of the line prices and have really bright phones and TVs... However their hardware has broken multiple times and their smart TVs are annoying slow for something you pay 1,000 USD for. (my grandpa bought said TV)

Then Apple, oh boy, either Apple has a marketing team that patrols HN or they have rabid fanboys. It is never good for consumers or developers to have proprietary hardware and development kits. I dont understand the relationship between Customer and Apple. Customer constantly gets screwed and they love it. I dont understand it, maybe its a comfort/reliable thing, but in 2018 use-ability seems pretty standard in every phone/app.

Maybe this is true because profit feeds itself, a company gets big and uses that to get bigger. The bigger the margin between revenue and profit, the more successful=more TV ads=more profit.

I find this a very frustrating situation for everyone who has Apple or Samsung products. But it looks like there is no end in sight, and Samsung has a very active Reddit marketing team that will downvote/destroy anything negative.


The reason you're getting downvotes is because you're throwing around some serious accusations without any evidence to back them up.


If someone in the US isn't buying Apple or Samsung, what do you suggest they buy?

Your opinion that "it is never good for consumers or developers to have proprietary hardware and development kits" isn't much of an argument, it's just an opinion.


Proprietary system make it vastly easier to screw/control consumers.

I recall once owning a Verizon phone where you had to both buy it outright and pay $10 per month to use the gps. Only partners were allowed to make apps so it was impossible for someone to just turn around and make a mapping app for less money.

You can just not provide updates to drivers ensuring that people are stuck buying new devices to use a newer OS.

You can make it increasingly hard to get official parts/services by using non standard parts and controlling access to such.

I don't think its some much an opinion as pretty obvious.


You can just not provide updates to drivers ensuring that people are stuck buying new devices to use a newer OS.

That has nothing to do with being “proprietary”

Apple is releasing OS 12 later this year for the iPhone 5S released in 2012. How many Android phones from 2015 let alone 2012 are still supported by the manufacturer?

To go even further back with proprietary operating systems, my 2009 era Dell laptop is currently running Windows 10.


They are also making great laptops with the Matebook X Pro. I think we will see a lot of really good tech from them going forward.

All while Apple is putting out laptops that people don't want.


According to thier latest quarterly results - at least a few million want them.


Apple looks strong because their price per unit i.e. the "stupid" tax they make you pay on all their products is astronomically high. The actual demand and shipping volumes for their laptops has never set any records and the iPhone is sucking air now too. Their current lineup of products is mediocre at best when compared with what other companies are coming up with. Their biggest "innovations" lately are the touch bar (loser), removing useful ports/features that people like/love and dark mode. Really? Apple is the DeLorean of tech.


So if millions of people are choosing to spend thier money on Apple products, is it possible that thier opinions and priorities may be different than yours?

BTW, all you have to do is look st their quarterly results and see what their volume of iPhone and iPad sales were year over year to see that neither is “sucking wind”.


I think it’s fair to say the iPad is still relatively weak (relative to the phenomenal success of the iPhone, anyway). Unit sales have been flat for a while and revenue is down 5%.


> I think it’s fair to say the iPad is still relatively weak (relative to the phenomenal success of the iPhone, anyway).

By that standard so is literally every consumer product ever created. Take the comparison out of the picture though, and The iPad alone is a solid Fortune 500 company that didn’t even exist 9 years ago.


Everything in the consumer electronics industry is relatively weak compared to the success of the iPhone...


Ive talked to a few of those million people.

They dont know what they want.


I'm anxiously awaiting reports of their laptops' Linux compatibilities.


I have Huawei Maimang 5.

Huawei makes somewhat pricey, but boring mid-range products.

They sell so well around the world because they caught on consumer trends that are near invisible to most American marketing people, let alone SV based ones.

They target the rapidly growing global middle class.


Huawei is so popular in Europe countries, like France, UK etc


Not the biggest Apple fan but I've never had a good experience with $200 phones from Aliexpress/Gearbest. I always end up returning them. A lot of the times they come with weird "Android" portal OS's. Meaning you can't really access the play store normally and annoying things like that.

There is mandatory bloatware that you can't remove for services that not many westerners know about. Even the microphone and cameras are usually crappy on these. I switched from using a xiaomi redmi 5 to an old Galaxy S4, and the S4 is so much better. Even though the specs are A LOT lower, the S4 had better Microphone processing, better Camera (although not as many mega pixels), and believe it or not less restrictive bloatware.

I realize all these products are made in China, I just want to tell a cautionary tale. The PRICE is right but I think the manufactures don't really understand QUALITY and CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE the way Apple does.


Huawei isn't $200 phones from Ali express. The P20 Pro is a great phone.


Even the P20 lite is very impressive


Or the Honor 9 lite which BTW also belongs to Huawei. Amazing value for money.


There are now a range of cheap Chinese phones that run completely stock Android, with updates directly from Google.

https://www.android.com/one/

The cameras do tend to be worse than on a flagship, but what do you expect for 1/3 of the price? They have to save money somewhere. An older flagship can be good value for money, but you're getting a phone with several years of wear-and-tear rather than something brand new.


i bought my mom a Huawei Mate SE a couple months ago and she loves it.

I also read that Huawei's new Mate Pro notebook is getting rave reviews, it comes with a 3:2 ratio screen, hate the wide screen format most manufactures use nowadays


I read in another article that Apple usually is number one in the holiday quarter.


Apple is typically #1 in profit, but Samsung beats them on volume.

This makes a lot of sense when you think about it. Apple puts almost no effort towards building low end phones with thin profit margins. It's a huge market that has to be filled by other vendors.


Some crazy stat exists related to this. Something like Apple making less than 15% of global units while reaping some 80% of the global profits related to said units. In this case, I weigh profits as the best manifestation of the company's position and not units produced.


In 2016:

> BMO Capital Markets analyst Tim Long estimates that Apple accounted for 103.6% of smartphone industry operating profits in the third quarter. Its share is over 100% because other vendors lost money in the business, resulting in Apple having more smartphone profit than the industry netted overall. In the year-earlier period, Apple grabbed 90% of smartphone profits, Long said in a research report Thursday.

https://www.investors.com/news/technology/click/apple-iphone...


> This makes a lot of sense when you think about it

It makes even more sense when you realize it's volume that triggers anti-competitive laws.


And, you know, the part where the high-volume part of the market doesn't make any money.


It's amazing how much Huawei has grown. Here's an article about them from 2017:

http://knowledge.ckgsb.edu.cn/2017/03/27/china-business-stra...

they wanted to top the smartphone market, and just over a year later, here they are.


What's the software like on the Chinese phones, like Huawei and Xiaomi? Most hardware is similar enough that it doesn't really matter, the software defines the phone experience.


I have a P20 Pro. I quite like it and I even came from the pixel. It's mostly stock but with a bunch of useful features added.

I put Nova launcher on it though.

Some people don't like the aggressive power saving though.


I love Huawei stuff - mostly their cellular modems, as you can use their voice features on FreeSWITCH thanks to the encoding they support

Lots of great items from Huawei, even if Xiaomi gets most of the press, and Huawei could be more "open"


Hey, wasn't aware of that. You mean like? :

https://freeswitch.org/confluence/display/FREESWITCH/mod_gsm...

Looks like it's about 20 usd/dongle - if that's with voice that's pretty cheap for setting up a national pop for incoming calls/sms (which are usually free) - for routing to voip.


Exactly. Voice and SMS work both.

I love Huawei products, because as you said it is very cheap. The alternatives are several hundreds to get a working gsm pop.


Does anyone know how this will affect the development of 5g?




Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact

Search: