Huawei Expands Reach in Africa

Participation in Microsoft's 4Afrika Initiative Gives Chinese Player Greater Coverage


Earlier this month Microsoft launched the 4Afrika Initiative. The software company aims to invest $74 million over the next three years to support economic development in Africa. As part of the project Huawei has released a budget Windows Phone 8 device called the Huawei 4Afrika, which will be tailored for and exclusively available in some African countries.

4afrika

I was a little surprised that Microsoft had decided to work with Huawei on such a product. Given Microsoft's closer relationship with Nokia, coupled with Nokia's previous experience in similar development programmes including Nokia Money and Life Tools, I would have expected a Nokia phone to be the project's first offering. What's more, recent growth in Windows Phone 8 sales has mostly come from Nokia's Lumia products, particularly in emerging markets like India.

I believe Microsoft selected Huawei because it could provide the most affordable Windows Phone 8 handset. This is hugely important for consumers in Africa, where prices are not always subsidised by network operators and the average income is relatively low. The recent popularity of low-cost Chinese smartphones in East Asia and India shows how consumers are becoming increasingly persuaded by price and not brand.

Microsoft has said the Huawei 4Afrika is a variant of the Huawei W1. Our estimates from this month's Wholesale Pricing report put the Huawei W1 at about €30 less than Nokia's Lumia 620. The Huawei 4Afrika is reported to cost about $150 when it finally reaches retail stores.

Clearly Microsoft is making a big investment in Africa because there's so much potential growth in technology adoption, including smartphones. But I believe this is a bigger win for Huawei. The company will be able to use the 4Afrika Initiative to expand its distribution points across Africa. Huawei sees Africa as one of its fastest-growing markets outside China; this gives the collaboration with Microsoft added significance. I wouldn't be surprised to see Huawei make further similar announcements in the next month or so.

This entry was posted on February 12th, 2013 and is filed under Devices. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Posted By Digantam Gurung On February 12th, 2013


Comments
(There are no comments yet)
Leave a Comment

Hot News

Team Tweets

CCS Insight
Nokia confirms the sale of its Here mapping unit for €2.8 billion http://t.co/Toug9Ascax
Follow CCS Insight
Shaun Collins
RT @paolopescatore: BT 1Q 2015/16 results: Rev £4,278m (down 2%); £48m negative FX impact. Adjusted EBITDA £1,449m (up 1%). EPS of 6.7p (up…
Follow Shaun
Ben Wood
RT @engadgetmobile: Windows 10 is coming to these Lumia phones first http://t.co/PSBhqUGNPS
Follow Ben
Martin Garner
@here maps begins the next phase of its journey, being sold to @audi, @bmw and @daimler. Hopefully a good setup for staying independent
Follow Martin
Geoff Blaber
RT @oneplus: The #HYPE is real! Over 1,000,000 fans have reserved their #OnePlus2, in just 72 hours. http://t.co/7CBjiXrOgp http://t.co/tYA…
Follow Geoff
Nicholas McQuire
Selfie photobombed by a camel http://t.co/1yFP3qdsmJ
Follow Nicholas
Paolo Pescatore
It's all kicking off in Spain; football price war among Spanish telcos via @advancedtv http://t.co/Tx9McJ9iBr http://t.co/E7ogl94tT4
Follow Paolo
Marina Koytcheva
AR/VR device market to top $4bn in 2018. Check out @CCSInsight's new forecast: http://t.co/TgWX9M8FNM http://t.co/S4h6J9j9Za
Follow Marina
Kester Mann
AT&T quickly showing the rationale for its DirecTV purchase with a combined TV and mobile offer, All in One: http://t.co/O7IddkyLly
Follow Kester
Jasdeep Badyal
So 3 new handsets at #motolaunch. Underlines Lenovo's intent of using the Moto brand to target Samsung + others, esp. in developed markets.
Follow Jasdeep
George Jijiashvili
RT @CCSInsight: Nokia's Ozo hopes to inspire must-see VR content http://t.co/0DYZo6oYnD
Follow George
Rebecca Morley
RT @katietails: @HuaweiDevice Thanks so much - this is fab! :)
Follow Rebecca

Recent Blog Posts

Blog Post
Nokia: Two out of Three Here Divestment Leaves a Tighter Nokia As we covered last... Read more
Blog Post
Fox and the Hound Browser Power Battle Resurfaces Almost 20 years ago to th... Read more
Blog Post
Nokia Makes a 360 The Company Enters the Virtual Reality Camera Market At a... Read more
More blog

Latest Company News

Blog Post
Augmented and Virtual Reality Devices to Become a $4 Billion-Plus Business in Three Years CCS Insight Releases First Forecast of These Rising Technolo... Read more
More news