Posted by Laura Fitch on June 25, 2010 11:00 AM
If Chinese electronic companies have their way, techies worldwide will soon be reaching over Apple’s latest gear on the store shelf for the Huawei handset in the back.
Lack of experience and knowledge in other industries—notably the auto industry—makes “Brand China” a tough sell.
In the telecommunications industry, however, Chinese companies have a chance at creating a breakout brand that will be recognized beyond the country’s borders.
Of course, China's nascent Silicon Valley will have to compete with Japan and South Korea for a corner of the Asian telecom market, and with giants such as Nokia for a piece of the global telecom industry.
As an indication of China's wireless ambitions, Agence France Press notes that Chinese companies formed the largest bloc at the 2010 CommunicAsia and BroadcastAsia trade fairs in Singapore.
“With 257 booths displaying everything from sleek tablet computers to slim mobile phones with Chinese branding," AFP calls Chinese exhibitors "proof that the country is not just a cheap production center for Western firms.”
Chinese companies have been assembling telecom products for other countries—and, yes, in many cases copying such technology—for so long, that there is a strong local knowledge base to draw from to create and construct these products in domestic companies.
This experience should enable them to create products that have a chance of competing internationally.
Keep an eye on how Chinese telecom companies choose to present themselves outside China, and whether their marketing methods pay off. — Laura Fitch in Beijing