Huawei Set For £10m Laptop Push As UK-China Relations Deteriorate

Huawei said it is planning a £10 million marketing campaign for its MateBook laptop range in the UK, amidst deteriorating diplomatic relations between the UK and China.

The company said the investment is intended to show its commitment to the UK market, along with an earlier £10m investment into its UK retail arm.

Huawei entered the PC market in 2017 and quickly rose to become the No. 2 laptop brand in China.

The company said its laptop business is currently growing at a rate of 120 percent year-on-year worldwide.

Ecosystem

“Huawei is far more than a smartphone brand, and we’re proud of our extensive R&D investment to expand our ecosystem of products,” said Anson Zhang, managing director of Huawei’s UK consumer business group.

Huawei said the campaign would launch on 12 August across digital channels, national television, catch-up TV and retail.

It focuses on the company’s flagship MateBook X Pro 2020, which featuers an emerald green edition, as well as Huawei’s broader range of premium laptops.

Huawei is promoting the laptops as part of a broader strategy around networked devices that focuses on its popular smartphones.

Last month the company said it would launch three flagship Huawei Experience stores and service centres in London and Manchester as part of the retail plan, creating 100 jobs.

And earlier in the summer, Huawei highlighted its “ongoing commitment” to providing connectivity technologies in the UK in full-page advertisements in UK newspapers, ahead of a government review into the company’s participation in the UK’s 5G networks.

‘Seriousy poisoned’

But in July the British government said it would require UK operators to remove all Huawei 5G equipment from their networks by 2027.

The move followed months of anti-Huawei pressure by the United States, along with a deterioration in relations with China that accompanied the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, which began in Wuhan, China.

In a lengthy press conference last week, China’s ambassador to the UK, Liu Xiaoming, said relations between the two countries had been “seriously poisoned”.

He said he hoped the UK would “provide an open, fair, transparent and non-discriminatory environment for Chinese investment so as to bring back the confidence of Chinese businesses in the UK”.

The Foreign Office said the UK government would “work to maintain positive, constructive engagement with the Chinese government”.

But foreign secretary Dominic Raab also stressed the importance of China “living up to its international responsibilities”.

Matthew Broersma

Matt Broersma is a long standing tech freelance, who has worked for Ziff-Davis, ZDnet and other leading publications

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