Sanchez: Smartphone

WHEN I lost my Samsung Galaxy and Cherry mobile to thieves last year, getting a new one was no longer an option. It was de rigueur. I would gladly give up the status symbol. No, smartphone has reached the point of necessity, not luxury.

The only question was which brand? I asked for advice. And did online research. Come crunch time, the only choice was Huawei.

And so do other consumers. Huawei is more popular in the Philippines. Aside from the wide range of phones offered by the Chinese telecommunications equipment provider, it also has deals with Smart and Globe for hardware.

By and large, I’m a satisfied customer. I used to buy a small speaker for my Prayer and Life Workshop sessions. Now there is no need. My unit is loud enough as a standalone device.

Who says Chinese products are shoddily made? Not this baby.

Besides the Safe Philippines Project, Huawei was also a “platinum sponsor” during the Philippine National Police’s 6th National Anti-Cyber Crime Summit held in March.

Recently, U.S. Ambassador Sung Kim reiterated his country’s concerns over Huawei technology, even as he said it’s up to the Philippine government to decide if it would allow the controversial Chinese firm in its Safe Philippines surveillance project.

Now I find my freedom to choose being curtailed by big government. As in, by the U.S. government and I’m bound by its policies, although I’m a Filipino citizen.

Last week, Google — which makes the Android operating system that Huawei uses in its handsets — has suspended the transfer of hardware, software or technical services to Huawei except what’s available via open source.

While Huawei’s smartphones is virtually absent in the US market for several years, last year saw it overtake Apple to become the world’s second-largest smartphone maker by market share — just behind Samsung.

Huawei has faced intense political pressure from the U.S. around its networking equipment. The U.S. government has taken extreme and unprecedented steps against Huawei, cutting it off from every U.S. partner at the risk of a long-term rupture in trade between the U.S. and China.

Acting communications minister Eliseo Rio says that in 10 years of operations the Chinese tech giant has given Manila no cause for concern. This, despite the repeated American allegations that the tech giant is a front for Chinese intelligence.

I want the market to do its magic. We learned from the Americans to minimize government’ role in the economy. So why are they interfering in the free market?


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