Huawei assurances as CCK fake phone deadline looms

By Omondi Julius Odera, Kampala, Uganda

Huawei, a leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider, has confirmed the originality of its handsets following a recent notice from CCK to switch off over 3 million counterfeit mobile phones in the country, sparking fears among Kenyans owning devices made in China.

“Huawei has created a competitive edge by introducing original devices that ensure quality user experience at affordable costs for Kenyans at all levels; as a result of our heavy investment in customer centric research and development (R&D),” said Wind Li, Huawei Kenya Representative Office CEO. “As a global ICT leader serving 45 out of the top 50 global operators and a third of the world’s population, Huawei adheres to the laws and regulations of the countries we operate in while meeting all the product requirements,” he added.  

The company’s smartphone portfolio in Kenya include Huawei IDEOS, IDEOS X5, S7 Slim, and most recently Ascend Y100, Huawei Media Pad and Honor available in Safaricom shops. Gaga and Boulder, also Huawei devices, are available at Orange Shops. Huawei has customer care executives in all operators’ shops, and five care centers in Nairobi with service centers at Malibu Telecom and Telebell at View park Towers.

Francis W. Wangusi, Director General of the CCK, said: “The attention of the Commission has been drawn to a misconception in the mobile phones market that all handsets manufactured in China or by Chinese firms are counterfeit. The Commission wishes to state that China has globally recognized companies whose products and solutions are being used worldwide by top operators, and which meet CCK requirements in respect to quality and type approval.

Consumers are therefore, advised to verify whether the handsets they wish to buy are genuine by sending the IMEI of the handset via SMS to 1555. The response received from this system which has been set up in liaison with device manufacturers should be the only fool-proof yardstick for determining whether the handset is genuine or not. Members of the public are also advised to purchase mobile phones from vendors who are duly licensed by CCK and should demand to see the CCK type approval certificate of the model of the handset they wish to buy.”

Huawei has partnered with Kenyan operators such as Safaricom to bring smartphones in the market.  “Safaricom has had a long standing relationship with Huawei whose technology ranks among the best in the world. The IDEOS was one of our first affordable smartphone and the fact that it became one of our best-selling phones in the past year is testament to its quality and reliability in the Kenyan market,” said Bob Collymore, CEO Safaricom.

Huawei is the world’s second largest telecom solutions provider and it has entrenched its presence in the global high-end smartphone market with flagship models like Ascend P1 and Ascend D1 becoming bestsellers in China, West Europe, Japan, Australia, Canada, among other markets. Last year, Huawei sold 150 million consumer devices and smartphone shipments of 20 million units. In 2012, the company is expected to achieve revenue of US$9 billion, with smartphone shipments of 60 million units. Huawei is expected to launch Ascend P1 in Kenya this month, making it the second country in Africa after South Africa which launched last month.

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