Huawei phones attract buyers with their high-end features at 'lite' prices. Photo: iStock

Some people welcome the loss of a mobile phone as a good excuse to buy a new one. But of course this can be costly. Last week my buddy lost his phone and sought my advice on a replacement, knowing that I was a retired telecom reporter.

I went with him to shop for a new phone and after half an hour, we arrived at almost the same conclusion: Buy the same Huawei P10 phone he lost for HK$3,500 (US$447).

However, one does not want to overspend on a phone, so we looked for a bargain. But unfortunately most of the new phones we saw were priced at more than HK$5,000, other than “lite” versions.

So in the end, buying another Huawei P10 seemed to be a fit solution, because it was priced as a lower-end version but provided high-end features.

That might also explain why the world’s No 3 mobile-phone maker behind Apple and Samsung recorded a 30% surge in sales to 236 billion yuan (US$37.55 billion) last year.

Huawei shipped 153 million phones in 2017, according to Andy Ho, the Huawei Consumer Business Group’s vice-president for the Greater China region.

Huawei has not officially announced its annual report for 2017 yet, but the performance of its mobile-phone operation is being closely watched by its rivals.

However, Huawei’s expansion plans met headwinds after US mobile operator AT&T withdrew its sales of Huawei phone during the Consumer Electronics Show last month after Washington expressed national-security fears.

Ho said Huawei had been seeking to break into the US market. Although the AT&T pullout was a setback, the Chinese firm will continue to work hard and focus on consumers, he said.

Meanwhile, Huawei has set an aggressive target of 40% growth in the Hong Kong market this year with 10 new models, including medium- to high-grade phones, a tablet computer and a laptop in the pipeline.

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