Huawei CEO admits being an Apple fan

In a fiercely competitive tech landscape, where titans of industry wage battles for supremacy in the lucrative smartphone market, a surprising statement has recently emerged from an unexpected source. Ren Zhengfei, the visionary founder and CEO of , one of China's tech behemoths, publicly professed his profound admiration for , the quintessential American rival.

The revelation took place during a discussion centered on the International Collegiate Programming Contest, an event proudly sponsored by Huawei. It was in this setting that Zhengfei expressed his genuine reverence for the excellence synonymous with Apple's products. “We often find ourselves pondering the secret behind the unparalleled quality of Apple's products. The disparity between our offerings and those of Apple is clear. I am genuinely delighted to have Apple as a mentor, affording us the invaluable opportunity to learn and compare. In this regard, it wouldn't be an exaggeration to label me an Apple enthusiast,” Ren remarked.

Huawei CEO Ren Zhengfei Expresses Admirations for Apple

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So, Zhengfei's declaration of admiration for Apple arrives amidst a backdrop of intense competition within the world's largest smartphone market. Huawei's latest cutting-edge models now engage in direct competition with Apple's formidable lineup.

It is crucial to revisit the events of 2019 when Huawei encountered a monumental setback. Finding itself ensnared in the web of a U.S. ban. This punitive measure exacted a heavy toll. Rendering Huawei bereft of access to essential components and depriving its devices of 's services and applications. These challenges have undeniably cast a long shadow over Huawei's presence in Western markets.

However, in a narrative that mirrors the phoenix rising from its ashes, Huawei has staged a remarkable resurgence. This revival has been spearheaded by the much-anticipated launch of the Mate 60. A premium smartphone boasting the formidable HiSilicon Brin 9000S processor, a chip engineered entirely in-house by Huawei. Also, this strategy mirrors Apple's playbook, as the Cupertino-based giant has long crafted its own processors to underpin its iconic devices.

Ren Zhengfei's unanticipated expression of admiration for Apple underscores a profound truth about the global tech industry: despite cutthroat competition, valuable lessons can emerge, and mutual respect can flourish. The founder of Huawei not only champions an open-minded stance toward foreign brands but also accentuates the vital importance of gleaning insights from one's competitors.

In this evolving narrative, we delve deeper into Ren Zhengfei's admiration for Apple. Dissecting its implications and the broader lessons it offers for the tech industry.

The Surprising Reverence for Apple

Ren Zhengfei's statement has sent ripples through the tech world. With many industry observers taken aback by his candid admission of admiration for Apple. In a landscape characterized by intense rivalry, it's not every day that a CEO of a major tech corporation openly extols the virtues of a competitor.

Also, the International Collegiate Programming Contest served as the unlikely backdrop for this revelation. It's worth noting that this contest, backed by Huawei, is a testament to the company's commitment to nurturing talent and fostering innovation in the tech sphere. It was during a discussion at this event that Ren Zhengfei offered his insights into what makes Apple's products stand out.

Learning from a Rival

At the heart of Ren Zhengfei's admiration for Apple lies an enduring commitment to learning from the best, even if they are perceived as rivals. This attitude is reminiscent of the age-old adage that “iron sharpens iron.” Zhengfei's acknowledgment of Apple as a “teacher” speaks volumes about his philosophy of continuous improvement.

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While it may seem unusual for a CEO to praise a competitor so openly, it underscores a fundamental truth about innovation in the tech industry. Innovation thrives in an environment where ideas are exchanged. Where competitors challenge each other to push the boundaries of what's possible. In this sense, Zhengfei's words serve as a reminder that healthy competition can be a catalyst for progress.

A Lesson in Resilience

Ren Zhengfei's revelation comes at a time when Huawei is navigating treacherous waters. The company's ban by the U.S. government in 2019 was a seismic event that sent shockwaves through the tech world. It resulted in Huawei facing a barrage of challenges. Including the loss of access to critical components and the absence of Google's services and apps on its devices.

Additionally, yet, Huawei's ability to bounce back, exemplified by the launch of the Mate 60, showcases the importance of resilience in the tech industry. Like Apple, which has weathered its own storms over the years, Huawei's determination to innovate and create its own processor, the HiSilicon Brin 9000S, is a testament to its unwavering commitment to delivering cutting-edge technology to its customers.

A Globalized Tech Ecosystem

Ren Zhengfei's words also underscore the interconnectedness of the global tech industry. In an era where supply chains stretch across continents and innovation knows no borders, it's increasingly evident that tech giants must navigate a complex web of international relationships. Zhengfei's willingness to express admiration for an American rival highlights the global nature of the tech landscape. Where collaboration and competition coexist.

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Guarding Against Xenophobia

Perhaps one of the most important lessons that can be gleaned from Ren Zhengfei's admiration for Apple is the need to guard against xenophobia in the tech industry. In an era where geopolitical tensions can spill over into the business world, it's essential to remember that innovation thrives when diverse perspectives are embraced.

Also, Zhengfei's stance serves as a stark contrast to the rising tide of nationalism and protectionism that has characterized some corners of the tech world. By acknowledging the strengths of a competitor from a different country, he reinforces the idea that innovation is a global endeavor that transcends borders and benefits from cross-cultural exchange.


Ren Zhengfei's admiration for Apple has a number of implications for the global tech industry. First, it suggests that Huawei is likely to continue to focus on innovation and quality in order to compete with Apple. This is good news for consumers, as it is likely to lead to better products and services.

Second, it suggests that the global tech industry is becoming increasingly interconnected, even in the midst of the US-China trade war. Additionally, companies from different countries are increasingly collaborating and competing with each other. And this is likely to lead to more innovation and progress.

Third, it suggests that the importance of learning from competitors is universal. Even the most successful companies can benefit from learning from their rivals. And this is a lesson that all businesses should keep in mind.


So, Ren Zhengfei's unexpected admiration for Apple has ignited a conversation within the tech industry and beyond. It reminds us that even in the midst of fierce competition, there is room for mutual respect and learning. It highlights the importance of resilience in the face of adversity and the interconnectedness of the global tech ecosystem.

Also, as we move forward in an increasingly complex and competitive tech landscape, Ren Zhengfei's words serve as a powerful reminder that innovation knows no boundaries. The tech giants of the world have much to gain from collaboration and an open-minded approach to their competitors. In the end, it is the consumers who stand to benefit from the continuous drive for excellence and innovation in the tech industry.

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