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Xiaomi, Qualcomm announce new execs

Posted: 15 Jun 2015     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Xiaomi  Qualcomm  3G  4G  smartphone 

The shift of momentum in China's smartphone market just went closer to the surface when Qualcomm named the company's former executive as its new China chair, while Xiaomi announced the hiring of Qualcomm's China chief as its new senior vice president.

Qualcomm picked Frank Meng, who served as SVP and president of Qualcomm Greater China from 2008 to 2010, as a new chair heading up its Greater China operations.

Meanwhile, Xiaomi, the world's fastest growing smartphone vendor, didn't miss a beat. It immediately disclosed Xiang Wang, president of Qualcomm Greater China and SVP of Qualcomm, has now joined Xiaomi. The marketing-savvy Chinese company also released the following photograph, in which the former Qualcomm executive (left) already looks chummy and pretty comfortable with Xiaomi's co-founders.

Xiang Wang (left) standing next to Jun Lei (centre), Xiaomi's CEO and founder, and Bin Lin (right), Xiaomi's president

Xiang Wang (left) standing next to Jun Lei (centre), Xiaomi's CEO and founder, and Bin Lin (right), Xiaomi's president and also co-founder

Of course, personnel changes happen all the time. Jump-shipping executives are not uncommon especially in a competitive mobile marketplace in China.

But big changes at top management levels speaks volumes of a tough spot Qualcomm is in these days on the Chinese market. It's no small matter for Qualcomm, because China accounts for half of Qualcomm's overall revenues.

What has ailed Qualcomm, however, isn't just a 14-month Chinese government investigation into anti-competitive practices, a big fine ($975 million) the company agreed to pay and persisting problems it faces in collecting royalty on patents as some of its licensees in China are not fully reporting their sales of licensed products.

It is rather the cut-throat competition on China's smartphone chip market that appears exhausting Qualcomm.

"Qualcomm is losing its leadership position on 3G due to the growing momentum of Spreadtrum. Qualcomm is also getting weaker on 4G due to MediaTek's multi-core strategy," explained one Shenzhen-based Chinese mobile industry observer who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

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