Chinese electronics giant, Huawei, is opening a new Research and Development facility in Helsinki, Finland, home country of mobile phone competitor Nokia. The $90 million R&D venture will start with 30 employees whose purpose will be “optimizing the user experience of existing operating systems such as Android and Windows Phone 8" and is expected to grow over the next five years to as many as 100 employees...
“We believe the key to building our brand is to provide consumers with a reliable and differentiated user experience,” Huawei VP for Central, Eastern and Nordic Europe Kenneth Fredriksen said in a statement. “The open and innovative environment in Finland is an ideal place for Huawei to strengthen our global R&D capabilities for devices, creating opportunities for both Huawei and the Finnish telecommunications industry.”
Nokia and Huawei are ready to fight
Finland is a pretty ideal place to find engineers to work on mobile devices, as Nokia has laid off plenty of employees in the past year. It could be said that Nokia initiated the turf war by moving some of their production to Huawei's homeland, China, back in February. Despite strong sales of their Lumia line of Windows Phone handsets, the Finnish manufacturer has been struggling, going even so far as to sell their own headquarters, only to rent it from the new owners.
Both countries offer something different to each of the companies setting up shop there. Having long been on the vanguard of mobile technology, Nokia will benefit from China's cheap labor force. Huawei, on the other hand, will be able to harness the know-how of Finland's engineers to hone their skills in the mobile operating system arena.