Huawei Connect 2019 (Video)

by Dave Michels

It’s been a few years since I’ve been to a Huawei event, and boy a lot has changed. Here’s my onsite video from Huawei Connect, followed by a few photos below.

Huawei Connect 2019 from Dave Michels on Vimeo.

The big surprise was WeLink. This is Huawei’s Workstream Collaboration solution, and it looks impressive. It’s a mobile-first solution.

Inspired by consumer apps (WeChat), but the UI is tailored for enterprise use cases. Uses a modular architecture for customized implementations. Apps can be found in the WeLink app store, or you can build your own apps with WeLink APIs and SDKs. “WeLink connects customers, partners, and Huawei to build an enterprise-exclusive workplace.”

As with most Huawei solutions, it’s infused with AI. For example, it knows which Jin Chan you are likely trying to reach. There’s also a WeLink virtual assistant that understands spoken commands. WeLink identifies frequent contacts, favorite groups, important emails, and important messages. The search engine works differently for individuals and teams. It has facial recognition, speech recognition, image recognition, and OCR.

I don’t fully understand how this works, but WeLink features end-to-end chip level encryption using the Huawei Kirin chip, so this may only work with Huawei smartphones.

Another feature that stood out as unique is the embedded email client. Google is also embracing email within its Hangouts Chat. I think it makes a lot of sense because email + team chat messaging can easily represent the vast majority of a user’s communications. The WeLink inbox self organizes internal, external, and important mail messages.

WeLink is currently deployed throughout Huawei, and the company claims 190,000 employees are using it in 172 countries and has integrated it with more than 600 “mini-programs.”

A few photos from Huawei Connect:

Met up with Zeus Kerravala in Shanghai. They kept him pretty busy with all the network news. They seemed particularly excited about passive optical networking (PON).

I found Shanghai oddly familiar.

The age old question: imported or domestic?

Huawei started the event with a very nice reception for analysts. This included professional dancers, live music, and a very full and international buffet. Very classy.

Large Expo Hall.