Chinese telecom giant Huawei is entering the ride-sharing market with the launch of a standalone car-hailing app “Petal Chuxing.” The company looks for ways to expand its car-related business and diversify revenue sources as sales of its smartphones slow.
Why it matters: Huawei’s foray into ride-hailing is a natural extension of the company’s ambition to become a key player in the automotive space as the autonomous ride-hailing service has the potential to make up a significant percentage of new car sales in the long run.
Details: Huawei launched a ride-sharing app called “Petal Chuxing,” based on its navigation app “Petal Maps,” which allows users to request rides from multiple ride-hailing providers, state media publication National Business Daily reported on Friday.
- Users can now access two domestic ride-hailing companies — Shenzhou Zhuanche, a Chinese car rental firm Car Inc subsidiary, and state-backed Shouqi. Huawei is testing the service in Beijing, Shenzhen, and the eastern city of Nanjing, the report said.
- At a press conference last week, Huawei’s head of consumer business Richard Yu said that the company has made Petal Maps more competitive than similar offerings by seamlessly linking users’ Huawei handsets to the HarmonyOS-powered vehicles.
- A Huawei spokesperson declined to comment further when contacted by TechNode, saying the company will share more information once it is available.
Context: Huawei first launched its proprietary mapping service for overseas users in October 2020, a year after US sanctions barred the company from including Google software and services on its devices. The service now has 28 million users from over 160 countries.
- The company also obtained a permit to draw up high-definition maps in its home country in mid-2019, a stepping stone to developing its self-driving car technology.
- Chinese tech companies Alibaba and Meituan also operate ride-sharing aggregation platforms, while automakers such as Geely, FAW, and Dongfeng, have built their own ride-hailing apps to take on long-time market leader Didi Chuxing.