Do you have a role model? Most of us do. Or, at least, most of us have had a role model somewhere in our lives. Perhaps parents at first, then an older sibling, or relative, maybe even a classmate or a teacher.
Role models are everywhere and not just those who influenced us when we were young.
Role model is a person whose behavior, example, or success is or can be emulated by others, especially by younger people.
That definition means we can broaden role models to include, well, influencers; whether social, or technology. Guess who tech’s most important role model is these days?
So says me. And I’m in good company because Chinese tech giant Huawei’s CEO says Apple is his role model. Chance Miller explains:
Zhengfei explained that Apple is his “role model” when it comes to user privacy. Apple has historically took a strong stance on protecting user privacy, and that appears to be what Zhengfei is looking to follow at Huawei.
Need, meet opportunity.
Why is Huawei’s CEO cozying up to an Apple policy?
Because a growing proportion of governments in the developed world are banning everything Huawei over worries the tech giant is in bed with the Chinese government and will embed methods for China to spy on Huawei’s customers.
By getting in bed with Apple’s position on policy– even to the point of calling Apple a role model– Huawei takes a position on the right side of privacy and security; even beyond Google, Facebook, and Amazon, among others.
Would Huawei give customer or user information to the Chinese government?
CEO Ren Zhengfei:
We will never do such a thing. If I had done it even once, the US would have evidence to spread around the world. Then the 170 countries and regions in which we currently operate would stop buying our products, and our company would collapse
Blah blah blah. Cry me a river.
Whether Huawei’s products are literal spies for the Chinese government has yet to be proven, but perception is reality, and Zhengfei has to deal with reality the best way he can, and it would seem the public relations folks in China are as good at dealing with a crisis as they are in the good old U.S. of A.
Antennagate? Bendgate? Touch disease? MobileMe? Mapsgate? Slowgate or Batterygate?
Apple has had its own share of public relations issues and managed to get through them all to become the technology industry’s role model.
Role model? As in design model.
What do all Windows PC and Chromebooks look like these days? Macs. What do all smartphones look like these days? iPhones. Who works diligently to sell AirPod knock-offs?
Should Huawei’s CEO be believed? Sure. Why not? It won’t matter.
Apple is the premier technology role model of the 21st century. Whatever design tack Apple takes, much of the industry is sure to follow, and when they go it alone on some newfangled technology trend, whatever design Apple finally adopts becomes the direction every competitor goes.
Apple is the industry’s only role model. Huawei’s CEO is smart to adopt Apple as a public friend.