Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Brian J. White highlights the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), 2014 events as Huawei Technology Co Ltd (SHE:002502) announces the introduction of Ascend Mate2 4G smartphone, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930) introduces new innovations and the competition for wearable technology increases as Epson and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) reveal their plans.

CES 2014

Yesterday, press conferences at 2014 International CES kicked off in Las Vegas, and Cantor’s analysts attended events hosted by a plethora of tech companies.

CES 2014: Huawei morphs into a formidable smartphone competitor

During yesterday’s press day, Huawei Technology Co Ltd (HSE:002502) focused on the introduction of the Ascend Mate2 4G smartphone, announced a goal to sell 80 million smartphones in 2014, and highlighted the sale of 17.5 million smartphones in 4Q:13. Huawei is not only an important router competitor to Cisco and Juniper Networks but is increasingly becoming a more important smartphone competitor in China to Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). Given Apple’s recently announced iPhone agreement with China Mobile, Apple is now focused on China like never before. We believe the Ascend Mate2 4G with a 6.1-inch screen and an amazing two days of battery life could finally provide Huawei with the global recognition that it has been seeking. In analysts view, Huawei is becoming a more formidable, long-term competitor to Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL); however, they believe the near-term impact of new innovations are more likely to be felt by marginal smartphone competitors, and to some extent, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930).

CES 2014: Samsung introduces new innovations

Given that Samsung is Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s biggest rival in the mobile device market and an important customer for our LCD universe, analysts were very interested in what Samsung would unveil at yesterday’s press event. After the presentation, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930) reported a profit miss for the December quarter. Samsung introduced new TV innovations that could ultimately be an incremental positive for Corning over the next 2-3 years. On the mobile device front, Samsung introduced the Pro series tablet family with a focus on the enterprise, but no new smartphones were announced. Given Apple’s history with the “Pro” name in its products (e.g., the MacBook Pro), analysts are interested to see how Apple responds.

CES 2014: Epson vs Apple competition for wearable technology

Analysts from Cantor also attended Epson’s press conference that solely focused on the company’s new wearable device portfolio. Going into this week’s International CES, they indicated that we felt “wearable technology” would likely be a major focus at the show. However, analysts still believe it will take Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to make this new area “cool” and fuel mass consumer adoption. Yesterday, Epson unveiled two new wrist-related innovations with the Pulsense family and the Moverio BT-200 Smart Glasses for augmented reality experiences. In their view, Epson provided attendees with a taste for what they expect will be a major theme this week, and they found the company’s innovations worthy of attention; however, analysts believe Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930) will prove to be difficult competitors for many of these early entrants.