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The move appears to signal the intent of Baidu to create a hardware ecosystem that will complement its already prominent internet services.
Beijing-based internet company Baidu might be only a week away from launching the brand’s first-ever smartphone. According to a Bloomberg report, the smartphone represents another addition to Baidu’s growing portfolio of smart gadgets.
However, the move appears to signal the intent of Baidu to create a hardware ecosystem that will complement its already prominent internet services.
In a similar manner to Google and Amazon, the firm had recently developed smart speakers and displays for the home. And now, the smartphone would be the latest hardware addition. According to a company spokesperson, the smartphone is expected to be unveiled within the next week.
Here’s What to Expect
At the moment, it remains unclear what might be the ultimate aims of Baidu with the smartphone introduction. However, for a couple of reasons, it might be safe to say that the internet giant will not go all into the business.
Shawn Yang, Managing Director at Blue Lotus Capital Advisors, shares a similar opinion in that Baidu might soft-pedal on its newfound smartphone interest. Admitting that the smartphone market is very mature, Yang says:
“It’s tough to make an impact just from a software angle.”
For all intents and purposes, the mobile phone market is fully congested and hardly doing any good numbers at the moment. For example, the smartphone market suffered a double-digit loss in 2022 with only Apple and Samsung sharing the spoils of the year between themselves. Whereas, the same year left other companies scrambling for various means to at least, recoup the costs they incurred from partnership deals and software acquisitions.
Baidu Remains Focused on AI
Despite the uncertainties around its upcoming business venture, Baidu remains committed to innovative technology, especially artificial intelligence (AI).
Recall that the firm was one of the first Chinese companies to provide an alternative to OpenAI’s ChatGPT. In March, Baidu introduced its Ernie Bot, having invested vigorously in AI for many years. More so, the company also maintains that it plans to embed its AI tools into all its smart gadgets, search, autonomous driving, and many more of its product offerings.