Huawei Watch Leaks: Guerilla Genius or Just Jumping the Gun?

By Tom Pritchard on at

Over the weekend it appeared as though Huawei had 'accidentally leaked' its Android Wear smartwatch ahead of the official announcement. But what was it really? Was it a mix-up caused by a rookie member of the marketing team, or was it actually a genius way to get people talking about Huawei's stuff?

In case you missed this story over the weekend (maybe you were out enjoying life), two things happened. The first 'leak' was the placement of an advert for the Huawei Watch in Barcelona's airport. Saturday also saw promotional videos for the Huawei Watch appear on the company's YouTube channel, only to be taken down by the next day.

As annoying as it can be sometimes, leaked information gets a lot of attention in the world of tech journalism and some companies are bound to try and take advantage of that. In the last couple of weeks Samsung has been offering up numerous teasers about the Galaxy S6, even going so far as hosting a website that made fun of the press's constant need to report on every single rumour. Even HTC, a company plagued by leaks of its flagship hardware, was accused of deliberately leaking false information to throw people off what was actually going on.

So why wouldn't Huawei throw a few bits and pieces out into the open and drum up some buzz for its press conference?

The Huawei watch advert was placed in Barcelona's airport after all, and since it was the day before MWC was set to begin you can be sure there were journalists from all over the world passing through. At least one of them had to spot the advert and realise it wasn't supposed to be there.

Or I could be wearing too much tin foil around my head, because an airport is a prime location when it comes to advertising thanks to all the thousands of people passing through everyday.

It's totally possible that the whole kerfuffle was just down to miscommunication and human error. YouTube does let people schedule up videos in advance, and hitting the wrong date is more than possible. It's probably not because of a mistype, since the videos went up on the last day of February, but these things do happen. God knows I've mis-scheduled things plenty of times in the past.

A similar error could easily have happened with the advert in the airport. I'll admit it is slightly odd that both of them would happen around the same time, but it's not outside the realm of possibility. The run up to a big announcement is going to be rather stressful for the marketing department, so plenty of mistakes are going to happen here and there.

Whatever actually happened, Huawei is hardly going to own up to deliberately leaking its products to generate interest. It definitely has a lot to gain by doing so, given that its not really taken off as a brand in Europe and the US. Then again, if it was caught it would also have an awful lot to lose.

Whatever happened it definitely drummed up some buzz, so I doubt Huawei's execs are complaining too much.

Featured image from Android Central