CHINA - USA Huawei employees punished for tweeting with Iphone

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The tweet, sent from Huawei's official Twitter account, was a New Year's greeting, "Happy #2019".

The arrest of its chief financial Officer Meng Wanzhou in Canada in early December - on a USA extradition request linked to sanctions-breaking business dealings with Iran - has led to a surge of patriotism in China with companies encouraging staff to buy Huawei smartphones.

However, Twitter displays which devices have been used to send a tweet - something many companies and celebrities with brand deals fall foul to - and seeing as Apple is a major Huawei competitor, this was allegedly seen as harmful to the Huawei brand. As the tweet couldn't be sent via a desktop system, someone used an iPhone as a workaround. In October, reports revealed that Samsung took legal action against its brand ambassador in Russian Federation.

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Reuters says the two people responsible for the tweet have had their salaries reduced 5,000 yuan (~$730) per month over the error, as it showed procedural incompliance and management oversight.

One incident happened with BlackBerry as well when Alicia Keys, who was the company's creative director at the time, tweeted from her iPhone. This was more than a one-time thing - which it was for Huawei, it sounds like. Huawei is in a stiff competition with Apple and that can be clearly seen from Huawei's P-series smartphones at loggerheads for market sales with Apple's iPhone. Even T-Mobile Chief Executive John Legere promoted Samsung Mobile's Note 3 phablet using his iPhone 5s.

It is not the first time use of the Apple product has given cause for embarrassment. The Korean company sued a brand ambassador for $1.6 million for a similar marketing misstep that involved an iPhone. They especially don't tolerate any sort of mistakes internally. The account was later brought back by Samsung but all the tweets made from a different phone were deleted. The content itself was trivial, significantly spicy, the four words that were displayed directly in the message were: "Via Twitter for iPhone".