The ongoing trade war between Turkey and the US is mostly bad news for Turks, with the Lira in freefall. But there is a sliver of good news for one company: Turkish smartphone manufacturer Vestel, which saw a near 5% spike in share value on the back of an endorsement from President Recep Erdogan.
Speaking in Ankara, the Turkish president called for a retaliatory boycott of American electronic goods – particularly the Apple iPhone.
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“If they have iPhone, there is Samsung on the other side. And we have our own telephone brands,” CNBC reports Erdogan as saying. “We are going to produce enough for ourselves. We have to serve better goods than we are importing from them.”
Erdogan went on to namecheck Vestel Venus smartphones as possible homegrown alternatives to the iPhone. It’s something of a step down from Apple’s flagship devices, with the most high-end device – the Vestel Venus Z20 – coming in at ₺2499 (~£339) compared to the iPhone X’s ₺7499 (~£1016).
It’s not just the price that’s lower, of course: performance looks to be slightly above midrange, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 processor, 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage on board. The display is an 18:9, FHD affair, with a dual camera array housing 16-megapixel and 5-megapixel snappers.
In short, it looks decent enough on paper, but there’s an inherent problem with this “buy Turkish, stick it to the Americans” mantra hidden within those specifications: Qualcomm is an American company.
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So while Erdogan can go hard on the patriotic rhetoric, the truth of the matter is that until Turkey has a mobile processor manufacturer to rival Qualcomm with the means to supply a country of nearly 80 million, Vestel is going to continue sending money to the US, one way or another.
Does the Vestel Venus Z20 look like a decent iPhone rival to you? Let us know your thoughts on Twitter @TrustedReviews.