Chinese tech giant Huawei has had a terrible year, punctuated by the recent high-profile arrest of its CFO in Canada--an event that highlights concerns about how the company's products may pose a security threat to its users.
But marketing-wise, Huawei has been trying to highlight the good its products can do for people, most recently, with a new effort designed to help deaf children to read. The company recently debuted StorySign, an app that translates words into sign language. It worked with agency FCB Inferno, animation company Aardman, publishing partner Penguin and local charities affiliated with the European Union of the Deaf to debut the effort, which will be available to download free in 10 markets across Europe.
At launch, StorySign features children’s book "Where’s Spot." Users simply hold their phone up to the words on the page and an avatar, Star, designed by Aardman, signs the story as the printed words are highlighted. The idea is to help parents and children to learn to read together, and at their own pace.
FCB Inferno conceived the app as well as a marketing campaign, including a launch ad seen here. Directed by Chris Overton, who helmed Oscar-winning short film "The Silent Child" and starring Maisie Sly, the seven-year-old deaf actor who appeared in that film, it's a Christmas story about a deaf child struggling to read with her family, but finally learns to love it when she meets Santa one night. "We actually said we’d love to see Maisie in a Christmas film this year - so it’s amazing that it’s happened and that we were all together again,” says Overton.