Huawei Restricted from use of Android

Source Google News

China’s electronic company Huawei is barred from some updates to the Android operating system.

New designs of Huawei smartphones are set to lose access to some Google apps.

The move comes after the Trump administration added Huawei to a list of companies that American firms cannot trade with unless they have a licence.

In a statement, Google said it was “complying with the order and reviewing the implications”.

What it means for Huawei users

Existing Huawei smartphone users will be able to update apps and push through security fixes, as well as update Google Play services.

But when Google launches the next version of Android later this year, it may not be available on Huawei devices.

Future Huawei devices may no longer have apps such as YouTube and Maps.

Huawei can still use the version of the Android operating system available through an open source licence.

The move by Google would have big implications for Huawei’s consumer business.

What can Huawei do about this?

Last Wednesday the Trump administration added Huawei to its “entity list” which bans the company from acquiring technology from US firms without government approval.

In his comments since being placed on the list, Huawei chief executive Ren Zhengfei said they (Huawei) “have already been preparing for this.”

He said the firm, which buys about $67bn (Shs 251,926,700,000,000 trillion.) worth of components each year according to Nikkei media, would push ahead with developing its own parts.

Huawei faces growing backlash from Western countries, led by the US, over possible risks posed by using its products in next-generation 5G mobile networks.

Several countries have raised concerns that Huawei gear could be used by China for surveillance, allegations the company has vehemently denied.

Huawei has said its work does not pose any threats and that it is independent from the Chinese government. Still, some countries have blocked telecoms companies from using Huawei products in 5G mobile networks. So far the UK has held back from any formal ban.

In the short term, this could be very damaging for Huawei in the West. Smartphone shoppers would not want an Android phone that lacked access to Google’s Play Store, its virtual assistant or security updates, assuming these are among the services that would be pulled. In the longer term, though, this might give smartphone vendors in general a reason to seriously consider the need for a viable alternative to Google’s operating system. Even so, this move could knock its ambition to overtake Samsung and become the bestselling smartphone brand in 2020.  

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