Huawei Loses Android Access, Qualcomm Chips and More After Trump Executive Order

Donald Trump Huawei Qualcomm Credit: Nicole S Glass / Shutterstock / Huawei
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Chinese smartphone manufacturer Huawei is in a bad spot in the wake of an executive order signed by President Donald Trump last week .The order, which invokes the Emergency Economic Powers Act, essentially hit Huawei with a one-two punch, Reuters reported.

It bars U.S. telecom firms from using Huawei tech in their infrastructure, but it also bans Huawei from buying U.S.-made technology for use in its own devices.

Here’s how the executive order is affecting the second largest smartphone maker in the world.

Android Access

Following the rule change last week, Google has reportedly terminated Huawei’s Android license. That means major changes for how Huawei’s devices use the operating system.

For one, Huawei must now resort to using open-source versions of Android for its future software updates. Google will stop providing access, technical support, and collaborative help to Huawei going forward.

The change may also prevent Huawei devices from using Google-produced platforms like Gmail, YouTube or Chrome. While many of those apps are already banned in China, Huawei device users in other countries have been able to use them.

Supply Agreements

In addition to being cut off from software support, a slew of Huawei’s supply chain partners in the U.S. and Europe are beginning to cut ties with the manufacturer.

U.S. chipmakers like Qualcomm and Qorvo have ceased shipments to the Chinese OEM. American memory manufacturers Micron Technology and Western Digital have also confirmed that they will no longer sell to Huawei.

It’s not just U.S.-based companies that are blacklisting Huawei, either. German processor maker Infineon has also reportedly halted its supply shipments to Huawei — reportedly to avoid legal complications in the U.S.

Firms like Toshiba and Japan Display are now also reviewing whether or not they can continue supplying Huawei with critical devices.

Essentially, Huawei has lost access to the majority of its hardware component suppliers. That means the smartphone maker must take on the momentous task of rebuilding an entire supply chain.

Why Did the U.S. Do This?

Essentially, the Trump administration signed the executive order on national security grounds. U.S. officials have long expressed concerns that Huawei equipment could be used for espionage by the Chinese government.

But the executive order also comes at a delicate time, as trade tensions between the U.S. and China are ratcheting up. Huawei, for its part, says the move is a tactic by the U.S. government to snarl its ability to compete with American firms.

Historically, Huawei has faced major trouble establishing a foothold in the U.S. and other countries in the West. Looking ahead, it’s not clear if the company will be able to do so anytime soon.

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