We still don't know if future Huawei phones will run Android, and neither does Huawei

We still don't know if future Huawei phones will run Android, and neither does Huawei
After preparing for the worst possible outcome of the US-China trade war by accelerating the development of the company's in-house Android replacement, Huawei's head honchos breathed a sigh of relief on Saturday as Donald Trump unexpectedly walked back a ban that impacted the tech giant in previously unimaginable ways.

Unfortunately, President Trump didn't exactly elaborate on the conditions in which Huawei will be permitted to do business with American companies, merely stating the latter are again free to sell "equipment where there's no great national security problem with it." While it remains unclear how this risk assessment will be done (and exactly who's in charge of the operation), Huawei appears to be staying cautious, awaiting official guidance from the US Department of Commerce before celebrating.

The Android issue is a particularly thorny one, so it definitely comes as no surprise to hear Tim Danks, Huawei's vice president of risk management and partner relations, essentially offer no comment regarding his company's future use of Google's operating system, apps, and services. While the Chinese behemoth is "acknowledging President Trump's comments related to Huawei over the weekend", a thick cloud of confusion continues to hover over its core businesses.

That's because even National Economic Council chairman Larry Kudlow provided fairly vague explanations of the whole situation in an interview on Sunday, highlighting Huawei hasn't received a "general amnesty"... yet and hinting at individual licenses to be issued soon for "generally available" parts and components needed by the Chinese company to stay in business.

That sounds like it applies to Android, which is an open source OS widely available around the world, but it might not apply to the "full", licensed version of Android that includes crucial Google apps and services, as well as the Play Store, by default. In other words, Huawei still doesn't know for sure what software its future phones and tablets will be allowed to use. The same probably goes for Google, which has yet to comment on the latest development in this ongoing legislative mess that threatens to negatively impact the entire smartphone industry.

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4 Comments

1. cncrim

Posts: 1588; Member since: Aug 15, 2011

This trade war is not good for anyone and I have feeling US loose more than China on this, because US manufacture need China to produce part. And those part can product in US but will take years for manufacturers to build...... we as consumers loose the most because all expensive just get pass to consumers.

2. Mikele

Posts: 152; Member since: Nov 19, 2013

Definitely US looses more than China. The big Fella relaxed the ban because is bitting hard at the home front especially the network hardwares I guess. But the power hungers at Commerce Dept are twisting the rules for what Huawei could get.

3. mootu

Posts: 1517; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

It's quite simple, if Huawei don't get to use Googles android then China won't sign a trade deal. The Chinese only agreed to come back to negotiations because trump supposedly lifted his ban, the Americans have been trying to get talks moving again and the Chinese simply ignored them. The Chinese love to play the waiting game which infuriates the US as they like to rush everything.

4. tuminatr

Posts: 1123; Member since: Feb 23, 2009

I think the trade war is bad, but I also think Chinese manufacturers have very little respect for intellectual property rights. So how do we show them that they need to respect our us companies and not put something in the process that costs the American consumer more? Or is it even realistic to worry about intellectual property rights these days?

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