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Google, US Budget Office Seek Huawei Ban Reprieve: Report

The NDAA, signed by the US President in 2018, includes a ban on US agencies, and on recipients of federal grants and loans, from doing business with Chinese firms or with contractors that make substantial use of the companies’ products

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The Google name is displayed outside the company's office in London, Britain. VOA

Google and the White House budget office are among the organisations that are seeking reprieve from ban on doing business with Chinese technology company Huawei, according to media reports.

Google has asked to be exempted from any ban on Huawei, warning the Donald Trump administration that it would risk compromising US national security if it went ahead with export restrictions on Huawei, according to a report in Financial Times.

Google executives worry that the ban would force Huawei to develop its own version of Android and the “hybrid version” of Android could pose security risks, according to the report.

In May, the Trump administration announced a fresh set of measures targeting Huawei, including giving the commerce department power to ban the Chinese firm from selling 5G equipment in the US, as well as a ban on American companies selling their products to the Chinese group, Xinhua news agency reported on Monday.

After the ban was imposed, Google suspended business with Huawei, cutting it off from potential updates to Android. Since then, however, the administration has granted a 90-day reprieve to companies to adjust.

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FILE – A man uses two smartphones at once outside a Huawei store in Beijing, May 20, 2019. VOA

In a separate case, the White House’s acting budget chief is pushing for a delay in implementation of key provisions of the law that restricts the US government’s business with Huawei, according to a Wall Street Journal report on Sunday.

The ban could lead to a “dramatic reduction” in the number of companies that would be able to supply the government, and would disproportionately affect US companies in rural areas where Huawei gears were popular, Russell T. Vought, acting director of the Office of Management and Budget, wrote in letters to Vice-President Mike Pence and 9 Congressmen.

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Vought has asked for restrictions on contractors and on federal loan and grant recipients to take effect 4 years from the passage of the National Defence Authorisation Act (NDAA), instead of the present 2 years, to give affected companies time to respond and give feedback.

The NDAA, signed by the US President in 2018, includes a ban on US agencies, and on recipients of federal grants and loans, from doing business with Chinese firms or with contractors that make substantial use of the companies’ products. (IANS)

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Tech Major Google Abandons its Tablet-making Efforts

For Google-made hardware, the company is now focusing its roadmap on the Pixelbook family of laptops moving forward

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A Google logo is displayed at the entrance to the internet based company's offices in Toronto. VOA

Confirming that there would be no upcoming sequel to its Pixel Slate, Google has seemingly abandoned its tablet-making efforts and focus mainly on making laptops.

“Hey, it’s true. Google’s hardware team will be solely focused on building laptops moving forward, but make no mistake, Android and Chrome OS teams are 100 per cent committed for the long-run on working with our partners on tablets for all segments of the market (consumer, enterprise, edu),” Rick Osterloh, Senior Vice President of Devices and Services tweeted on Thursday.

However, the company would still support the existing Pixel Slate devices.

“We will fully support Pixel Slate for the long-term as well,” Osterloh added.

The Google Pixel Slate was first announced in October 2018 and was later launched last November at a starting price of $599.

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A man walks past a Google sign outside with a span of the Bay Bridge at rear in San Francisco, May 1, 2019. VOA

Even though it had a nice display and support for a mouse and trackpad, CNET found it to be pricey in comparison to the Chromebook and to tablet competition. It was also heavy and had buggy software, the report said.

According to a Computerworld report, affected employees from the tablet division in Google have been reassigned from developing tablets to laptops.

Also Read- Uber Incorporates Several Changes to its App for Drivers to Improve their Experience

For Google-made hardware, the company is now focusing its roadmap on the Pixelbook family of laptops moving forward.

“For Google’s first-party hardware efforts, we’ll be focusing on Chrome OS laptops,” CNET quoted a company spokesperson as saying. (IANS)