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Huawei Positive About Future After Winning Key 5G Deals: Report

Last year, Huawei’s R&D investment surpassed 14 billion dollars, ranking fifth globally in the 2018 EU Industrial R&D investment scoreboard

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FILE - A receptionist stands at the front counter of the Huawei's Cyber Security Lab at the Huawei factory in Dongguan, China's Guangdong province, March 6, 2019. VOA

Caught in the crossfire of global geopolitics, Huawei on Thursday said things have started looking up for the company with the signing of key 5G deals in the UK and Russia and added that it is “positive” about the future.

The world’s second-biggest smartphone seller, which shipped over 205 million units in 2018, also clarified that WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram and all other such apps will continue to work on the devices as they used to.

“All these are third-party applications, and can be installed and used without any issue on Huawei devices,” a company spokesperson said.

Huawei took solace from the fact that amid all the brouhaha, British telecom giant EE launched the country’s first high-speed 5G network in partnership with the world’s biggest telecom equipment supplier.

It also signed a 5G development deal with MTS, Russia’s biggest mobile operator. Spain also became one of the first countries in Europe to commercially roll-out the 5G network in cooperation with Huawei.

“Huawei is a global tech behemoth that has aggressively developed technological capabilities. On the back of its technical leadership in 5G, Huawei has been successful in forging partnerships with many nations globally,” said Prabhu Ram, Head-Industry Intelligence Group, CyberMedia Research (CMR).

Despite all the controversies, it is interesting to note that Huawei is still manufacturing circuit boards for UK Defence’s F-35 fighter jets, rubbishing the China-spying narrative.

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FILE – Visitors look at a display for 5G wireless technology from Chinese technology firm Huawei at the PT Expo in Beijing, China, Sept. 26, 2018. VOA

Huawei said that it also has amicable relationships with many US based companies and partners. Huawei is the second largest company utilising Google’s Android platform and covers 470 million customers worldwide, with their entire portfolio of products and services.

Additionally, most of the companies that provide consulting services to Huawei are based out of the US, including IBM and Accenture.

“While Huawei has seen a lot of ups and downs over the past few months, I believe the last word is yet to be written on its future. Recent developments, such as reinstating Huawei’s Mate 20 in the Android Q Beta list, and Google expressing its solidarity with the brand underline that there is a promising silver lining to the dark clouds,” Ram said.

“Potentially lifting of the ban on Huawei will prove beneficial for the future of the entire tech ecosystem, and not just Huawei,” he added.

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The company also boasts of strong partnerships with US tech giants such as Intel, Qualcomm and many other component original equipment manufacturers and also India based vendors such as Poorvika, Amazon India, Croma, Leica among others.

“We will continue to protect the interest of customers, maintain order in the market and ensure healthy development of the industry,” a Huawei spokesperson said.

Last year, Huawei’s R&D investment surpassed 14 billion dollars, ranking fifth globally in the 2018 EU Industrial R&D investment scoreboard. (IANS)

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US Firms May Get Nod to Restart New Sales as Trump Releases Restrictions on Huawei

The United States has pending cases against Huawei for allegedly stealing American intellectual property and violating Iran sanctions

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Huawei builds first-ever 5G network in Europe. VOA

The U.S. may approve licenses for companies to restart new sales to Huawei in as little as two weeks, according to a senior U.S. official, in a sign President Donald Trump’s recent effort to ease restrictions on the Chinese company could move forward quickly.

Huawei, the world’s largest telecommunications equipment maker, was added to a Commerce Department list in May that prohibits U.S. companies from supplying it with new American-made goods and services unless they obtain licenses that will likely be denied.

But late last month, after meeting with Chinese president Xi Jinping, President Donald Trump announced American firms could sell products to Huawei. And in recent days, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said licenses would be issued where there is no threat to national security.

Chip industry, China pressure

Trump’s reversal, and rapid implementation by the Commerce Department, suggests chip industry lobbying, coupled with Chinese political pressure, may well reignite U.S. technology sales to Huawei.

Two U.S. chipmakers who supply Huawei told Reuters in recent days they would apply for more licenses after Ross’s comments. They asked to remain anonymous. A customer response management company and a firm that simulates cross-sectional radar for Huawei are also likely to file applications in the coming days, according to Craig Ridgley, a trade compliance consultant in Washington.

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People walk past a Huawei retail store in Beijing, June 30, 2019. VOA

Out of $70 billion that Huawei spent buying components in 2018, about $11 billion went to U.S. firms, including Qualcomm, Intel and Micron Technology. “Since there’s no downside, companies are absolutely submitting applications, as required by the regulations,” said Washington lawyer Kevin Wolf, a former Commerce Department official.

A Huawei spokesman said “the Entity list restrictions should be removed altogether, rather than have temporary licenses applied for US vendors. Huawei has been found guilty of no relevant wrongdoing and represents no cybersecurity risk to any country so the restrictions are unmerited.”

Not all sales need OK

U.S. companies can currently sell goods in order to maintain existing networks and provide software updates to existing Huawei handsets, but are prohibited from making new sales of American-made goods and services.

Furthermore, not all U.S. sales to Huawei hinge on government approvals of license requests. Some U.S. chipmakers’ sales to Huawei may not need licenses because their products could be beyond the scope of U.S. export controls since many are manufactured abroad with few U.S. components.

U.S. officials have sought to clarify the new policy in recent weeks, saying they will allow sales of non-sensitive technology readily available abroad if national security is protected. But they have also reiterated that Huawei remains on the entity list, and relief would be temporary.

The U.S. semiconductor industry has been lobbying for broader relief, arguing that U.S. security goals should be advanced in a way that does not undermine the ability to compete globally and retain technological leadership.

Suppliers want to be allowed to provide customer service support for chips they build and sell overseas, or the approval to ship new American-made equipment to Huawei and its subsidiaries around the world.

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

Chip suppliers unclear

Still, it is unclear which products will be granted licenses. Some U.S. suppliers sought clarity at a conference the Commerce Department held in Washington this week. One manufacturer’s representative was told by the senior U.S. official that licenses could be granted in two to four weeks at the conference on Thursday.

The person, who did not want to be identified, said the official did not delineate the criteria for license approvals, but she came away believing they would be made on a case-by-case basis, at least at first, as the agency seeks to form more broad opinions.

When asked about the guidance from the senior official, a Commerce Department spokesman said the agency is “currently evaluating all licenses and determining what is in the nation’s best national security interest.”

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The United States has pending cases against Huawei for allegedly stealing American intellectual property and violating Iran sanctions. It also has launched a lobbying effort to persuade U.S. allies to keep Huawei out of next-generation 5G telecommunications infrastructure, citing concerns the company could spy on customers. Huawei has denied the allegations.

Eric Hirschhorn, a former undersecretary of Commerce, said the problem for government officials now reviewing the licenses is that they don’t know where the administration is going. “The policy two minutes ago may not be the policy two minutes from now,” Hirschhorn said. (VOA)