For many countries, the choice is a matter of economics, not geopolitics.
In Southeast Asia, Huawei offers the right equipment at substantially lower prices than competitors.
When the US government agreed to ban Huawei phones last week, Google followed in their wake and canceled the license of Android with Huawei.
There are claims that China has been spying on the US and other foreign powers with backdoors built by Huawei products and services, though no such evidence has been formally presented.
Given the amount of business that Huawei is giving to the US, the expected loss to the tech industry in the US is around $11 billion.
“We are complying with the order and reviewing the implications,” a Google spokesperson said. “For users of our services, Google Play and the security protections from Google Play Protect will continue to function on existing Huawei devices.”
What does it mean for Huawei smartphone users?
Google mentions that anyone who owns a Huawei smartphone will not be affected, as they will be able to download the app updates and software updates. The only pain that Huawei users will face is that they will not be able to install any future Android software updates.
“Huawei will continue to provide security updates and after sales services to all existing Huawei and Honor smartphone and tablet products covering those have been sold or still in stock globally,” a Huawei spokesperson told The Independent.
“We will continue to build a safe and sustainable software ecosystem, to provide the best experience for all users globally.”
Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for future versions of Huawei smartphones. They will lose access to Google Maps and YouTube.
One point of concern for Huawei users is that they will not be able to download any apps from the Google play store in the future.
Can Huawei’s survive without Google?
The move could hobble Huawei’s smartphone business outside China as the tech giant will immediately lose access to updates to Google’s Android operating system. The next version of its Android smartphones will also lose access to popular services including the Google Play Store and Gmail and YouTube apps.
However, china is not one to surrender acquiescently. My father used to tell me that fools make mistakes and never learn from them. Smart people learn from other people’s mistakes. A previous ban on Chinese equipment maker ZTE taught China to always have a backup plan, in case things go south. When the U.S. thought of repeating history with Huawei, the Chinese firm backfired with its OS, Hongmeng.
“We have prepared our operating system, if it turns out we can no longer use these systems [Android], we will be ready and have our plan B,” Huawei’s mobile chief Richard Yu Chengdong
Huawei has been working hard on developing its own App Gallery and other software assets similar to the work it has done on developing its chipsets for phones.
If you were planning to buy a new Huawei smartphone, it is best advised to wait for a while and see how this war ends. There is a chance that Hongmeng can sustain the pressure and agony of Android users, but on the other hand, there is always the possibility of Huawei users shifting to another smartphone brand.
Even thought, US has temporarily eased the trade restrictions on Huawei that it introduced last week, and US officials say the move aims to minimize the disruption to the Chinese tech giant’s US customers and supply partners, the Chinese company remains barred from buying American parts for any new products. Huawei’s founder, Ren Zhengfei says the 90-day reprieve makes little difference, as the company has already been preparing to produce its own components. Now that’s what we were talking about!