Google halts business operations with Huawei with immediate effect, current users not affected

A report by Reuters has revealed that Google has stopped its business operations with China’s Huawei with immediate effect. This business suspension include services that involve the transfer of hardware and software as well as technical services except those that are publicly available through open source licensing.

This move comes following reports that the US company will suspend business with one of the leading mobile manufacturers in the world, after it was added to a US trade blacklist last week.

Last Thursday (16 May), Huawei along with other 70 affiliates were added to the US Commerce Department’s Entity List on national security grounds, disallowing the company from purchasing parts and components from US companies without government approval.

According to Reuters, “Huawei Technologies Co Ltd will immediately lose access to updates to the Android operating system, and the next version of its smartphones outside of Chine will also lose access to popular applications and services including the Google Play Store and Gmail app”.

However, a Google spokesperson said that the current Huawei smartphones users with Google apps will not be affected and will be able to continue to use and download app updates provided by Google.

“We are complying with the order and reviewing the implications. For users of our services, Google Play and the security protections from Google Play Protect will continue to function on existing Huawei devices,” said the spokesperson without elaborating further.

Following Trump administration’s move to ban trade deals with the US, it will undoubtedly make it extremely difficult for Huawei to do business with US companies. If that is not all, Google has one of the highest number of users in the world using its open-source operating system Android.

After this, Huawei smartphone users will be left in limbo as they won’t be able to receive any Android updates, security patches and will even lose access to Google Play Store, which is an important part of Android phone experience. The list of smartphones includes the recently launched models like P30, P30 Pro, Mate 20 Pro and so on.

In just the first quarter of 2019, Huawei shipped more than 59 million smartphones where a huge block of devices were powered by Android Operating System. If this ban did not take place, Huawei could have become the biggest seller of Android-powered devices in the world, beating Samsung and other Chinese smartphone manufactures.

In response to this ban, Huawei said:

Huawei has made substantial contributions to the development and growth of Android around the world. As one of Android’s key global partners, we have worked closely with their open-source platform to develop an ecosystem that has benefitted both users and the industry.

Huawei will continue to provide security updates and after-sales services to all existing Huawei and Honor smartphone and tablet products covering those that have been sold or still in-stock globally.

We will continue to build a safe and sustainable software ecosystem, in order to provide the best experience for all users globally.”

On Tuesday (21 May) Huawei’s CEO Ren Zengfei said in an interview with Chinese state media that, “We sacrificed (the interest of) individuals and families for the sake of an ideal, to stand at the top of the world. For this ideal, there will be conflict with the United States sooner or later”.

Mr Ren added that the US ban has no impact on Huawei’s 5G plans and its competitors cannot beat the company for at least the next two or three years, mentioning that US politicians have underestimated the company.

According to an article by South China Morning Post, Huawei’s smartphone unit head Richard Yu Chengdong confirmed in March that the leading smartphone manufacturer has developed its own operating systems for both smartphones and computers in case those offered by US technology firms are no longer available.