Update [May 21, 2019]: The U.S. Department of Commerce has issued a statement confirming the lifting of the ban for 90 days beginning May 20. During this period, affected companies are expected to work out alternatives to Huawei with respect to this ban. The Department also notes that it will evaluate whether to extend what it calls Temporary General License beyond 90 days. The original post continues below.
Google recently dealt a major blow to Huawei’s pursuit of global dominance in the telecommunications industry by imposing restrictions denying the Chinese company access to the world’s largest app store, Google Play Store.
The ban will also see unreleased Huawei devices denied access to Google Apps, regular security updates and major Android OS updates. Google has already confirmed that existing Huawei phones will keep receiving security updates and Google Play Protect services and in the first statement fresh off this melee, Huawei seems to only reiterate what Google said earlier.
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 and that are still in stock globally.
As you may have noticed, Huawei is also keen to remind Google about its contributions to the growth of Android over the years. The Chinese vendor is the Android world’s second largest vendor after Samsung. Analysts had predicted that it could end the year ahead of Apple as the world’s second leading smartphone vendor, once again, behind Samsung.
We know Huawei has been working on an OS that would step in as an alternative to Android in the event of such a ban. Whether this is the time we finally get to see the OS is still unknown, but the company notes that it “will continue to build a safe and sustainable software ecosystem, in order to provide the best experience for all users globally.”
The U.S. has also been pushing Europe to ban Huawei and its products from the region, something that would dent the company’s latest efforts to expand across the European region. In the UK, for instance, the company is set to begin selling the Huawei Mate X and Huawei Mate 20 X as part of the first wave of 5G-ready phones set to go on sale in the coming weeks.