The United States and Huawei haven’t exactly been on good terms for a number of years at this point, and things aren’t looking any better. In fact, they could get significantly worse for the Chinese company as a report out of Reuters claims future phones from the OEM might lose access to the Google Play Store.
The report mentions a move the US made on Huawei by adding the company to its “Entity List”. This essentially means no other US companies can do business with them unless they receive government approval. Reuters claims that because of this, Google will be halting its operations with Huawei and no longer provide the company with access to proprietary services. This excludes Android since it’s open source, but it does include the search giant’s vast array of in-house properties such as the Play Store, Gmail, YouTube, and more.
In addition, Google will no longer assist Huawei on future projects. So basically, Google and Huawei’s relationship is done for good if this report is to be believed.
For current Huawei phones, today’s report means Huawei will have to go through its own software update system in order to ship new versions of Android to customers. It’ll also have to wait for AOSP (the Android Open Source Project) to receive the updates first before it can ship them since the company isn’t allowed to use anything proprietary anymore. Luckily, Google told Reuters that existing Huawei smartphones will still have access to the Play Store and other services, but it’s unclear how long that will last.
Future smartphones Huawei produces may not even have the Play Store or other Google services at launch, which is potentially the biggest problem the company is facing.
It’s important to note that this can be prevented. Huawei would have to be removed from the Entity List first, then try to rebuild its relationship with Google. None of this seems likely at the moment, but things could be overturned considering the major blow to Huawei’s smartphone business this news has.
We’ll update you if we learn any new information.
Update 2: Updated this article with better clarity as to what will happen to both existing and upcoming Huawei smartphones and tablets.
Update: Both Google and Huawei have released statements to the press regarding this topic. The former confirms that Reuter’s report is true, while the latter aims to ensure customers they have nothing to worry about in regards to the future of Huawei’s smartphone business.
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