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Industry warns of ramifications over Huawei’s Android ban

Manny Pham
May 20, 2019

Huawei might not be able to use Android on future devices and could launch its own

Industry members have warned Huawei being banned from using the Android operating system will have detrimental effects on the mobile market.

US President Donald Trump placed Huawei on a security entity list which prevents the vendor from buying from US companies without a special licence. This has resulted in Google limiting Huawei’s access to the Android smartphone operating system.

Android apps and services will continue to function on Huawei devices but future updates can potentially cease, and future Huawei devices installed with Android.

Westcoast head of mobile Darren Seward said: “Ultimately we have great growth aspirations with Huawei and the news will have an affect on our business.

Seward admits the news has resulted in some resellers cancelling orders, but backs Huawei to bounce back, he said: “Huawei is very tenacious and persistent, it will find a way to resolve this issue. Huawei has made great strides in the UK with almost 20pc share. If this ban is upheld it will have a negative impact on the industry.

“However this could result in a new operating system which would add competition in the market.”

Iris Solutions MD Stephen Westley said he was in “disbelief” over the US government’s actions and said there will be ramifications on the mobile industry.

“Who will buy a Huawei device tomorrow knowing the possibility that it might not receive updates? This will have negative effects on Huawei of course but also the industry as a whole.

“This can come back to bite Google, from no fault of it own, as Huawei makes up a lot of volume as the second largest manufacturer in the world.

“We should also keep in mind Apple manufactures iPhones in China – Foxconn could stop manufacturing iPhones next and Apple’s US factories are years away from being operational.

“Other manufacturers will be looking over their shoulders. This situation is very scary”.

Huawei’s own operating system now likely
CCS Insight chief of research Ben Wood expects the disruption to have “considerable implications” for Huawei’s device business but says current users shouldn’t be concerned.

“People who currently own Huawei smartphones do not need to worry. At present any measures would only affect future devices and future updates.

“However, until we have a clear understanding of what exact measures Google has decided to take it is impossible to second guess the impact on future devices.”

With uncertainty around using Google’s Android OS for Huawei, Wood says the chances of Huawei using its own OS is now likely.

“Last year, CCS Insight predicted that tensions between the China and the US would present a strong incentive for Chinese companies to create their own operating system for smart devices. Given recent developments that seems more likely than ever.”

Exertis has also been contacted for comment.

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