Google has suspended business with Huawei that requires the transfer of hardware, software and technical services except those publicly available via open source licensing, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Sunday, in a blow to the Chinese technology company that the U.S. government has sought to blacklist around the world.
Although anyone who currently owns a Huawei handset will still be able to download app updates provided by Google.
“For users of our services, Google Play and the security protections from Google Play Protect will continue to function on existing Huawei devices,” the spokesperson said.
However, as it stands, future Huawei handsets will not include proprietary apps and services from Google—for example YouTube, Maps, or Gmail.
The current suspension is the result of the ongoing US-China Trade War. On last Thursday The Trump administration in the United States added Huawei Technologies Co Ltd to a trade blacklist, immediately enacting restrictions that will make it extremely difficult for the company to do business with U.S. counterparts.
On last Friday, the U.S. Commerce Department said it was considering scaling back restrictions on Huawei to “prevent the interruption of existing network operations and equipment”. It was not immediately clear on Sunday whether Huawei’s access to mobile software would be affected.
The United States blacklisted Huawei in accusation of aiding Beijing in espionage — and threatened to cut it off from the U.S. software and semiconductors it needs to make its products. The ban, which had been anticipated, hamstring the world’s largest provider of networking gear and No. 2 smartphone vendor.
If fully implemented, the Trump administration action could have ripple effects across the global semiconductor industry. Intel is the main supplier of server chips to the Chinese company, Qualcomm provides it with processors and modems for many of its smartphones, Xilinx sells programmable chips used in networking and Broadcom is a supplier of switching chips, another key component in some types of networking machinery. Representatives for the chipmakers declined to comment.
Huawei “is heavily dependent on U.S. semiconductor products and would be seriously crippled without a supply of key U.S. components,” said Ryan Koontz, an analyst with Rosenblatt Securities Inc. The U.S. ban “may cause China to delay its 5G network build until the ban is lifted, having an impact on many global component suppliers.”