If the trade ban remains, no exceptions, that means future Huawei phones will no longer have an Android license. Huawei will no longer receive software updates, new versions of Android or have access to Google Play Store, Security and Services. Even if Huawei uses a free Android fork, this will lock its devices out of the app store and services like Gmail, Docs, Maps, Music, YouTube and Assistant will not work.

So, we are back at square one – no perfect clarity.

GadgetGuy’s article on Huawei clarity of 23 May is still the most relevant and objective advice (until rescinded), and those contemplating buying a Huawei device need to read it.

Huawei

This tweet from the real Donald J Trump is why we are still confused.

There may or may not be National Security concerns about Google and their relationship with China. If there is a problem, we will find out about it. I sincerely hope there is not!!! 7:02 AM – 26 Jul 2019

The 90-day Google exception gives little clarity for consumers. While Huawei phones currently receive Android updates, it remains hard to make a purchase recommendation when Huawei is still, and for the foreseeable future, on the US blacklist.

But the issue is far more profound. Qualcomm, Intel, Broadcom, Micron, Microsoft and many more significant tech companies are among the 50 tech companies awaiting licences. While Huawei may have component stockpiles (it has admitted that it has about 90-days reserve) what does that mean for future phones, laptops and consumer products?

Huawei responds (as reported by Bloomberg).

Founder Ren Zhengfei has warned that its consumer business (phones, tablets, computers, wearables and IoT) face a “painful long march,” in reference to the Communist Party’s historic cross-country trek.

“We have to complete an overhaul in harsh and difficult conditions, creating an invincible iron army that can help us achieve victory,” Ren wrote in the letter dated Aug. 2. “We absolutely have to complete this re-organisation within three to five years.”

“Two bullets fired at our consumer business group, unfortunately, hit the oil tanks,” Ren said in his letter, without elaborating.

Huawei’s Australia’s position on its consumer products is here

And for Australia and New Zealand and other five eyes?

In the US Senate this week

Senators Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) sent an incendiary letter to Google CEO Sundar Pichai demanding answers about the company’s relationship with Huawei. It is not so much about Android but about chastising Google’s apparent close relationship with Huawei – a chilling read!

The Federal Government has reaffirmed that Huawei will have no part in the 5G roll-out or any critical infrastructure.

“Australia’s position on 5G security is based on our domestic and national interests. The Australian Government stands by its August 2018 announcement on 5G security.”

Huawei’s Australian chief executive officer Hudson Liu said, “We accept that the Australian Government policy on 5G may not change in the short term, but we will never give up on the Australian market, we are committed to this country in both the good times and bad times.”

In fact, Huawei just closed its A$60 million R&D investment in Burwood, Victoria, blaming the “current negative environment” and uncertainty surrounding recent Federal regulatory changes. That was a long-term commitment to Australia Mr Liu.

Meanwhile, New Zealand says it is between ‘Huawei and a hard place’.

The Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) has categorically told Spark Telecom it can not use Huawei in the 5G roll-out.

That elicited a very ‘wrong’ response from Huawei NZ managing director Yanek Fan. He threatened to leave the New Zealand market if Huawei could not supply 5G equipment. He pointed to research it had commissioned that estimated hundreds of millions of dollars in extra costs for New Zealand if Huawei could not participate. 

GCSB (NZ) countered that Huawei’s ‘very, very shoddy’ equipment and software was the reason – not as a result of any geopolitical issues. New Zealand is standing firm.

Based on the above UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson says the UK will likely follow suit

He is ordering a new ‘ground-up’ look to protect the Five Eyes relationship (read GadgetGuy’s take here – also chilling). And its no coincidence he and Trump share the same barber!