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Huawei confirms the new Mate 30 Pro won’t come with Google’s Android apps • The Verge
Tom Warren:
<p>Richard Yu, the CEO of Huawei’s consumer products division, revealed onstage at a press event in Germany this morning that the company has been forced to drop Google’s Mobile Services (GMS) license on the Mate 30 series of devices.

“We cannot use the Google Mobile Services core, we can use the Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) core,” explained Yu very briefly. “Today that’s because of a US ban that these phones cannot preinstall the GMS core, it has forced us to use the HMS Core running the Huawei app gallery on the Mate 30 series phones.”

Google’s Play Store is an essential part of the company’s Google Mobile Services license, and it’s how the majority of Android-powered handsets outside of China get access to apps. Huawei can’t really work around this very easily, so instead, it’s simply building its own alternative to Google’s Play Store and associated services. Huawei is using $1bn to fund development, user growth, and marketing of its own Huawei Mobile Services.

There are 45,000 apps already integrated with Huawei Mobile Services, but there will be many thousands more that will need to be tweaked and made available in Huawei’s App Gallery. It’s a big task to get developers to support its own app store, but the company has no other real alternative.

Huawei spent less than a minute talking about the Android ban onstage, during a presentation that lasted nearly two hours. It’s clear the company has some big work ahead of it to convince consumers and developers that its version of Android, based on Android Open Source Project, will be viable.</p>

Huawei's $1bn to try to create a virtuous circle - developers bring users who buy phones which brings developers - is just like Microsoft's effort with Windows Phone 7 (<a href="">$100 per app, up to 10 apps, per developer</a>), and as doomed outside China. (And inside China, why would you write for Huawei rather than just to be on top of WeChat?) There are 2.7m apps on Google Play.

European carriers won't want the Mate 30: too much hassle doing customer support for people trying to get Netflix and not understanding why it isn't there. And "Android" is a Google trademark - so Huawei can't market it as an Android handset.
huawei  mate30  google 
1 hour ago by charlesarthur
US charges Chinese professor in latest shot at Huawei • Reuters
Karen Freifeld:
<p>Bo Mao was arrested in Texas on Aug. 14 and released six days later on $100,000 bond after he consented to proceed with the case in New York, according to <a href="">court documents</a>.

He pleaded not guilty in US district court in Brooklyn on Aug. 28 to a charge of conspiring to commit wire fraud.

According to the criminal complaint, Mao entered into an agreement with the unnamed California tech company to obtain its circuit board, claiming it was for academic research.

The complaint, however, accuses an unidentified Chinese telecommunications conglomerate, which sources say is Huawei, of trying to steal the technology, and alleges Mao played a role in its alleged scheme. A court document also indicates the case is related to Huawei.

Mao, an associate professor at Xiamen University in China, became a visiting professor at a Texas university last fall. He first gained attention as part of a Texas civil case between Huawei and Silicon Valley startup CNEX Labs Inc.</p>

Huawei really has been given the role of evil supervillain lately. It's still accused of stealing robot tech from T-Mobile.
10 days ago by charlesarthur
Huawei Mate X initial review: foldable champ • Pocket Lint
Cam Bunton:
<p>Folded up, from the front the Mate X has the appearance of a large regular smartphone, and that's arguably the Huawei method's biggest advantage over the Galaxy Fold. It's still very much usable as a smartphone even when it's closed, that full screen on the front doesn't pose the limitations that Samsung's outer screen might. 

Of course, this poses an issue when it comes to durability. Since there's no flexible glass on the market yet, current foldable smartphones rely on a transparent polymer covered by a protective film, similar to a screen protector. And that means that when it's shut, there's potential for that folded edge to be exposed to the elements, and that includes any rough impurities in your pocket, inevitably leading to scuffing; which is why Huawei is supplying the Mate X with a gorgeous leather case. 

In appearance, it doesn't look too dissimilar to the type of soft leather case you might get for your sunglasses. In fact, it's just about the right size for sunglasses too (we were curious, so we tried it). It's soft, and slim, feels great in the hand and has a large magnetic portion inside the flap, to keep it securely fastened when shut, while also making it easy to open and get to your phone than if it had a clasp or fastener of some kind. 

What we liked about the Huawei Mate X is that with the phone unfolded and opened up in its larger form factor, using the full square screen, the hinge feels surprisingly sturdy and solid, like it locks into place and stays relatively rigid, and needs a little force to fold it back up again. That means you don't have to worry about the phone wobbling or feeling fragile when you're using it this way. 

The resistance offered by the hinge also means that it does need a little catch to hold it in place when folded, coupled with a release button which - when pressed - releases the display. Once released, the screen springs out part of the way, and then needs unfolding manually into its open, flat position. In use, it's addictively clicky when pressed. So much so, we found ourselves repeatedly releasing, clicking the screen back in place and releasing it, over and over again (sorry Huawei). Let's just hope it's built to last. </p>

Let's just hope! Price of hope: €2,299. (About the same in £.) So it looks great but then you have to cover it with a case and then you have to take the case off because it's in the way.
huawei  foldable 
11 days ago by charlesarthur
Huawei was prepared for anything—except losing Google • The Information
Juro Osawa:
<p>To reduce its reliance on American-made chips inside its phones, for example, Huawei switched to alternatives that it made in-house.

But when it came to one of its most critical American business partners—Google, the creator of the Android mobile operating system that powered all of Huawei’s smartphones—the Chinese company had trouble imagining a parting of ways. In 2016, a top Huawei executive passed on an opportunity to partner with the maker of an Android alternative called Sailfish, seeing little need for a Plan B, according to people familiar with the matter. To the contrary, Huawei explored ways to become more intertwined with Google: A few years ago, the two companies discussed whether Huawei could help the US company bring Google Photos to China, where most Google internet services are blocked by the country’s regime, a person with knowledge of the talks said.

Now its failure to anticipate life without Google has come to haunt Huawei [because it won't be able to pre-install Google Play or Google apps on phones; that won't be popular in Europe and other overseas markets where buyers expect those.]

…Huawei has said that it will hold an event in Munich on Sept. 19 to unveil its new flagship model, the Mate 30. But at the event, Huawei may not be able to say when it will actually start selling the Mate 30 in Europe and other overseas markets, employees familiar with the situation said. Huawei still is trying to figure out how to address the problem of missing Google services, the employees said.</p>
huawei  google 
16 days ago by charlesarthur
Huawei Mate X release date pushed back, but next version may have even more screens • TechRadar
David Lumb:
<p>The foldable Huawei Mate X is unlikely to come out before November, which means a delay from the previously slated September launch, TechRadar learned at a press event at Huawei’s Shenzhen headquarters today.

There's no possibility of a September launch date anymore, which leaves the door open for the Samsung Galaxy Fold to be the first foldable to market. However, Huawei is certain the Mate X will launch before the end of 2019.

We also got wind of more exciting news: the next Mate X could have more screens, and it might come out as soon as next year.

Where will the Huawei Mate X follow-up fit more displays? By swapping out the steel rear cover in the current Huawei Mate X with a glass back, and those glass surfaces could become usable, touchable displays. 

It’s a big engineering challenge to say the least – it might end up being years before the issues are worked out and we get glass backs on foldable phones. We don't even have them on the upcoming Mate X's 8in front display yet.</p>

More screens. Suuuuure. Why not also say it'll be origami and fold into a swan when not in use?

It's been fascinating to watch Samsung and Huawei racing to be second on this. It's like watching two runners, both trying to lose. "Oooh my calf! Agh! No, go ahead, you have it." "Fine, I'll-- aah my tendon! That's it for me I'm afraid!" If foldables are the next big thing, they're suffering a midwife shortage.
huawei  samsung  foldable 
5 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Huawei technicians helped African governments spy on political opponents • WSJ
Joe Parkinson, Nicholas Bariyo and Josh Chin:
<p>According to these officials, the team, based on the third floor of the [Ugandan] capital’s police headquarters, spent days trying to penetrate [opposition leader Bobi] Wine’s WhatsApp and Skype communications using spyware developed by an Israeli company, but failed. Then they asked for help from the staff working in their offices from Huawei, Uganda’s top digital supplier.

“The Huawei technicians worked for two days and helped us puncture through,” said one senior officer at the surveillance unit. The Huawei engineers, identified by name in internal police documents reviewed by the Journal, used the Israeli-made spyware to penetrate Mr. Wine’s WhatsApp chat group, named Firebase crew after his band. Authorities scuppered his plans to organize street rallies and arrested the politician and dozens of his supporters.

The incident in Uganda and another in Zambia, as detailed in a Wall Street Journal investigation, show how Huawei employees have used the company’s technology and other companies’ products to support the domestic spying of those governments.

Since 2012 the US government has accused Huawei—the world’s largest maker of telecom equipment and second largest manufacturer of smartphones—of being a potential tool for the Chinese government to spy abroad, after decades of alleged corporate espionage by state-backed Chinese actors. Huawei has forcefully denied those charges.

The Journal investigation didn’t turn up evidence of spying by or on behalf of Beijing in Africa. Nor did it find that Huawei executives in China knew of, directed or approved the activities described. It also didn’t find that there was something particular about the technology in Huawei’s network that made such activities possible.</p>
huawei  africa 
5 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Samsung Galaxy Note 10 5G now best phone camera • Android Authority
C. Scott Brown:
<p>According to the venerable camera review site DxOMark, the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G is now the top smartphone camera across the entire industry. It steals the crown away from the Huawei P30 Pro, which held the top spot since its launch in March of this year.

The Note 10 Plus 5G’s score for its rear camera tops the P30 Pro’s rear camera by one point (113 against 112 respectively). Additionally, the front camera on the Note 10 Plus 5G now tops the previous record-holder for the selfie cam, too: the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G. That means, according to DxOMark, the Note 10 Plus 5G is now the best overall phone camera you can buy whether you are looking for rear shots or selfies shots.</p>

Nothing against Samsung, or Huawei, but I think these "scoring" systems long ago began looking foolish. DxOMark <a href="">insists that its tests are objective</a>, except that "We also get asked how a device’s Overall score can be higher than its sub-scores. The Overall score is not a weighted sum of the sub-scores. It is a proprietary and confidential mapping of sub-scores into a combined score."

That "proprietary and confidential" mapping sounds ever so slightly fishy to me. Why can't they publish it? Are they suggesting manufacturers would tweak their systems to win? And, honestly: the Note10 beats the P30 Pro by one point, less than 1%? The room for improvement is clearly asymptotic.
samsung  camera  huawei  benchmarks 
5 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Huawei’s Hongmeng OS could be revealed this week • The Verge
Sam Byford:
<p>Huawei will reportedly show off Hongmeng OS at its developer conference, which kicks off this week on Friday August 9th in Dongguan, China. Huawei executives have said that the software is primarily designed for IoT devices, though it will first come to Honor smart TVs, according to Reuters.

The report compares Hongmeng OS to Google’s long-in-the-works Fuchsia, which is similarly an experimental operating system that is designed to run on various form factors. Hongmeng OS is also said to be built around a microkernel so it can “better accommodate artificial intelligence and can run on multiple platforms.”

That said, the Global Times [a Chinese publication] also claims that a Hongmeng OS smartphone is very much in the works and already in the process of being tested. The first device could debut alongside Huawei’s Mate 30 Pro flagship later in the year, with a release date set for the fourth quarter. However, the phone is expected to target the low-to-mid-range segment, with pricing set at around 2,000 yuan (~$288).</p>

I bet there have been some Huawei engineers pulling some 24-hour shifts ahead of this one. And it's going to carry on that way for some time.
huawei  hongmeng 
6 weeks ago by charlesarthur
What Huawei didn’t say in its ‘robust’ half-year results • TechCrunch
Rita Liao:
<p>The media has largely bought into Huawei’s “strong” half-year results today, but there’s a major catch in the report: the company’s quarter-by-quarter smartphone growth was zero.

The telecom equipment and smartphone giant announced on Tuesday that its revenue grew 23.2% to reach 401.3 billion yuan ($58.31bn) in the first half of 2019 despite all the trade restrictions the U.S. slapped on it. Huawei’s smartphone shipments recorded 118m units in H1, up 24% year-over-year.

What about quarterly growth? Huawei didn’t say, but some quick math can uncover what it’s hiding. The company clocked a strong 39% in revenue growth in the first quarter, implying that its overall H1 momentum was dragged down by Q2 performance.

The firm shipped 59m smartphones in the first quarter, which means the figure was also 59m units in the second quarter. As tech journalist Alex Barredo pointed out in a tweet, Huawei’s Q2 smartphone shipments were historically stronger than Q1.</p>

As Barredo <a href="">pointed out</a>, they used to grow 32.5% on average from Q1 to Q2. To stall to 0% - especially with the growth seen in China - means the wheels really fell off with Trump's ban.
huawei  smartphone 
7 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Huawei and Google were working on new smart speaker before Trump’s ban • The Information
Juro Osawa:
<p>Before the US president’s action, which was in response to national security concerns, Huawei’s plan was to unveil the new speaker at the IFA tech trade show in Berlin this September, the people said. The speaker, powered by Google Assistant, was aimed at markets outside China, and Huawei was hoping to sell it online in the US.

“We worked on this project with Google for a year and made a lot of progress. Then everything suddenly stopped,” said a Huawei employee who declined to be named. 

A Huawei spokesman declined to comment. Google representatives didn’t respond to emailed requests for comment. 

Huawei has been a major Google business partner for years: Huawei phones run on the Android operating system and Huawei smartwatches use Google’s OS for wearable devices. The smart speaker project, which hasn’t previously been reported, highlights the breadth of Google’s collaborations with Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker by shipments. Before May, the two companies also discussed other topics including how to make Huawei phones compatible with Android Auto, a Google program that connects cars with smartphones, according to the people familiar with the matter.</p>

That must have really annoyed Samsung: it hasn't had anything like that kind of help from Google. But after the publicity that Huawei has had, how eager would people have been to have a permanent listening device in their home branded to a Chinese company?
huawei  google  smartspeaker 
7 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Britain delays decision on Huawei’s role in 5G networks • Reuters
Paul Sandle and Kylie MacLellan:
Britain’s National Security Council, chaired by outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May, discussed the issue in April and decided in principle to block Huawei from critical parts of the 5G network but give it limited access to less sensitive parts.

A final decision was supposed to have been included in a telecoms supply chain review published by Wright on Monday, but May’s resignation has stalled the process. She is due to hand over to her successor on Wednesday.

Wright said Britain could decide to ban Huawei from the 5G network completely, a move telecom operators have said would delay the roll out of services and significantly add to costs.

EE, the BT-owned market leader, launched its 5G network, which relies in part on Huawei’s equipment, in May. Vodafone has also started UK 5G services, which offer speeds around 20 times faster than 4G and a leap in capacity that will allow millions more devices to be connected.

“It is of course a possibility and remains so that the government may decide that an outright ban on Huawei equipment in the 5G network is the appropriate course of action,” Wright said.

“All that I say today is that we are not yet in a position to make a comprehensive decision about that and as soon as we are then we will.”

The opposition Labour Party’s digital spokesman Tom Watson said a ban on Huawei products could “significantly delay the roll out of 5G technology that will underpin tomorrow’s economy”.</p>
Huawei  5G  britain 
8 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Leaked documents reveal Huawei’s secret operations to build North Korea’s wireless network • Washington Post
Ellen Nakashima, Gerry Shih and John Hudson:
Huawei Technologies, the Chinese tech giant embroiled in President Trump’s trade war with China and blacklisted as a national security threat, secretly helped the North Korean government build and maintain the country’s commercial wireless network, according to internal documents obtained by The Washington Post and people familiar with the arrangement.

Huawei partnered with a Chinese state-owned firm, Panda International Information Technology Co., on a variety of projects there spanning at least eight years, according to past work orders, contracts and detailed spreadsheets taken from a database that charts the company’s telecom operations worldwide. The arrangement made it difficult to discern Huawei’s involvement.

The spreadsheets were provided to The Post by a former Huawei employee who considered the information to be of public interest. The former employee spoke on the condition of anonymity, citing a fear of retribution. Two additional sets of documents were shared by others with a desire to see the material made public. They also spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Taken together, the revelations raise questions about whether Huawei, which has used American technology in its components, violated US export controls to furnish equipment to North Korea…</p>

Shocking! From… 2008. I’ve no doubt that Huawei did this; it did much the same with Iran more recently. John Hudson, one of the co-authors, has a <a href=“”>long Twitter thread</a> about the documents. Still feels like ancient history. More to the point: have the sanctions against North Korea had any effect in the past three years? Are they even in place?
Huawei  northkorea 
8 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Huawei plans extensive layoffs in the US • WSJ
Dan Strumpf:
Huawei Technologies is planning extensive layoffs at its US operations, according to people familiar with the matter, as the Chinese technology giant continues to struggle with its American blacklisting.

The layoffs are expected to affect workers at Huawei’s US-based research and development subsidiary, Futurewei Technologies, according to these people. The unit employs about 850 people in research labs across the US, including in Texas, California and Washington state.

Huawei declined to comment. The exact number of layoffs couldn't be determined, but people familiar with the matter said they were expected to be in the hundreds. Some of Huawei’s Chinese employees in the US were being given the option of returning home and staying with the company, another person said.

Futurewei employees have faced restrictions communicating with colleagues in Huawei’s home offices in China following the May 16 Commerce Department decision to put Huawei on its so-called entity list, which blocked companies from supplying US-sourced technology to Huawei without a license, according to these people.</p>

I saw this division referred to by one person on Twitter as the “Thievery Division”. Ouch. Though he’s a hedge fund manager, so make your own jokes.
Huawei  us 
9 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Huawei founder says his new OS is faster than Android, but that’s still not good enough • BGR
Chris Smith:
<p>Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei said in an interview that the new operating system, which is based on Android, is even faster than Google’s mobile OS. He also confirmed what previous reports noted about the new platform, codenamed Hongmeng for the time being: that it’ll work on a variety of devices including laptops. In fact, he said it might be even faster than macOS. That said, it doesn’t matter how fast Hongmeng will be, because Huawei will have a tough time selling it in western countries.

In an interview with French periodical Le Point (via Sina Technology), Ren said that Hongmeng is meant to also work on network switches, routers, servers, smartphones, and other internet-connected devices. If that sounds familiar, that’s because Google’s new Fuchsia OS is also meant to run on a plethora of devices, not just smartphones and tablets.

Ren also said that Huawei’s OS has a processing delay of just five milliseconds, which makes it faster than both Android and macOS, with particular emphasis on the former. The inclusion of macOS here is an indication that Hongmeng will be an alternative to desktop operating systems like macOS and Windows 10.

The exec admitted that Huawei’s main problem with this product is the lack of an application store, so competing against the iPhone and Android will be difficult. But the company is developing its own app store, which is what Amazon does for its Android fork. But that’s still the main reason why hardcore Android users won’t care that Huawei has an Android-based OS that’s faster than Google’s.</p>

Most of this is nonsense - being "fast" is nice but isn't a specific necessity for a mobile OS. It's the app store that matters, as we all know.
android  huawei 
10 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Huawei gets its breather, sort of • The New York Times
<p> Larry Kudlow, the director of the National Economic Council, said that the U.S. had “relaxed a bit” the licensing requirements from the Commerce Department for companies that sell to Huawei.

Another top official suggested the move would allow chip makers to continue selling certain technology to Huawei.

That could be good news for some U.S. tech companies, including Broadcom, Intel and Qualcomm, who all sell microchips to Huawei. American businesses “have lobbied the administration, saying that the ban will cut them off from a major source of revenue, while doing little to hold back Huawei’s technological advancement,” Mr. Tankersley and Ms. Swanson write.

But the reprieve is not a broad amnesty. Mr. Ross, speaking at an export-control conference in Washington, said the administration would continue efforts to protect America’s advanced technologies. “It is wrong to trade sensitive I.P. or source codes for access to a foreign market,” he said, “no matter how lucrative that market might be.”</p>

This sounds then like they'll allow sales of smartphone components. But what about parts that go into networking gear? Are those OK if the gear isn't sold in the US? I don't think the US knows what its policy is in any detail.
huawei  us  components 
10 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Demand grows for tiny phone chargers using ‘new silicon’ • Financial Times
Louise Lucas:
<p>A tiny phone, tablet and laptop charger, the first to use gallium nitride rather than silicon chips, has seen sales four times greater than predicted, prompting the Chinese company behind it to try to ramp up production.

Anker, a Shenzhen-based company that specialises in computer and mobile phone accessories, unveiled a line of chargers using gallium nitride (GaN), which conducts electrons 1,000 times faster than silicon, in January.

The use of GaN allowed Anker to virtually halve the size of its charger, while retaining full-speed charging. Another Chinese-owned company, RAVPower, has also started using GaN in its chargers…

Raytheon, the US defence group, said in 2017 that it had spent $300m researching GaN since 1999. Like some of its peers, it uses the material in its active electronically scanned array (AESA) radars, which are able to detect stealth fighters at long range.

Shamefully, I hadn't heard of <a href="">gallium nitride</a>; it seems like the coming thing for high-power applications. But then there's this, further down the story:
<p>Bankers familiar with the deals have said these military applications were at least partly behind Washington’s move to block two bids by Chinese buyers to acquire companies with the technology, Philips’ lighting business and Aixtron, in 2016.

GaN also featured in an official inquiry into the death of 31-year-old engineer Shane Todd, who was found dead in his flat two days after leaving a job at the Institute of Microelectronics in Singapore, where he had been working on the development of GaN.

Several IME employees told the inquiry that the US engineer had been involved in a “potential project” between the IME and Huawei for the development of a GaN amplifier.</p>

<a href="">Todd's death</a> was a huge topic in 2013; he died in June 2012. Huawei's revenues really jumped in 2015, two years later.
huawei  galliumnitride  gan 
11 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Huawei reprieve: what happens next? • CNBC
Kate Fazzini:
<p>The White House and Commerce Department haven’t yet clarified whether the policy will affect Huawei’s use of Google’s Android operating system on many of its mobile devices, or Microsoft’s Windows operating system on its computers.

But a Microsoft spokesperson said the company made “an initial evaluation” of the Commerce Department decision on Huawei and will “to continue to offer Microsoft software updates to customers with Huawei devices.”

“We’re still providing Windows software updates to customers with Huawei laptops,” the spokesperson said.

Google did not immediately respond to comment, and a Huawei spokesperson said the company “had no further details at this time.”</p>

OK fine so you're all as confused as the rest of us. Good to know.
huawei  china 
11 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Kudlow: US sales to Huawei won't imperil national security • The New York Times
Associated Press:
<p>[White House economics adviser Larry] Kudlow told "Fox News Sunday" and CBS' "Face the Nation" that Huawei will remain on an American blacklist as a potential security threat. He stressed that additional US licensing "will be for what we call general merchandise, not national security sensitive," such as chips and software generally available around the world.

"What's happening now is simply a loosening up for general merchandise," Kudlow said. "This is not a general amnesty."

Trump made the announcement Saturday after meeting with China's Xi Jinping at the Group of 20 summit in Japan. Trump said US companies could make the sales if the transactions don't present a "great, national emergency problem."

Several Republican senators immediately expressed concerns. In a tweet Saturday, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida called the decision a "catastrophic mistake." Sen. Lindsey Graham [Republican, South Carolina], told CBS that Trump's agreement was "clearly a concession," and also said it would be a mistake if sales to Huawei involved "major technology."

Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., described the Chinese company as a clear threat to US national security. "To me, Huawei in the United States would be like a Trojan horse ready to steal more information from us," he told NBC's "Meet the Press."</p>

The reversal on Huawei was predictable enough - Trump doesn't do anything on principle, even when everyone around him knows that something should be done on principle - but this is just baffling. American companies were banned from selling to Huawei, and it looked like it would cripple the Chinese company. So is Google still on the banned list, given that its products aren't generally available?
huawei  google  android  ban 
11 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Huawei smartphone sales ebbing in Taiwan • Digitimes
Max Wang and Steve Shen:
<p>Huawei shipped about 50,000 smartphones in Taiwan in May, accounting for a 8.6% share in terms of unit shipments and remaining in fourth place as it did a month earlier, trailing Apple (24.8%), Samsung (23.7%) and Oppo (10.8%), said the sources.

In terms of shipment value, Huawei saw its ranking slide one notch to fourth from third with a 6% share, trailing Apple (52.7%), Samsung (19.7%) and Oppo (6.4%).

However, the sources said that they believe sales of Huawei's smartphones are likely to drop by 60-80% on month in June, with its ranking in unit shipments to tumble by 4-5 notches.</p>

Not that you'd expect a Chinese mainland brand to sell <em>that</em> well in Taiwan.
huawei  taiwan  smartphone 
12 weeks ago by charlesarthur
US tech companies sidestep a Trump ban, to keep selling to Huawei • The New York Times
Paul Mozur and Cecilia Kang:
<p>Kevin Wolf, a former Commerce Department official and partner at the law firm Akin Gump, has advised several American technology companies that supply Huawei. He said he told executives that Huawei’s addition to the list did not prevent American suppliers from continuing sales, as long as the goods and services weren’t made in the United States.

A chip, for example, can still be supplied to Huawei if it is manufactured outside the United States and doesn’t contain technology that can pose national security risks. But there are limits on sales from American companies. If the chip maker provides services from the United States for troubleshooting or instruction on how to use the product, for example, the company would not be able to sell to Huawei even if the physical chip were made overseas, Mr. Wolf said.

“This is not a loophole or an interpretation because there is no ambiguity,” he said. “It’s just esoteric.”

After this article was published online on Tuesday, Garrett Marquis, the White House National Security Council spokesman, criticized the companies’ workarounds. He said, “If true, it’s disturbing that a former Senate-confirmed Commerce Department official, who was previously responsible for enforcement of U.S. export control laws including through entity list restrictions, may be assisting listed entities to circumvent those very enforcement mechanisms.”

Mr. Wolf said he does not represent Chinese companies or firms on the entity list, and he added that Commerce Department officials had provided him with identical information on the scope of the list in recent weeks.</p>

Trade's gonna trade. And as one annoyed person has pointed out, wasn't Trump elected on a "let's all get rich selling stuff to the Chinese" platform?
trump  huawei 
12 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Huawei exec: the foldable Mate X with Android intact to launch by September • TechRadar
Matt Swider:
<p>The foldable Huawei Mate X is still coming and we know when it'll launch: September or sooner, according to a Huawei executive who spoke to TechRadar this week.

"It's coming in September – at the latest," said Vincent Pang, President of Huawei's Western European Region, while visiting New York City. "Probably earlier, but definitely September is guaranteed."

Where will the Huawei Mate X launch? "Any country that has 5G," Pang told us, making sure to remind us that Huawei's foldable phone is a 5G phone. 

This was likely stressed because the Samsung Galaxy Fold launched with a 4G LTE version (before ultimately being recalled), with a 5G version only spoken about once and never officially priced.

Of course, Pang's "any country that has 5G" comment comes with a caveat. The Mate X isn't coming to the US, which is no surprise given the Huawei ban in the US…

…will the Mate X actually run Android and its apps when it launches?

"Yes," Pang told us. "Because it has already been announced," suggesting that it may fall outside of Trump administration's ban on US companies (including software companies like Google) from dealing with Huawei.</p>

Minor detail: the Galaxy Fold didn't launch. They sent some to reviewers. Makes sense that the Mate will have Android - it was kitted out before the US ban - but updates might be in question.

September feels a long, long way off, though. Yet it'll be here in a smattering of weeks.
huawei  foldable 
12 weeks ago by charlesarthur
Premium smartphone market collapses 8% in Q1 2019, after Apple shipments drop 20% • Counterpoint Research
Varun Mishra:
<p>Apple’s declining shipments has pulled down the global smartphone premium segment. Data from Counterpoint Research’s Market Monitor Service for Q1 2019, shows that Apple’s shipments fell 20% year-on-year in Q1 2019, resulting in an 8%  YoY decline for the global premium* segment. However, as Apple is losing ground, Samsung is gaining share. During the quarter, Samsung ended up with one-fourth of the global premium segment, its highest ever share over the past year. This was also the first time when Samsung launched three devices instead of the usual two in its S series, thus covering wider price points.

According to our analysis, the trend of users holding onto their iPhones for longer has affected Apple’s shipments. The replacement cycle for iPhones has grown to over three years, on an average, from two years. On the other hand, substantial design changes in the Galaxy S10 series and the better value proposition it offers compared to high-end iPhones helped Samsung close the gap to Apple in the global premium segment.

<img src="" width="50%" />

Apart from Apple’s falling shipments, the sluggishness of the Chinese market was the other key reason for the decline in the global premium segment.</p>

Old news, in a way; wait and see what happens to Huawei's numbers in the next couple of quarters. (Might rise in the next one because networks are trying to get them out of their channel so they aren't left with unsaleable stock.)
huawei  apple  premium  smartphone 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
Inside Huawei’s secretive plans to develop an operating system to rival Google’s Android • South China Morning Post
<p>Huawei’s self-developed OS would be able to support a range of products and systems within its ecosystem, including smartphones, computers, tablets, TVs, automobiles and smart wear, which would also be compatible with all Android applications and existing web applications, Yu was quoted as saying in a Securities Times report published on May 21.

“The Huawei OS is likely to hit the market as soon as this fall, and no later than spring next year,” Yu said in a WeChat group discussion. Although the screenshot of the conversation has been widely circulated on Chinese media, Huawei has declined to verify the information.

“I am not able to reveal more information beyond Yu’s remarks,” Zhao Ming, president of Honor, one of Huawei’s two smartphone brands, told reporters in Shanghai last month, when asked for an update on the proprietary OS.

Questions remain though over potential user experience issues and whether overseas customers will actually want a phone without popular Google apps.

Google’s Android and Apple’s proprietary iOS have a stranglehold on smartphone operating systems, accounting for 99.9% of the global market [outside China], according to Gartner estimates last year.

Huawei was confident of its OS prospects in China as it believed developers and local consumers would support and build up the ecosystem quickly, the sources said. Huawei’s sales have continued to rise in the country as the Android system used on the mainland has never carried Google services, to comply with government restrictions.

But Bloomberg reported on June 5 that consumer fear in Europe that Huawei phones would quickly become out of date has meant demand for its devices has “dropped off a cliff” in some markets there, according to analysts.

“It is not the best time to introduce an OS as Huawei would have liked to try it when they have an even bigger market share,” one analyst said. “Domestically it may be OK, but the company remains concerned about the international response.”</p>
huawei  os  android  google 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei CEO says it underestimated impact of US ban, forecasts revenue dip • Reuters
Sijia Jiang:
<p>Huawei’s international smartphone shipments will drop 40%, Ren said on Monday, without specifying a period. Bloomberg reported on Sunday that the tech giant was preparing for a 40% to 60% decline in international smartphone shipments.

Huawei had reported revenue of 721.2bn yuan ($104.16bn) last year and said a few months ago it expected revenue this year to jump to $125bn. [The forecast now is $100bn.]

“We did not expect they would attack us on so many aspects,” Ren said but added that he expects a revival in the business in 2021.

“We cannot get components supply, cannot participate in many international organizations, cannot work closely with many universities, cannot use anything with U.S. components, and cannot even establish connection with networks that use such components.”</p>

Also, a little hilariously, Huawei has also <a href="">delayed the launch of its foldable phone by three months</a>, to some time in September. With Samsung having delayed its foldable launch by a continually unspecified period, there's a game of reverse chicken going on - who can hold off launching longer?
huawei  smartphone  foldable 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei files to trademark mobile OS around the world after US ban • Reuters
Marco Aquino and Brenda Goh:
<p>A senior US official on Thursday said Huawei’s clients should be asking themselves if the Chinese firm can meet its commitments given its dependence on US companies.

Huawei - the world’s biggest maker of telecoms network gear - has filed for a Hongmeng trademark in countries such as Cambodia, Canada, South Korea and New Zealand, data from the UN World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) shows.

It also filed an application in Peru on May 27, according to the country’s anti-trust agency Indecopi.

Huawei has a back-up OS in case it is cut off from US-made software, Richard Yu, CEO of the firm’s consumer division, told German newspaper Die Welt in an interview earlier this year.

The US official, meeting with officials in Europe to warn against buying Huawei equipment for next-generation mobile networks, said only time would tell if Huawei could diversify.</p>

One thing to trademark the product, quite another to have it up and running.
huawei  trademark 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei cancels launch of new laptop as US restrictions sting • WSJ
Stu Woo:
<p>China’s Huawei has canceled the launch of a new laptop and paused production at its personal-computer business because of restrictions on buying US components, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The moves mark Huawei’s first tangible setback from the US Commerce Department’s move to ban American companies from selling supplies to the Chinese company, while also demonstrating the importance of American businesses in the global personal-computing supply chain.

Huawei, the world’s No. 2 smartphone brand, has a relatively small and new personal-computer business. It makes three laptops, the first of which made its debut in 2016. It relies on Microsoft’s Windows operating system and Intel’s chips.

The head of Huawei’s consumer business, Richard Yu, told CNBC on Wednesday that the Commerce Department caused the company to cancel its new laptop launch, adding that it may never release that product if it remains on the Commerce Department’s blacklist. The news site the Information had reported the cancellation earlier.</p>

Couldn't find the report on The Information. Huawei's consumer side is 45% of revenues, so this is going to start hurting quite quickly.
huawei  mate 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
Acting budget chief seeks reprieve on Huawei ban • WSJ
Dan Strumpf:
<p>The request from Mr. Vought, dated June 4, asks for a delay in the implementation of portions of the National Defense Authorization Act… The delay, if enacted, would be a reprieve for Huawei, which has been the target of a series of US actions that threaten its dominance in telecommunications technology. In addition to the law targeting its business, they include last month’s Commerce Department order placing Huawei on a blacklist preventing the sale of American technology to the company, as well as an executive order that paves the way for a ban on Huawei from doing business in the US.

The letter says the NDAA rules could lead to a “dramatic reduction” in the number of companies that would be able to supply the government, and would disproportionately affect US companies in rural areas—where Huawei gear is popular—that rely on federal grants. The letter asks for the restrictions on contractors and on federal loan and grant recipients to take effect four years from the law’s passage, instead of the current two years, to give affected companies time to respond and give feedback.

“While the Administration recognizes the importance of these prohibitions to national security,” the letter states, “a number of agencies have heard significant concerns from a wide range of potentially impacted stakeholders who would be affected” by the rules as written.

In addition, the letter said “rural Federal grants recipients may be disproportionally impacted by the prohibition.”</p>

So Huawei is super-threatening, but not if it might mean people in rural areas (which tended to vote for Trump) might be inconvenienced in getting their hourly dose of Facebook?
huawei  us  tariff  defence 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei cuts orders to key suppliers after US blacklisting • Nikkei Asian Review
Cheng Ting-Fang and Lauly Li:
<p>Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC), the world's largest contract chipmaker, confirmed that orders from Huawei have declined since the Chinese company was hit with a de facto ban on using US technology. Taiwan-based Auras Technology, a top supplier of cooling modules for Huawei devices, said a Chinese customer's orders were affected, without naming the company.

A source familiar with Huawei smartphone orders told the Nikkei Asian Review that the company has downgraded its forecast for total smartphone shipments in the second half of 2019 by "about 20% to 30%" from the previous estimate following the US move to put the tech giant on the so-called Entity List, which in effect bans American companies from working with Huawei and its affiliates.

Other suppliers worldwide also need to comply with the new U.S. regulation if they are indirectly shipping a certain amount of American technologies to Huawei.

"Suppliers are receiving different ranges of order adjustments," the person familiar with Huawei's smartphone business said. "Suppliers mainly for markets outside of China were affected the most, while some suppliers that help Huawei in its home market actually benefited from the rising demand amid patriotic sentiment."

Another representative at a Huawei supplier that makes power-related components for its smartphone and telecom gear businesses told the Nikkei Asian Review the Chinese company has suspended some orders.</p>

In the second half of 2018 Huawei shipped 112.5m phones (up 33% on the previous year), so maybe it's just going to stand still. You'd imagine its ambition was to keep growing at the same rate.
huawei  smartphones 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
Google warns of US national security risks from Huawei ban • Financial Times
Kiran Stacey and James Politi:
<p>Google in particular is concerned it would not be allowed to update its Android operating system on Huawei’s smartphones, which it argues would prompt the Chinese company to develop its own version of the software.

Google argues a Huawei-modified version of Android would be more susceptible to being hacked, according to people briefed on its lobbying efforts. Huawei has said it would be able to develop its own operating system “very quickly”.

One person with knowledge of the conversations said: “Google has been arguing that by stopping it from dealing with Huawei, the US risks creating two kinds of Android operating system: the genuine version and a hybrid one. The hybrid one is likely to have more bugs in it than the Google one, and so could put Huawei phones more at risk of being hacked, not least by China.”

Washington has been concerned for years that telecoms equipment sold by Huawei could be used by Beijing for hacking. But since Donald Trump entered office, these concerns have come to the fore.</p>

Seems a bit of a stretch. The obvious retort from the US admin side would be "so tell everyone not to buy from Huawei. Get a logo like 'Intel Inside' but saying 'Google Inside' - 'Good To Google'? - and rely on that."
google  huawei  android 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
Smartphone shipment forecast cut to 1.35 billion for 2019 as uncertainty prevails • Canalys
<p>The latest numbers show that smartphone shipments will reach 1.35 billion units in 2019, a year-on-year decline of 3.1%. Due to the many uncertainties surrounding the US/China trade talks, the US Executive Order signed on 15 May and subsequent developments, Canalys has lowered its forecasts to reflect an uncertain future.

Canalys' base assumption is that restrictions will be imposed stringently on Huawei, once the 90-day reprieve expires, having a significant impact on its ability to roll-out new devices in the short term, especially outside of China. Canalys anticipates that Huawei is taking steps to mitigate the effect of component and service supply issues, but its overseas potential will be hampered for some time. The US and China may eventually reach a trade deal to alleviate the pressure on Huawei, but if and when this will happen is far from clear.

Canalys' published forecasts reflect what will happen should there be no major political changes. "It is important to note that market uncertainty is clearly prompting vendors to accelerate certain strategies to minimize the short- and long-term impact in a challenging business environment, for example, shifting manufacturing to different countries to hedge against the risk of tariffs. But with recent US announcements on tariffs on goods from more countries, the industry will be dealing with turmoil for some time," said Nicole Peng, VP, Mobility.

"We expect the other major smartphone vendors will have short-term opportunities while Huawei struggles. Samsung will be the biggest winner, thanks to its aggressive device strategy and its ability to quickly ramp up production, through the Korean firm may struggle to entirely fill the shortfall," said Rushabh Doshi, Research Director, Canalys. "It will take other vendors until late 2019 to react to the new opportunities. Samsung's control over component supply gives it a major advantage."</p>
huawei  samsung  smartphone 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
China accused of 'rigging' 5G tests to favour Huawei • Daily Telegraph
Anna Isaac, Christopher Williams and Hannah Boland:
<p>More than 100 computer security experts are conducting a security test of 5G equipment, from makers including Huawei and Western rivals Nokia and Ericsson, in which hacking techniques are used to check for weak spots. The ostensibly legitimate exercise is part of planning for 5G and its leap forward in speed and data capacity in the world’s biggest mobile market.

However, British officials and industry sources tracking the tests allege they are being rigged to defend Huawei. It is believed that vulnerabilities discovered by China’s secret state hackers have been passed to the 5G testers to ensure Nokia and Ericsson’s equipment is found to be unsecure.

Officials and Western telecoms executives held crisis meetings about the campaign last week.

Although knowledge of the effort is patchy, it is expected that testing will end around June 10, in time for Beijing to use the results to attempt to influence a crucial EU review of 5G security this summer. Two sources suggested China particularly intends to undermine cautionary advice on Huawei provided by British intelligence. Beijing’s hacking attack comes after a series of steps to turn China into what one corporate source has called a “hostile environment for non-Chinese telecoms firms”.</p>

The discomfort of western intelligence agencies at this is very clear. It would be astonishing if China's leaders didn't long ago decide that telecoms is a critical infrastructure for the future, and that if they happen to be the ones supplying to the rest of the world, all the better.
huawei  hacking  security 
june 2019 by charlesarthur
China threatens sweeping blacklist of firms after Huawei ban • Bloomberg
<p>China will set up a mechanism listing foreign enterprises, organizations and individuals that don’t obey market rules, violate contracts and block, cut off supply for non-commercial reasons or severely damage the legitimate interests of Chinese companies, Ministry of Commerce spokesman Gao Feng said. "Necessary measures will be taken" against those on the list, he said, adding that specifics would be released soon.

The US government has moved to curb Huawei’s ability to sell equipment in the US and buy parts from American suppliers, potentially crippling one of China’s most successful - but controversial - global companies. That step has helped broaden the tariff war into a wider confrontation between China and the US, at a time when negotiations between the two sides have broken down.

The vague wording of the Chinese state media report opens the door for Beijing to target a broad swathe of the global tech industry - from US giants like Alphabet’s Google, Qualcomm and Intel to even non-American suppliers that have cut off China’s largest technology company. Those run the gamut from Japan’s Toshiba to Britain’s Arm.

Shares in Apple, Qualcomm, and Intel fell more than 1% in pre-market trading on Friday.</p>

China won't ban Arm (which anyway is owned by Japan's Softbank) - its designs power all the smartphones it makes and exports. It might choose to nick its designs, which is a different problem for Arm. Ditto Qualcomm, and to a lesser extent Intel. And Google is banned inside China; not much leverage there.
china  huawei  tradewar 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei a key beneficiary of China subsidies that US wants ended •
<p>Huawei's annual reports and public records show that it has received hundreds of millions of dollars in grants, heavily subsidised land to build facilities and apartments for loyal employees, bonuses to top engineers, and massive state loans to international customers to fund purchases of Huawei products.

"Below market price land sales, massive targeted R&D grants, and export financing on terms that are more favourable than what Huawei could get from the private sector collectively appear to provide significant subsidies that other countries could challenge at the WTO if they are harming domestic companies," said Claire Reade, a former assistant US trade representative.

Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei had denied that the company received subsidies in a BBC interview in February, but a Huawei spokeswoman later said Ren meant the firm did not receive any special government aid.

"Like other companies, Huawei receives research subsidies from governments in several jurisdictions," the spokeswoman told AFP.

Over the past 10 years, Huawei has received 11bn yuan ($1.6bn) in grants, according to its annual reports.

More than half was given by China as "unconditional government grants" because of the firm's "contributions to the development of new high-technology" in China, according to Huawei's 2009 annual report.

Even some of Huawei's top engineers receive bonuses through government programmes: more than 100 of them received hundreds of thousands of dollars from the city of Shenzhen last year…

…Huawei inked a $10bn credit line with the China Development Bank (CDB) in 2004 to provide low-cost financing to customers buying its telecom gear. It was tripled to $30bn in 2009.</p>

The grants don't amount to much, but the credit line does.
huawei  grants  credit 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei’s yearslong rise is littered with accusations of theft and dubious ethics • WSJ
Chuin-Wei Yap, Dan Strumpf, Dustin Volz, Kate O’Keeffe and Aruna Viswanatha:
<p>Theft and industrial espionage are relatively common in the global tech industry, and Huawei isn’t the sole company to face accusations of stealing foreign intellectual property. What set Huawei apart, its accusers say, was the flagrancy of its plagiarism.

Eighteen months before the Supercomm imbroglio erupted, Cisco accused Huawei in January 2003 of copying its software and manuals—the first time Huawei had to fight a major international allegation of its theft.

“They have made verbatim copies of whole portions of Cisco’s user manuals,” Cisco said in its lawsuit. Cisco manuals accompany its routers, and its software is visible during the router’s operation; both are easily copied, Cisco said.

The copying was so extensive that Huawei inadvertently copied bugs in Cisco’s software, according to the lawsuit.

“Huawei couldn’t release its routers for shipment until it fixed a substantial number of the common Cisco bugs contained in the Huawei routers” for fear of giving away the plagiarism, said former Huawei human resources manager Chad Reynolds in a court filing. Cisco declined to comment.

Cisco General Counsel Mark Chandler flew to Shenzhen to confront Mr. Ren with evidence of Huawei’s theft, which included typos from Cisco’s manuals that also appeared in Huawei’s, according to a person briefed on the matter.

Mr. Ren listened impassively and gave a one-word response: “Coincidence.”</p>

Also vacuumed up talent let go by other companies such as Ericsson, but also accused of using hackers to steal commercial secrets, of stealing Motorola secrets (an allegation dropped when China's government seemed about to stall a Motorola selloff), of stealing a camera design, of stealing music that it preloaded on phones… it's a very long list. Even if you think that the US intel services have been helping feed this.
huawei  accusation  ip  theft 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei can't use microSD cards in its smartphones w/ ban • 9to5Google
Ben Schoon:
<p>Huawei has been de-listed from the SD Association, no longer appearing on the list of members. Speaking to Android Authority, the SD Association confirmed that Huawei was removed from this list in compliance with the US order. Huawei also mentioned that its current smartphones with microSD card support won’t be affected, obviously, but declined to comment on any future devices having support.

What’s important to note here, though, is that this move isn’t exactly a dagger for Huawei. The company has been moving away from using SD cards in its phones for a couple of years. Instead, Huawei devices, especially flagships, have been adopting the company’s own “NanoMemory” format which is smaller than a microSD card.

Nikkei has further pointed out that Huawei has also been “temporarily restricted” from the Wi-Fi Alliance following its US blacklisting. JEDEC, an organization which sets semiconductor standards, also saw Huawei temporarily withdraw its membership voluntarily in the days since the ban. These two moves mean that Huawei can’t contribute to these standards until things change. The company can still use these standards in developing its products, but they’ll no longer have a say in “crafting” the standards.</p>

As football fans say: getting to squeaky bum time for Huawei.

(I used the 9to5 Google writeup rather than the Android Authority one, despite the latter being first, because the former was more thorough and had the Wi-Fi stuff.)
huawei  sd  wifi 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Hobbling Huawei: Inside the U.S. war on China’s tech giant
Cassell Bryan-Low, Colin Packham, David Lague, Steve Stecklow and Jack Stubbs:
<p>In early 2018, in a complex of low-rise buildings in the Australian capital, a team of government hackers was engaging in a destructive digital war game.

The operatives – agents of the Australian Signals Directorate, the nation’s top-secret eavesdropping agency – had been given a challenge. With all the offensive cyber tools at their disposal, what harm could they inflict if they had access to equipment installed in the 5G network, the next-generation mobile communications technology, of a target nation?

What the team found, say current and former government officials, was sobering for Australian security and political leaders: The offensive potential of 5G was so great that if Australia were on the receiving end of such attacks, the country could be seriously exposed. The understanding of how 5G could be exploited for spying and to sabotage critical infrastructure changed everything for the Australians, according to people familiar with the deliberations.

Mike Burgess, the head of the signals directorate, recently explained why the security of fifth generation, or 5G, technology was so important: It will be integral to the communications at the heart of a country's critical infrastructure - everything from electric power to water supplies to sewage, he said in a March speech at a Sydney research institute.</p>

As the article (cast of thousands writing it!) points out, the current concerns about 5G and by extension Huawei originated in Australia when it was looking at its Next Generation Network scheme. From that, everything we see now flows.
huawei  5g  australia 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
US says Europeans coming around on threat posed by Huawei • Bloomberg
Nick Wadhams:
<p>The US has strong indications that European nations are coming around to the severity of the threat posed by China’s Huawei Technologies and the dangers of incorporating its equipment into their coming 5G networks, according to an administration official.

The official said that while European nations probably won’t impose an outright legal ban on Huawei, the US anticipates that many nations will effectively bar the company’s equipment from their next-generation telecom networks. The official asked not to be identified discussing private discussions.

Such moves would represent a victory for the Trump administration, which has warned against the use of Huawei in 5G systems and has opened its own campaign to blacklist the company and limit its access to American suppliers over security concerns. The official declined to name specific countries prepared to change their position.

In April, Bloomberg News reported that the UK is set to toughen the rules under which Huawei operates there, while stopping short of an outright ban.</p>
huawei  europe  5g 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Vodafone and EE just killed Huawei's 5G launch in the UK • Android Authority
Scott Scrivens:
<p>Things are going from bad to worse for Huawei. In the wake of the US Government executive order that restricts US companies from doing business with the Chinese tech company, the repercussions are mounting. Huawei and Honor phones could lose Google services and access to future Android updates and HiSilicon's Kirin chips are also under threat. Now, two major UK carriers have dropped Huawei from their 5G launch plans.

BT-owned network EE was the first to announce that it would be pulling Huawei phones from its 5G selection, with the service to be turned on in 16 UK cities this year, starting May 30. Google's enforced decision that could see Huawei devices lose access to the Play Store and Android version updates is the key factor, with an EE spokesperson releasing the following statement:

“We’ve put the Huawei devices on pause, until we have more information. Until we have the information and confidence that ensures our customers will get support for the lifetime of their devices with us then we’ve got the Huawei devices on pause.”

In a further blow, Vodafone has followed suit and will also not sell the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G when its new network goes online on July 3. The UK's third largest mobile operator has said only that the device “is yet to receive the necessary certifications,” but it's likely similar pressures faced by EE were also behind the decision.</p>

It never rains but it absolutely pours for days on end.
huawei  5g  security 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei: ARM memo tells staff to stop working with China’s tech giant • BBC News
Dave Lee:
<p>Huawei currently sources some of its chips from HiSilicon, which it owns. However, while produced in China, HiSilicon’s chips are built using underlying technology created by ARM.

While HiSilicon and Huawei are free to carry on using and manufacturing existing chips, the ban would mean the company could no longer turn to ARM for assistance in developing components for devices in future.

HiSilicon's upcoming processor, Kirin 985, is due be used in Huawei devices later this year. According to a source at ARM, it is not expected to be affected by the ban. However, the next iteration of the chip has not yet been completed - and is likely to need to be rebuilt from scratch, the source said.

Huawei also uses ARM's designs for its recently unveiled Kunpeng chips. These are used to power its TaiShan-series computer servers, which are designed to provide cloud computing and storage to clients.

In addition, the company told analysts in January that the Tiangang chip at the heart of its 5G base stations is also ARM-based.

"The problem of the whole telecoms industry is that so much of it is based on the exchange of technology between different companies - whether that's chip companies, software providers or the makers of other hardware," commented Alan Burkitt-Gray, editor-at-large of the telecoms news site Capacity Media.

He added that Huawei would likely face other problems licensing 5G-related tech from others, and in turn US-based companies would now be unable to licence the Chinese company's 5G inventions.</p>

Terrific scoop by Lee. But this is going to destroy all of Huawei's business. Without ARM, the networking side gradually dies.
huawei  arm  chips  smartphone  server  5g 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei ban nudges Chinese iPhone fans to switch sides • Tech In Asia
Meng Jing and Zen Soo:
<p>Both sense and sensibility played major roles when diehard iPhone fan Wang Zhixin finally made the decision to become a first-time Huawei user after sticking with the US brand for almost a decade.

“There is a calling from my heart that I need to show support for Chinese brands, especially in the trade war climate,” said the manager at one of China’s largest solar module manufacturers. When the time finally came to retire his three-year-old iPhone 7 earlier this month, Wang went with a Huawei P30.

Huawei was not entirely chosen out of sympathy. “The company has a reputation for better quality at a cheaper price,” Wang said. “[The P30] is faster and can take better pictures.”

For Sam Li, who works at a state-owned telecom company in Beijing, switching from Apple to Huawei was also driven by an emotion. “It’s kind of embarrassing to pull an iPhone out of your pocket nowadays when all the company executives use Huawei.”</p>

And in today's example of "irony": <a href="">"Huawei's CEO says he admires Apple and buys his family iPhones when they're not in China"</a>.
huawei  apple  iphone 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei considers rivals to Google's Android after US ban • Bloomberg
Natalia Drozdiak:
<p>Huawei Technologies said it’s working on its own operating system for its mobile handsets and will consider rivals to Google’s Android, after the US blacklisted the company, threatening its partnerships with chip, component and software suppliers.

The Chinese telecom equipment giant said Tuesday it was in talks with the Alphabet unit about how to proceed after Google confirmed it would cut access to some of Huawei’s operating system features for the company’s new devices in response to the announcement.

Should Google’s system no longer be available, "then the alternative option will naturally come out - either from Huawei or someone else," Abraham Liu, Huawei’s representative to the European Union institutions, said at an event in Brussels on Tuesday.

Liu said Huawei had been working on its own operating system but that he didn’t have the details about when this would be ready. Huawei would do everything in its power to mitigate the impact of the US decisions, Liu said.</p>

The effects of this are going to ripple on and on, but it's clear that Huawei took notice from ZTE being banned a year ago. After all, it had been dealing with Iran in breach of US sanctions too. Remember there's a Huawei CFO facing a US trial for breaching sanctions.
Huawei  smartphone  android 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Microsoft removes Huawei laptop from store, remains silent on potential Windows ban • The Verge
Tom Warren:
<p>Huawei’s MateBook X Pro is one of the best Windows laptops available in the US right now, but without a Windows license, it’s no longer a viable alternative to Apple’s MacBook Pro or the HP Spectre x360 and even Microsoft’s own Surface lineup. Microsoft appears to have stopped selling Huawei’s MateBook X Pro at the company’s online store, too.

A listing for the MateBook X Pro mysteriously disappeared over the weekend, and searching for any Huawei hardware brings up no results at the Microsoft Store. You can still find the laptop listing in a Google cache of last week, though. The Verge understands that Microsoft retail stores are still selling existing MateBook X Pro laptops they have in stock.

Microsoft’s potential Windows ban could also affect Huawei’s server solutions. Microsoft and Huawei both operate a hybrid cloud solution for Microsoft’s Azure stack, using Microsoft-certified Huawei servers.</p>

Without Windows they'll have to turn to... Linux? for their servers.
Huawei  windows  microsoft 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei’s phone business would be decimated without Google’s Android • The Verge
Vlad Savov:
<p>Huawei still has the option to use the open-source variety of Android, but Google has been gradually whittling all of the attractive components away from the Android Open Source Project (AOSP). The genuine full-fat Android experience of today — featuring Google Maps, YouTube, and, most crucially, the full ecosystem of third-party Android apps — is dependent on Google’s licensing assent. Deprived of Google’s software, Huawei would be selling featherless chickens to smartphone buyers used to having Play Store access. In Europe, even the finest hardware wouldn’t convince consumers to buy a phone without an app ecosystem. Google wields enormous market power through its Play Store, significant enough for the European Commission to conduct an antitrust investigation.

In its native China, Huawei already operates without the Play Store, owing to Google’s absence from the market. But even there, Huawei would suffer from not having a close working relationship with Google. All of its fellow Chinese rivals would get earlier access to the next version of Android while Huawei would have to wait for the AOSP code to be made available to the public. The Chinese consumer is probably the least sensitive to operating system updates and upgrades, given how WeChat has evolved to be an OS and ecosystem atop Android, but Huawei would still be at a disadvantage in one of the world’s most competitive phone markets.

There’s no positive spin to this situation for Huawei. Trying to sell smartphones without Google’s cooperation in the modern age is a spectrum that goes from bad to disastrous. Windows Phone, Palm OS, MeeGo, Symbian, Bada (later Tizen), and BlackBerry OS are just a few of the mobile OS corpses that Android’s rise has produced.</p>

It would be more than decimated - it would be halved. I bet it would find ways to get access to new code before AOSP, but there's a suspicion that there won't be any more updates for Google apps, or the Play Store, for existing handsets. We just don't know. The irony is that the security concerns - what all this is about - have been raised over Huawei's networking gear, not its smartphones.
huawei  smartphone 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei supply freeze points to US-China tech cold war • Bloomberg
Tim Culpan:
<p>An initial Chinese version of Android – let’s call it Chandroid – won’t hold a candle to the original developed by Alphabet’s Google. Home-grown communications chips will be inferior to those offered by Qualcomm and Xilinx. But whereas past attempts to develop local products could flop because Western alternatives were still available, failure is no longer an option in the eyes of China’s top leadership.

The government will pump in more subsidies to make sure the industry doesn’t fall short, and much money will be wasted. Money can’t solve all problems. But given time, Chinese state funding will overcome enough challenges to make local alternatives viable, if not comparable to American technology. It’s unlikely the US has the political will to subsidize its own companies to the same extent. Initially, it won’t need to because of America’s current superiority. But Huawei’s position at the forefront of 5G mobile technology shows that this lead won’t be held forever.

So now the tech cold war has begun. The winner won’t be the side with the best fighters, but the one with the greater ability to endure the pain of prolonged losses.</p>

Huawei management had been considering the cutoff by Google for a year - which makes sense since it was last April that ZTE was told it couldn't have any components or software from the US. That was rescinded a month later, but clearly Huawei took it as a warning shot.

And this could be a cold war that the US doesn't win, as Culpan hints.
us  china  tradewar  huawei 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
January 2019: The Huawei crackdown could be a disaster for small carriers • The Verge
Colin Lecher:
<p>The Trump administration has banned contractors from using Huawei tech, and major carriers do not use Huawei equipment that could compromise that contract work. But the same isn’t true for smaller companies without those contracts. In the face of the unfolding controversy, the Federal Communications Commission has proposed rules that could prevent companies from using agency funds to buy equipment from businesses deemed a security risk — or possibly from using equipment from companies like Huawei at all. Small carriers will likely feel the brunt of that policy.

To build out its infrastructure, those small carriers say they often rely on Huawei, which has become the largest provider of telecommunications equipment in the world, offering whatever tools a company might need. Some of the companies argue that the Huawei-made equipment can mean several million dollars in savings.

In a filing to the FCC, the Rural Wireless Association (RWA), which represents small service providers as well as Huawei itself, has claimed that the costs associated with dumping Huawei products would be substantial. “RWA estimates that at least 25 percent of its carrier members would be impacted,” the group wrote in a filing to the agency. “Estimated rip-and-replace costs vary by carrier, but are significant across the board.” The RWA argues that the FCC should provide funding for any required change in equipment.</p>

I'd love to know how it is that Huawei can build this stuff at such lower prices than companies such as Nokia and Ericsson. Cheaper labour? Cheaper capital costs?
huawei  infrastructure 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Exclusive: Google suspends some business with Huawei after Trump blacklist - source • Reuters
Angela Moon:
<p>Alphabet Inc’s Google has suspended business with Huawei that requires the transfer of hardware and software products except those covered by open source licenses, a source close to 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.

Huawei Technologies Co Ltd will immediately lose access to updates to the Android operating system, and the next version of its smartphones outside of China will also lose access to popular applications and services including the Google Play Store and Gmail app.

Details of the specific services were still being discussed internally at Google, according to the source. Huawei attorneys are also studying the impact of the U.S. Commerce Department’s actions, a Huawei spokesman said on Friday. Huawei was not immediately reachable for further comment.</p>

If this is continued, it's calamitous for Huawei; without Google apps and the Google Play Store, it can't serve customers. (It's unclear whether existing Huawei phones will lose access.) In Q1 2019 it shipped a total of 59m smartphones; of those, <a href="">29.9m were in China</a>, so half were outside. This decision affects the half outside China.

Bear in mind though that this may be a negotiating ploy - just as Trump's ban on China's ZTE, which could have razed it, was imposed in April 2018 and lifted a month later, apparently amid some trade bargaining. At least with ZTE there was a clear reason - its breach of technology embargoes with Iran. For Huawei, there's no such smoking gun.
huawei  google  android 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei poses security threat to UK, says former MI6 chief • The Guardian
Dan Sabbagh and Jon Henley:
<p>In a report from the Henry Jackson Society (HJS), the authors claimed Huawei “has long been accused of espionage” – a claim denied repeatedly by the firm – and notes that “while there are no definitely proven cases”, a precautionary principle should be adopted.

The document is co-authored by the Tory MP Bob Seely, who has already raised concerns about Huawei, and the expert academics Peter Varnish and John Hemmings. It adds to pressure heaped on the British government to reconsider letting Huawei participate in the UK’s 5G network from the US and Australia, whose intelligence agencies share information with the UK.

Last month May provisionally approved the use of Huawei technology for parts of the UK’s future 5G telecoms networks after a meeting of the NSC. A leaked account of the meeting said five cabinet ministers raised concerns about the company.

The HJS report has a foreword by Sir Richard Dearlove, who led MI6 between 1999 and 2004. Using blunter language than the report’s authors, he wrote: “I very much hope there is time for the UK government … to reconsider the Huawei decision.

“No part of the Communist Chinese state is ultimately able to operate free of the control exercised by its Communist party leadership,” Dearlove added. “Therefore, we must conclude the engagement of Huawei presents a potential security risk to the UK.”</p>

I'd link to the report, but the Henry Jackson Society has the slowest website in the world. Unless it's being DDOSd (which seems unlikely).
china  huawei  5g  espionage 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Samsung and Huawei agree to settle patent disputes • Android Authority
Williams Pelegrin:
<p>Samsung and Huawei have reportedly agreed to finally bury the hatchet and settle their years-long dispute over smartphone patents. The Guangdong High People’s Court in southern China mediated the settlement, according to Nikkei.

The terms of the alleged settlement have not been made public, but it’s believed that they include some sort of cross-licensing patent deal. The patents that are part of the supposed deal include those for basic technologies, with no further specifics mentioned.

It’s suggested that Samsung and Huawei are only settling now due to them wanting to pour more resources into the stagnant smartphone market. Even though Huawei now owns a company-record 17% of the market, Q1 2019 marked the sixth straight quarter of declining overall smartphone shipments. Meanwhile, Samsung saw a 10% decrease in market share year-over-year.</p>

They aren't settling to "pour more resources into"; they're doing it because wasting money on lawyers when your profits are shrinking is daft. Slightly different when Apple and Samsung were going at it: the market was on the rise and there were big prizes to be won. Purely at a guess, the patents cover modems (Huawei) and screens (Samsung) and cameras (both).
huawei  samsung  patents 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Trump signs order to protect US networks from foreign espionage, a move that appears to target China • The Washington Post
Ellen Nakashima and Josh Dawsey:
<p>The order authorizes the commerce secretary to block transactions involving communications technologies built by companies controlled by a foreign adversary that put U.S. security at “unacceptable” risk — or pose a threat of espionage or sabotage to networks that underpin the day-to-day running of vital public services.

Wednesday’s announcement was expected nearly a year ago and comes as neither Washington nor Beijing appears willing to back down in their ongoing economic dispute. The National Economic Council, which had blocked the move for months, dropped its objection as trade talks hit an impasse, one official said.

Trump’s executive order does not immediately exclude any specific companies or countries but certainly will not lessen tensions with Beijing. It is consistent with an increasingly aggressive tack against China in which Trump has used tariffs as economic weapons, a tactic that he believes to be popular with his political base.

The move also boosts the administration’s somewhat uphill effort to persuade allies and partners in Europe to bar Huawei, which officials say is beholden to the Chinese government, from their next-generation 5G wireless networks.</p>

Of course, this could be seen as just another move in the trade war, but it feels like part of a long-planned policy driven by the US defence establishment.
trump  huawei  defence 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Smartphone shipments experience deeper decline in Q1 2019 with a clear shakeup among the market leaders • IDC
Worldwide volumes down 6.6%; stagnation rules the day:
<p>"The less than stellar first quarter in the United States can be attributed to the continued slowdown we are witnessing at the high end of the market," said Anthony Scarsella, research manager with IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. "Consumers continue to hold on to their phones longer than before as newer higher priced models offer little incentive to shell out top dollar to upgrade. Moreover, the pending arrival of 5G handsets could have consumers waiting until both the networks and devices are ready for prime time in 2020."

Samsung saw volumes drop 8.1% in 1Q19 with shipments of 71.9m. The results were enough to keep Samsung in the top spot of the market, but Huawei is continuing to close the gap between the two smartphone leaders. Despite challenging earnings in terms of profits, Samsung did say that the recently launched Galaxy S10 series did sell well during the quarter. With the 5G variant now launched in its home market of Korea and plans to bring this device and other 5G SKUs to other important markets in 2019, it will be equally crucial for Samsung not to lose focus on its mid-tier product strategy to fend off Huawei.

Huawei moved its way into a clear number two spot as the only smartphone vendor at the top of the market that saw volumes grow during 1Q19. Impressively, the company had year-over-year growth of 50.3% in 1Q19 with volumes of 59.1m units and a 19.0% market share. Huawei is now within striking distance of Samsung at the top of the global market. In China, Huawei continued its positive momentum with a well-rounded portfolio targeting all segments from low to high. Huawei’s high-end models continued to create a strong affiliation for the mid to low-end models, which are supporting the company's overall shipment performance.

Apple had a challenging first quarter as shipments dropped to 36.4m units representing a staggering 30.2% decline from last year. The iPhone struggled to win over conusmers in most major markets as competitors continue to eat away at Apple's market share. Price cuts in China throughout the quarter along with favorable trade-in deals in many markets were still not enough to encourage consumers to upgrade. Combine this with the fact that most competitors will shortly launch 5G phones and new foldable devices, the iPhone could face a difficult remainder of the year. Despite the lackluster quarter, Apple's strong installed base along with its recent agreement with Qualcomm will be viewed as the light at the end of the tunnel heading into 2020 for the Cupertino-based giant.</p>
Smartphone  apple  huawei  samsung 
may 2019 by charlesarthur
Bloomberg alleges Huawei routers and network gear are backdoored • Ars Technica
Peter Bright:
<p>Vodafone, the largest mobile network operator in Europe, found backdoors in Huawei equipment between 2009 and 2011, <a href="">reports Bloomberg</a>. With these backdoors, Huawei could have gained unauthorized access to Vodafone's "fixed-line network in Italy." But Vodafone disagrees, saying that while it did discover some security vulnerabilities in Huawei equipment, these were fixed by Huawei and in any case were not remotely accessible, and hence they could not be used by Huawei.

Bloomberg's claims are based on Vodafone's internal security documentation and "people involved in the situation." Several different "backdoors" are described: unsecured telnet access to home routers, along with "backdoors" in optical service nodes (which connect last-mile distribution networks to optical backbone networks) and "broadband network gateways" (BNG) (which sit between broadband users and the backbone network, providing access control, authentication, and similar services).

In response to Bloomberg, Vodafone said that the router vulnerabilities were found and fixed in 2011 and the BNG flaws were found and fixed in 2012. While it has documentation about some optical service node vulnerabilities, Vodafone continued, it has no information about when they were fixed. Further, the network operator said that it has no evidence of issues outside Italy.</p>

Bloomberg hyped this like crazy, but it feels storm-teacuppy here.
bloomberg  huawei  vodafone 
april 2019 by charlesarthur
Making sense of Huawei • Balding's World
Christopher Balding, a co-author of the "<a href="">Who owns Huawei?</a>" paper that I linked to last week, which Huawei sorta-kinda tried to rebut with a 90-minute press conference which ended up mostly confirming what the paper said:
<p>There are a few remaining issues I would like to cover here given that there is some confusion or dispute on these points.

• <strong>All</strong> unions in China are under the umbrella of the All China Federation of Trade Unions and all companies with more than 25 employees are required by law to have unions. Each union, at any level is responsible to the union organization above it. This upward relationship exists all the way so that every union in China is technically a member of the All China Federation of Trade Unions and responsible to its head. This is not an interpretation, this is clear Chinese law in the law on trade unions. Huawei even acknowledges this stating that “Huawei pays a portion of its compensation package to Shenzhen’s Federation of Trade Unions via Huawei’s own Union. Huawei’s Union is registered under Shenzhen’s Federation of Trade Unions.”

• Huawei has argued that this is a non-story because other companies have at times used similar structures. We never claimed this was an entirely unique structure. Our primary claim is that Huawei is not telling the truth by saying they are employee owned private company. </p>
huawei  ownership  paper 
april 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei: why UK is at odds with its cyber-allies • BBC News
Leo Kelion:
<p>Australia concluded in August that it was impossible to "mitigate" the national security risks involved in allowing Huawei to form any part of its 5G network, because next-generation networks would operate in a different way to their predecessors.

The reason for this, it added, was that the relationship between two distinct bits of the network would change.

The first part - "the core" - it said was where the "most sensitive functions occur", including device authentication, voice and data-routing and billing.

The second - "the edge" - referred to equipment including antennae and base stations that is used to capture the radio signals emitted by wireless devices and send them into the core.

The key phrase in a ministerial statement then explained: "The distinction between the core and the edge will disappear over time."

One of the country's spy chiefs, Mike Burgess, later expanded on this, saying that as 5G technologies matured, the expectation was that the distinction between the edge and core "collapses" because "sensitive functions" would begin to move outside of the protected part.

Part of the reason for this, he explained, would be to take advantage of the lower latencies 5G offers - the lag between issuing a command and getting a response. This, for example, could help make it safe to direct surgical robots or remote-controlled vehicles from afar.</p>

However Theresa May thinks this doesn't matter - against the advice of her defence secretary and home secretary (the latter is advised by the security services), she has apparently ruled that Huawei can be used in non-core 5G systems.
huawei  telecoms 
april 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei P30 Pro 'Moon Mode' is mired in new controversy • Android Authority
<p>new testing of this Moon Mode feature suggests Huawei’s method of getting shots like the one above is shady at best and unethical at worst, if the testing results are legitimate. (Android Authority Ed: This sentence has been slightly altered from the original to reflect the ambiguity of the test results).

The official user’s guide for the Huawei P30 Pro describes Moon Mode as such: “Moon Mode helps to adequately capture the beauty of the moon along with fine details like moonbeams and shadows.”

Supposedly, this is how the system works:<br />• A user holds the Huawei P30 Pro towards the moon and zooms in a bit using pinch-to-zoom on the camera.<br />• The P30 Pro identifies (using AI) that the user is trying to take a photo of the moon, and thus suggests Moon Mode.<br />• The user selects Moon Mode and the camera system then “helps you get a clear shot” using the aforementioned algorithms.

Huawei doesn’t go into any specific detail on how the Moon Mode algorithm actually works. From the language in the user’s guide and marketing materials, Huawei seems to suggest that the algorithm takes the information in your specific photo and then enhances that specific image by using known information about the face of the moon to clarify, stabilize, and otherwise “fix” the image.

According to anecdotal research by some industrious photographers though, this is potentially not completely true. According to tests performed by Wang Yue at Zhihu, the Huawei P30 Pro isn’t just enhancing the image information the user captures but actually placing pre-existing imagery of the moon into the photo.</p>

There's a more detailed examination of this (in Chinese) at <a href="">Zhihu</a>. It sure feels like Huawei is streeeeeetching the truth here, which it has done a number of times in its claims. (In its response to AA, it says that it "recognises and optimizes details within an image" but doesn't replace them.) Guess it needs someone in the west to try a picture in a few weeks' time at the full moon.
moon  huawei  photography 
april 2019 by charlesarthur
Who Owns Huawei? • SSRN
Christopher Balding and Donald C. Clarke in an open-access paper:
<p>A number of pertinent facts about Huawei’s structure and ownership are in fact well known and have been outlined many times in the Chinese media, but the myth of Huawei’s employee ownership seems to persist outside of China. This article, drawing on publicly available sources such as media reports, corporate databases, and court cases, aims to refute this myth once and for all.

In summary, we find the following:

• The Huawei operating company is 100% owned by a holding company, which is in turn approximately 1% owned by Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei and 99% owned by an entity called a “trade union committee” for the holding company.

• We know nothing about the internal governance procedures of the trade union committee. We do not know who the committee members or other trade union leaders are, or how they are selected.

• Trade union members have no right to assets held by a trade union.

• What have been called “employee shares” in “Huawei” are in fact at most contractual interests in a profit-sharing scheme.

• Given the public nature of trade unions in China, if the ownership stake of the trade union committee is genuine, and if the trade union and its committee function as trade unions generally function in China, then Huawei may be deemed effectively state-owned.

• Regardless of who, in a practical sense, owns and controls Huawei, it is clear that the employees do not.</p>

The spotlight is really being turned on Huawei now that its global ambitions are so widely known (and the west has fallen behind in 5G). The next year or two could be crucial as more comes out.
huawei  ownership 
april 2019 by charlesarthur
CIA warning over Huawei • The Times
Lucy Fisher and Michael Evans:
<p>American intelligence shown to Britain says that Huawei has taken money from the People’s Liberation Army, China’s National Security Commission and a third branch of the Chinese state intelligence network, according to a UK source.

The US shared the claims with Britain and its other partners in the Five Eyes intelligence alliance — Australia, New Zealand and Canada — earlier this year, with the UK entering the final stages of a wider review into its next generation mobile network rollout.

The funding allegation is the most serious claim linking the world’s largest telecoms equipment manufacturer to the Chinese state. Huawei insists that it is a private company that is independent of influence from the government and has repeatedly denied posing any security risks. Critics, however, warn that China’s laws oblige companies to co-operate with its security branches, and that “backdoors” could be built into software allowing it to spy on or disrupt British communications.

The Whitehall review into plans for Britain’s introduction of 5G will be discussed by Theresa May, cabinet ministers and security chiefs at the National Security Council, expected to be held next week. A Whitehall source said of the review: “I don’t think it’s massively supportive [towards Huawei].”</p>

Obliging cooperation with security branches and building in backdoors is something that the UK's Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) forces too. It's also instructive to notice the sources here: Lucy Fisher is the defence correspondent. This is careful leaking by UK security sources to push a narrative. That doesn't necessarily mean it's untrue; only that this is intended to be aired.
cia  huawei  defence  hacking 
april 2019 by charlesarthur
China spying: the internet's underwater cables are next • Bloomberg
James Stavridis:
<p>Just as the experts are justifiably concerned about the inclusion of espionage “back doors” in Huawei’s 5G technology, western intelligence professionals oppose the company’s engagement in the undersea version, which provides a much bigger bang for the buck because so much data rides on so few cables.

Naturally, Huawei denies any manipulation of the cable sets it is constructing, even though the US and other nations say it is obligated by Chinese law to hand over network data to the government. The US last year restricted federal agencies using from using its 5G equipment; Huawei responded with a lawsuit in federal court. Washington is pressuring its allies to follow its lead — the American ambassador to Germany warned that allowing Chinese companies into its 5G project would mean reduced security cooperation from the US — but this is an uphill battle. Most nations and companies feel that better cell phone service is worth the security risks.

A similar dynamic is playing out underwater. How can the US address the security of undersea cables? There is no way to stop Huawei from building them, or to keep private owners from contracting with Chinese firms on modernizing them, based purely on suspicions. Rather, the US must use its cyber- and intelligence-gathering capability to gather hard evidence of back doors and other security risks. This will be challenging — the Chinese firms are technologically sophisticated and entwined with a virtual police state.</p>

The US and UK are itchy about this because they know they can do it: there's a lot of tapping of cables at the point where they leave the ocean. What if the cables have the tapping built in?
china  huawei  spying  cables  undersea 
april 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei’s P30 Pro raises the bar for low-light photography • The Verge
Vlad Savov:
<p>It will still be a few days before I can publish my full review of the P30 Pro, but I spent this past weekend comparing its camera against Google’s Pixel 3 and struggling to believe my eyes. The Pixel 3’s Night Sight mode is algorithmic magic, granting that camera something akin to superhuman night vision. It requires up to six seconds of exposure time, during which you have to hold the phone steady to obtain a sharp image. Huawei has a similar night mode, but I find that completely unnecessary with the P30 Pro: this camera shoots better low-light photos than Google Night Sight without the need for a long exposure.

Let’s dive into some examples. This first one includes the output from the default Google Pixel camera to give you an idea of what the human eye sees. It’s also an accurate representation of what you’ll be able to obtain using an iPhone without the help of either the flash or RAW image processing. Even adapted to the pre-sunrise darkness in the room, my eyes couldn’t discern any color. Google’s Night Sight image is the best, I’m confident in saying, that any smartphone before the P30 Pro could achieve in the circumstances. And the P30 Pro makes that shot look like a splotchy mess.

<img src="" width="100%" /></p>

I'd love to know how Huawei is doing this; one would have thought that camera sensors were pretty much equal everywhere, and that Google was taking it further by its use of AI. But Huawei is pulling in photons that others lose. One for iFixit to answer, at least in part?

I was going to say that sometimes you want a night shot to look like a night shot, but of course you can just darken it in the edit.
photography  huawei 
april 2019 by charlesarthur
Damning Huawei security report: the top 10 key takeaways • Computer Business Review
Ed Targett:
<p>These are Computer Business Review’s Top 10 takeaways from the <a href="">Huawei security report</a> [pdf].

1: Huawei’s build processes are dangerously poor<br />Huawei’s underlying build process provides “no end-to-end integrity, no good configuration management, no lifecycle management of software components across versions, use of deprecated and out of support tool chains (some of which are non-deterministic) and poor hygiene in the build environments” HCSEC said.

2: Security officials don’t blame Beijing<br />The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) which oversees HCSEC, said it “does not believe that the defects identified are a result of Chinese state interference.”

3: Pledges of a $2bn overhaul mean nothing, yet…<br />Huawei promises to transform its software engineering process through the investment of $2bn over five years are “currently no more than a proposed initial budget for as yet unspecified activities.” Until there is “evidence of its impact on products being used in UK networks” HCSEC has no confidence it will drive change.

4: The vulnerabilities are bad…<br />Vulnerabilities identified in Huawei equipment include unprotected stack overflows in publicly accessible protocols, protocol robustness errors leading to denial of service, logic errors, cryptographic weaknesses, default credentials and many other basic vulnerability types, HCSEC reported.</p>

Also there: old issues aren't fixed, managing the risk will grow, UK operators may have to replace hardware because of the "significant risk", it's using outdated OSs, and the lack of progress is becoming critical. You wonder if this is new? Read on.
huawei  security  hacking 
march 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei bungled router security, leaving kit open to botnets, despite alert from ISP years prior • The Register
Gareth Corfield:
<p>Huawei bungled its response to warnings from an ISP's code review team about a security vulnerability common across its home routers – patching only a subset of the devices rather than all of its products that used the flawed firmware.

Years later, those unpatched Huawei gateways, still vulnerable and still in use by broadband subscribers around the world, were caught up in a Mirai-variant botnet that exploited the very same hole flagged up earlier by the ISP's review team.

The Register has seen the ISP's vulnerability assessment given to Huawei in 2013 that explained how a programming blunder in the firmware of its HG523a and HG533 broadband gateways could be exploited by hackers to hijack the devices, and recommended the remote-command execution hole be closed.

Our sources have requested anonymity.

After receiving the security assessment, which was commissioned by a well-known ISP, Huawei told the broadband provider it had fixed the vulnerability, and had rolled out a patch to HG523a and HG533 devices in 2014, our sources said. However, other Huawei gateways in the HG series, used by other internet providers, suffered from the same flaw because they used the same internal software, and remained vulnerable and at risk of attack for years because Huawei did not patch them.

One source described the bug as a "trivially exploitable remote code execution issue in the router."</p>

And exploited it was. Repeatedly. But Huawei would only patch as it was told about exploits, model by model, despite them all using the same firmware.
huawei  security  hacking 
march 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei CFO had a penchant for rival Apple products, it seems • Bloomberg
Natalie Obiko Pearson:
<p>When Canadian police arrested Meng Wanzhou at the behest of the US on a Dec. 1 stopover at Vancouver International Airport, they seized her iPhone 7 Plus, a MacBook Air and an iPad Pro, according to a court filing Friday.

Her defence lawyers filed an application seeking a copy of the data stored on the equipment, and for those devices to be subsequently sealed. The crown prosecution consented and the devices will be transferred "to the British Columbia Supreme Court Registry pending an assessment of solicitor-client privilege," Canada’s justice department said in an email.

Huawei has been known to get touchy when lesser employees have used iPhones -- it demoted and cut the pay of two employees held responsible after the company’s official New Year’s greetings went out "via Twitter for iPhone." China’s biggest telecoms gear maker, which supplanted Apple as the world’s No. 2 smartphone brand in 2018, is gunning for the top spot.</p>

So.. not a Huawei phone, tablet or computer? This is like Tim Cook being found using a Surface Go and a Windows Phone.
huawei  apple 
march 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei shows where the real US-China imbalance lies • Bloomberg
Tim Culpan:
<p> the Shenzhen-based telecom equipment maker has sought to recruit foreign journalists for its public-relations team, taken out advertisements in overseas media to press its case, and intensified its activity on Twitter to include criticism of the US legal system and “a call for truth and justice for the good of global citizens.”

The irony is that no foreign organization could dream of attempting the same in China. This imbalance has worked in Huawei’s favor.

A months-long PR and lobbying campaign overseas has softened the stance of foreign governments and regulators, helping combat the perception that the company is a conduit for espionage by Beijing. That’s moved it toward the company’s likely end goal: winning more business with telecom operators.

The dichotomy isn’t unique to Huawei. China’s government has also leveraged the openness of developed-nation democracies to push its message, while refusing the same opportunities at home.

China blocks its citizens from accessing Twitter, yet the country’s state-controlled media and government agencies have dozens of accounts with the US social media service that they use to spread Beijing’s agenda. One editor-in-chief even regularly criticizes foreign governments on his personal timeline, a practice that would probably land him in detention if it was directed at his own government.

Huawei and Meng may have credible arguments to make against US and Canadian authorities, but the real victory for them is in being able to make them at all.</p>
huawei  china 
march 2019 by charlesarthur
Thinking about working for a Chinese company? First, find out if it’s a ‘Lenovo’ or a ‘Huawei’ • SupChina
Elliott Zaagman:
<p>There has been much written highlighting the achievements of each company in building their respective corporate cultures, and rightfully so. 2014’s The Lenovo Way, by executives Gina Qiao and Yolanda Conyers, and 2016’s Huawei: Leadership, Culture, and Connectivity, by Tian Tao, David De Cremer, and Wu Chunbo, tell the stories of how each company achieved global success through developing strong cultures.

However, when engaging with the employees themselves, a more complex picture of these two cultures emerges. In preparation for this piece, I spoke with 27 current and former Huawei and Lenovo employees, four of whom had experience at both companies. The majority of my respondents only agreed to speak off the record or on a condition that their identities not be revealed. Additionally, information was taken from anonymous online employer review forums such as Glassdoor, Indeed, and Quora. In an attempt to assure accuracy and reliability, such online forums were used to identify patterns or trends, rather than a few disgruntled individuals.

Employees of both firms seemed to describe Lenovo’s culture and general view of its people in a more trusting and optimistic way, while Huawei’s general perspective seemed to be one of mistrust of its people. “People learn not to trust each other at Huawei,” said a former Huawei and Lenovo employee. “At Lenovo, it’s quite the opposite, very trusting. It is a very comfortable place to work. At Lenovo, the assumption is that everyone is trustworthy until they prove otherwise, while at Huawei, everyone is assumed to be untrustworthy until they prove to be worthy, and even then, people will be skeptical of you.”</p>

A great read; of course Lenovo's culture has been driven by its acquisitions, largely of American businesses. Huawei's is all home-grown. Worth knowing in the current climate.
lenovo  huawei  culture 
march 2019 by charlesarthur
GCHQ chief warns on Huawei security threat • Financial Times
David Bond:
<p>Jeremy Fleming said on Monday that the UK needed greater understanding of the implications of Beijing’s technological ambitions.

“We have to understand the opportunities and threats from China’s technological offer,” he told an event organised by the International Institute for Strategic Studies in Singapore.

“Understand the global nature of supply chains and service provision irrespective of the flag of the supplier. Take a clear view on the implications of China’s technological acquisition strategy in the west. And help our governments decide which parts of this expansion can be embraced, which need risk management and which will always need a sovereign or allied solution.”

Mr Fleming reiterated that GCHQ and the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre would not compromise on the standards they expect from Huawei.

A report by an oversight board set up to test Huawei equipment and software used by UK telecoms suppliers is due to be published soon and is expected to be severely critical of the company’s cyber security standards.</p>

You realise that if you were a minister whose portfolio intersected in any way with the security services that this is how they'd lobby you: not with hard evidence but with a steady drip-drip-drip of teeth-sucking, controlled wincing, and eyebrow-raising. Imagine it day after day, week after week: "minister, if I could just have a word..."
huawei  gchq 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
Five reasons foldable phones are a bad idea • ExtremeTech
Ryan Whitwam:
<p>Smartphones used to come in all shapes and sizes — there were phones with keyboards, phones with rotating cameras, and phones with 3D screens. Smartphone design has standardized around the flat, glass slab in recent years, but things are starting to get weird again. Multiple smartphone makers seem to think 2019 is the time to make science-fictional folding phones a reality.

Devices like the Samsung Galaxy Fold and Huawei Mate X look cool in demos, but foldable phones are probably a long, long way from being any good. Here are five reasons the current crop of devices is going to be bad.</p>

Briefly: plastic is plastic ("You encounter a lot of things throughout the day that are harder than plastic, but few that are harder than Gorilla Glass. While your flat smartphone can ride around in your pocket or bag with keys, pens, and coins, a foldable phone might come out looking likes a scuffed mess. Oh, your phone folds inward like the Galaxy Fold? Good luck never getting dust trapped in there when you close it."); they will break; the designs are still clunky; they're too pricey; app support will never arrive.

Of the five, the last one - app support - is what's probably going to make these "meh" on Android. As Whitwam says, "Android apps didn’t work well on tablets, and there’s no reason to think it’ll be any better with foldables."

If Apple does a foldable, on the other hand, you know developers will be falling over themselves to support it in surprising ways. The potential for games where the fold is the horizon is huge, for example.
foldable  samsung  huawei  apps  android 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
A few Mate X musings after finally getting to touch it • Android Authority
Kris Carlon:
<p>Seeing the Mate X up close was enough to satisfy any concerns I might have had about its overall build quality (it’s surprisingly good), but it also confirmed my other concern about the screen. A bumpy kind of dimpling is noticeable where the flexible part happens, and I can only imagine that will only become more pronounced over time. Like anything you fold and refold repeatedly, it’s going to degrade.

It’s the exact same issue Samsung will face with the Fold. Unlike Huawei, Samsung wouldn’t let anyone touch the Galaxy Fold at MWC 2019. It’s very clear that neither of these products are fully ready yet, but the impulse to be first is real. Perhaps Samsung knew that by keeping the Fold behind glass it wouldn’t get articles like this written about it, even if it probably is in a similar state to the Mate X.

Huawei assures me that by the time the Mate X goes on sale the display will be in much better shape. While of course Huawei would say that, it’s also hard to lambast “what might be” given Huawei’s generally good attention to detail. The same goes for Samsung. Maybe the various wrinkles are ironed out in the months to come, maybe they’re not, we’ll just have to wait and see.</p>
huawei  foldable 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
Samsung expects Galaxy Fold supply to be limited, hints at luxury launch • The Verge
Tom Warren:
<p>“We’ll have less supply than we would of the S10 at launch, and also how it goes to market is really important to us,” explains [Samsung UK director of product, services and commercial strategy Kate] Beaumont. “This is a super premium device, and we want to make sure it has a concierge-like service and experience, so it’s not going to be on display in all stores. You’re not going to see it on the stands, we want to make sure it’s a very personal experience. There will be quite intensive aftercare that goes with it as well."

That means you won’t be walking into your local store to try out the Galaxy Fold, and then sign a contract and walk off. It sounds like Samsung is taking a similar approach to how Apple launched its $10,000 Apple Watch Edition, with supplies restricted to select retailers.

…“We considered a lot of options [for the fold direction - innie v outie],” says Beaumont. “There’s things like if you want to put a case on it, usability, durability, and we feel that having the screen on the inside is the best way to protect that screen. We have the technology to do a fold that is very very tiny, as of course if you have the fold on the outside it doesn’t take quite the same amount of research and development to get that device to fold as it does something that is folding with a much lower angle degree on it.”</p>

Neat bit of shade on Huawei there. (Of note: Apple's Watch Edition was discontinued after v1.)
samsung  fold  huawei 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei Mate X hands-on: our foldable future • The Verge
Vlad Savov:
<p>There are still huge questions about what the software UX will be like, how durable and scratch-resistant that wraparound display will be over the long term, and how long the battery will last if you use this 5G tablet to its fullest. I can’t answer those today, but I can tell you what I know about the Huawei Mate X so far.

The Mate X’s OLED display is plastic, not glass as with most smartphones today. That’s going to be an unavoidable feature of all foldable devices going forward, because glass doesn’t like to fold. Nothing about the plastic surface gave me trouble or cause for concern, however. It has comparable friction and identical responsiveness to a regular glass-covered phone, and the only issue is the potential for more scratches owing to the plastic’s softness.

Viewing angles, contrast, color saturation, vibrancy, and uniformity all look as good as you’ll find in most smartphones today. I find the plastic display to be a little less reflective than its glass counterparts, which I like and prefer.

As to the all-important question of whether I can see or feel the spine in the middle of the screen where the fold happens, the answer is “no.” My time with the Mate X hasn’t yet been long enough to make that a categorical statement, but this is definitely the flattest foldable I’ve yet come across…

…The shape of the Mate X when it’s semi-open is great for perching it up on a surface — you can basically use the thinner rear part of the display as a kickstand.

…The hinge feels almost gritty in its operation. There’s no tactile smoothness to speak of, you just have to kinda shove it open. I suppose Huawei prioritized durability with this design, as the hinge has plenty of resistance and feels like it will withstand a lot of opening and closing — it just won’t feel particularly elegant or smooth while doing it.</p>

Having an "outie" (the fold screen on the outside) is going to lead to tons of scratches in no time.
huawei  foldable 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
Mate X: what Huawei's $2,600 foldable 5G phone with three screens feels like • CNET
Jessica Dolcourt:
<p>Huawei's vision for the Mate X is of a phone you mostly use in its "closed" position, but open up when you want to be entertained or more productive. There's a screen on the back that could be useful for taking selfies: The phone's four rear cameras have been codesigned with Leica.

The "main" screen configuration is a 6.6in display that Huawei thinks you'll use most. Unfold it outward to get an 8in edge-to-edge OLED display with no notch (there is a camera, though). When it's folded up, the back is a slightly smaller 6.4in screen and a sidebar with the rear camera array. In the open position, the sidebar becomes a grippable handle, which Huawei whimsically calls the "Falcon Wing" design because of its swooping shape. The idea is to hold the Mate X one-handed, and use your other hand to tap and swipe. Fold the phone closed again and one side aligns with the handle to give it all a flat look. And yes, there's still a bendable hinge.

My colleague Roger Cheng had hands-on time with the phone, noting that even though the phone is large it feels light, but it will definitely be a two-handed experience. Here are his thoughts:

"The Mate X closes flush as promised, with little gap between the two sides of the phone. Folding the phone is a little scary, and the movement is a little stiff, but Huawei consumer CEO Richard Yu says it's tested for 100,000 folds. When it's closed, the phone knows which side of the device you're facing. It'll automatically flip sides when you face it.

"For such a large device, it feels pretty light. The spine housing the camera works as a pretty good ergonomic handle when unfolded. But good luck folding it with one hand - I almost dropped it. When folded, it did feel a little thick. There's a bulkiness to it that's unavoidable."</p>

6.6in which then becomes 8in? That doesn't sound like a lot extra for $2,600.

Foldables are interesting. Let's get into peoples' hands and see what the real use cases are.
foldable  huawei 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
How Huawei targets Apple trade secrets • The Information
Wayne Ma:
<p>To arrange the November meeting [with the maker of Apple's heart sensor component for its Watch], the Huawei engineer first dangled a potential business deal with the supplier, according to messages reviewed by The Information.

“Our design is similar to Apple’s,” the engineer wrote in a text message to the executive with the supplier. “Let’s first talk generally about the cost of a prototype before we provide the schematic,” he wrote. “Sales of Huawei wearables this year are expected to hit 1 million units,” he added.

After the executive expressed reservations about making a component that was too similar to Apple’s, the Huawei engineer backpedaled. “The shape of the product won’t be the same,” the engineer said.

At one point, the Huawei engineer emailed the executive a photo of material it was considering for a heart rate sensor. “Feel free to suggest a design you already have experience with,” the engineer wrote.

The Huawei engineer attended the supplier meeting with four Huawei researchers in tow. The Huawei team spent the next hour and a half pressing the supplier for details about the Apple Watch, the executive said.

“They were trying their luck, but we wouldn’t tell them anything,” the executive said. After that, Huawei went silent.

In another incident, Huawei is suspected of copying a connector Apple developed in 2016 that made the MacBook Pro hinge thinner while still attaching the computer’s display to its logic board, according to a person familiar with the matter. A similar component, made of 13 similar parts assembled in the same manner, showed up last year in Huawei’s MateBook Pro, which was released as a competitor to Apple’s MacBooks, the person said. Apple submitted a patent for the component in 2016, and it remains pending.

Huawei approached multiple Apple suppliers with expertise making the component and provided them with the same schematic. Those suppliers recognized the component as Apple’s design and refused to make it for Huawei, the person said. But Huawei eventually found a willing manufacturer.

In response to questions from The Information, Huawei said it requires its suppliers to uphold a high standard of ethics and expects them to honor their confidentiality obligations to other customers when communicating with Huawei.</p>

Huawei, the new Samsung, and then some. Odd that they can't just disassemble things to figure this out.
Huawei  apple  secrets  patents 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei accuses US of ‘political’ campaign against telecoms group • Financial Times
Yuan Yang:
<p>[Huawei chairman] Eric Xu questioned the US’s motives on Wednesday, pointing to Washington’s extensive surveillance programmes.

“Is [the US] truly thinking about cyber security and protecting the privacy of other countries’ citizens, or do they have other motives?” he said.

“Some say that because these countries are using Huawei equipment, it makes it harder for US agencies to obtain these countries’ data,” he added.

Mr Xu also revealed that Huawei would spend more than $2bn to restructure the code used in its telecoms services worldwide after a series of “confrontational” meetings with Britain’s cyber security agency over the issue.

The company is likely to face further criticism from the Huawei Cyber Security Evaluation Centre, the UK watchdog that reviews the company’s security systems, which last year noted the “repeated discovery of critical shortfalls” in the group’s technical processes. Last week, Huawei told the UK government it would take up to five years to address the concerns.

According to Mr Xu, the watchdog had demanded that Huawei rewrite the code it uses in telecoms products to be clearer and more readable, including legacy code written decades ago…

…Mr Xu also dismissed concerns about Huawei being blocked in Australia and New Zealand, saying: “The Australian market isn’t as big as [the Chinese city of] Guangzhou, and the New Zealand market isn’t as big as my hometown.”</p>
huawei  us 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
UK smartphone shipments fell 14% in Q4 2018 • Strategy Analytics
<p>Neil Mawston, Executive Director at Strategy Analytics, added, “Apple shipped 3.0 million smartphones and captured a dominant 41% marketshare in the UK during Q4 2018. Apple has a prestigious brand and extensive retail presence across the UK market. Despite a slight decline from a year ago, Apple’s grip on the UK smartphone market remains fairly tight and the iPhone has two times more marketshare than closest rival Samsung.”

Woody Oh, Director at Strategy Analytics, added, “Samsung clung on to second place with 19% smartphone marketshare in the UK during Q4 2018, down from 21% a year ago. Samsung’s UK smartphone marketshare has more than halved during the past six years. Samsung is facing intense competitive pressure from Huawei, who is targeting Samsung’s core segments in the midrange and premium-tier with popular models such as the P20. Huawei’s UK smartphone marketshare has leapt from 8% in Q4 2017 to 12% in Q4 2018. Huawei is growing fast in the UK, due to heavy co-marketing of its models with major carriers like EE.”</p>

One other thing: Q4 is the biggest sales quarter of the year. Huawei is clearly eating Samsung's breakfast, lunch and tea.
Smartphone  uk  apple  samsung  huawei 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei sting offers rare glimpse of US targeting Chinese giant • Bloomberg
Erik Schatzker:
<p>Like all inventors, Khan was paranoid about knockoffs. Even so, he was caught by surprise when Huawei, a potential customer, began to behave suspiciously after receiving the meticulously packed sample [of a screen coated on one side with artificial diamond]. Khan was more surprised when the US Federal Bureau of Investigation drafted him and Akhan’s chief operations officer, Carl Shurboff, as participants in its investigation of Huawei. The FBI asked them to travel to Las Vegas and conduct a meeting with Huawei representatives at last month’s Consumer Electronics Show. Shurboff was outfitted with surveillance devices and recorded the conversation while a Bloomberg Businessweek reporter watched from safe distance.

This investigation, which hasn’t previously been made public, is separate from the recently announced grand jury indictments against Huawei. On Jan. 28, federal prosecutors in Brooklyn charged the company and its chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, with multiple counts of fraud and conspiracy. In a separate case, prosecutors in Seattle charged Huawei with theft of trade secrets, conspiracy, and obstruction of justice, claiming that one of its employees stole a part from a robot, known as Tappy, at a T-Mobile US Inc. facility in Bellevue, Wash. “These charges lay bare Huawei’s alleged blatant disregard for the laws of our country and standard global business practices,” Christopher Wray, the FBI director, said in a press release accompanying the Jan. 28 indictments. “Today should serve as a warning that we will not tolerate businesses that violate our laws, obstruct justice, or jeopardize national and economic well-being.” Huawei has denied the charges…

The first sign of trouble came two months later, in May, when Huawei missed the deadline to return the sample. Shurboff says his emails to Han requesting its immediate return were ignored. The following month, Han wrote that Huawei had been performing “standard” tests on the sample and included a photo showing a big scratch on its surface. Finally, a package from Huawei showed up at Gurnee on Aug. 2.

Shurboff remembers opening it. It looked just like the package Akhan had sent months earlier. Inside the cardboard box was the usual protective packaging—air bags, plastic case, gel insert, and wax paper. But he could tell something was wrong when he picked up the case. It rattled. The unscratchable Miraj sample wasn’t just scratched; it was broken in two, and three shards of diamond glass were missing.

Shurboff says he knew there was no way the sample could have been damaged in shipping—all the pieces would still be there in the case.</p>
huawei  diamond 
february 2019 by charlesarthur
Huawei MateBook 13 review: sophomore struggles • The Verge
Dan Seifert generally likes Huawei's PC. This detail caught my eye:
<p>Like the MacBook Air, the MateBook 13 has two USB-C ports. But unlike the MacBook Air, neither of them support Thunderbolt 3. Further, the left port supports data transfer and charging, but not video out, while the port on the right side supports data transfer and video out, but not charging. That means it’s not possible to connect the MateBook 13 to an external display and charger with just one cable, which is something every other laptop with USB-C I’ve tested is capable of. It’s a strange and frustrating limitation. The MateBook 13 also lacks any USB-A ports, but Huawei does include a small hub with USB-A, HDMI, and VGA ports in the box. Too bad you can’t use that hub to charge the laptop and connect it to an external display at the same time.</p>

USB-C is still something of a mess for those who aren't really cautious. It's still at the stage we were with PCs in the late 1980s: you couldn't take it for granted that one would be truly compatible with another.
huawei  usbc 
january 2019 by charlesarthur
US authorities unveil sweeping set of charges against China’s Huawei • WSJ
Kate O’Keeffe and Aruna Viswanatha:
<p>The Trump administration unveiled a sweeping set of actions—including criminal charges—against China’s Huawei Technologies in its latest salvo against the telecom giant, with authorities unsealing a set of indictments just days before US-China trade talks are set to resume.

In a pair of cases unsealed Monday, federal prosecutors accused Huawei of violating US sanctions on Iran and of stealing trade secrets from a US business partner, portraying the company as a serial violator of US laws and global business practices.

The charges contained in separate indictments in Brooklyn, NY, and Washington state were detailed by senior officials from the departments of Justice, Commerce and Homeland Security on the first day the government reopened after a 35-day shutdown—and just two days before negotiators for the US and China are set to resume trade talks in Washington, D.C.</p>

Now it's getting serious. Huawei clearly violated the Obama-era sanctions against selling equipment to Iran: the evidence <a href="">collected by Reuters</a> shows as much. The "trade secrets" is about <a href="">T-Mobile</a>. So this isn't new, in that sense.
huawei  us  china 
january 2019 by charlesarthur
Federal prosecutors pursuing criminal case against Huawei for alleged theft of trade secrets • WSJ
Dan Strumpf, Nicole Hong and Aruna Viswanatha:
<p>Federal prosecutors are pursuing a criminal investigation of China’s Huawei Technologies Co. for allegedly stealing trade secrets from U.S. business partners, including the technology behind a robotic device that T-Mobile US Inc. used to test smartphones, according to people familiar with the matter.

The investigation grew in part out of civil lawsuits against Huawei, including <a href="">one in which a Seattle jury found Huawei liable</a> for misappropriating robotic technology from T-Mobile’s Bellevue, Wash., lab, the people familiar with the matter said. The probe is at an advanced stage and could lead to an indictment soon, they said.

A Justice Department spokesman declined to comment.

A Huawei spokesman declined to comment. The company contested the T-Mobile case, but conceded that two employees acted improperly.</p>

US feds starting the year as they mean to go on: by finding old civil cases and seeing whether they can hang a criminal case around it.
huawei  us 
january 2019 by charlesarthur
Poland calls for 'joint' EU-Nato stance on Huawei after spying arrest • The Guardian
<p>Poland’s internal affairs minister, Joachim Brudziński, called for the European Union and Nato to work on a joint position over whether to exclude Huawei from their markets.

Brudziński said Poland wanted to continue cooperating with China but that a discussion was needed on whether to exclude Huawei from some markets.

“There are concerns about Huawei within Nato as well. It would make most sense to have a joint stance, among EU member states and Nato members,” he told broadcaster RMF FM.

“We want relations with China that are good, intensive and attractive for both sides,” he added.

Huawei, the world’s biggest producer of telecommunications equipment, is facing intense scrutiny in the west over its relationship with China’s government.

In August, the US president, Donald Trump, signed a bill that barred the US government from using Huawei equipment and is considering an executive order that would also ban US companies from doing so.

In December, Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Canada at the request of the US, which wants her extradited to face charges that she misled banks about the company’s business dealings in Iran.

Seeking to distance itself from the Polish incident, Huawei on Saturday said in a statement it had sacked Wang, whose “alleged actions have no relation to the company”.</p>

How this (and ZTE's position) plays out over the rest of this year could be crucial to China's position in 5G, and the progress of 5G. If this is also applied to Huawei handsets (a faint but real possibility) it would really put a crimp on things. Expect recriminations if that happens.
Huawei  smartphone  china 
january 2019 by charlesarthur
Third Canadian detained in China amid Huawei dispute • Reuters
David Ljunggren:
<p>A third Canadian has been detained in China following the arrest of a Chinese technology executive in Vancouver, a Canadian government official said on Wednesday amid a diplomatic dispute also involving the United States.

The detentions of the Canadians followed the Dec. 1 arrest in Vancouver of Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of the Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, at the request of the United States, which is engaged in a trade war with China.</p>

Another victim of Trump's transactional diplomacy: the Chinese expect he'll ignore US law and trade them for Meng once she's extradited.
canada  huawei  trump 
december 2018 by charlesarthur
Huawei Watch GT review: When hardware and software don’t mesh • Ars Technica
Valentina Palladino:
<p>The Watch GT has numerous activity- and sleep-tracking sensors inside, including an accelerometer, gyroscope, barometer, optical heart-rate monitor, and built-in GPS.

What it doesn't have are NFC technology for contactless payments or onboard storage for saving music. Both would have complemented the onboard GPS by allowing users to go for a run without their wallets or phones. The Watch GT also doesn't support Wi-Fi on its own, meaning it won't receive alerts when your smartphone is out of Bluetooth range. This is a feature we take for granted now on high-end smartwatches like Apple Watches and Wear OS devices, making it noticeably and confusingly absent on the Watch GT.

But Huawei equipped the Watch GT with a battery that's designed to last a whopping two weeks on a single charge, with heart-rate monitoring turned on. With GPS turned on as well, you should get up to 22 hours of battery life. Huawei goes so far as to say that you could get 30 days of life when you turn heart-rate monitoring off.

I wouldn't want to turn off heart-rate monitoring because that's one of the main reasons I wear a smartwatch at all. If you wear a device like this to keep track of your health in general, I don't recommend turning this feature off. I didn't and my Watch GT was down to 50% after wearing it for six days and nights, recording one-hour long workouts on all but one of those days. That's still a stellar battery life and one that puts those of other smartwatches to shame.</p>

The lack of Wi-Fi helps explain the long battery life - but also means you don't get alerts when out of your phone's Bluetooth range. But her key complaint is that you can't get other exercise apps, such as RunKeeper and so on. That's unlikely to change.
huawei  smartwatch 
december 2018 by charlesarthur
SoftBank slams the door on Chinese 5G investment • Nikkei Asian Review
Minoru Satake:
<p> SoftBank Group has decided not to use Chinese equipment in its 5G business. The decision comes after the Japanese government compiled a procurement guideline for telecommunications equipment that effectively bans purchases from Huawei Technologies and other Chinese companies.

The Japanese technology conglomerate is the only major telecom in the country that uses Huawei and ZTE equipment in its 4G systems, and will determine whether it has to find other makers.

SoftBank's decision comes amid rising security concerns about Chinese-made equipment. Washington has already banned Huawei and ZTE from the US 5G market, and has imposed sanctions on Chinese companies for their dealings with Iran.

Australia and New Zealand have already banned Chinese makers from building their 5G networks.

Although not citing specific companies, Japan has shut the door on Chinese telecom purchases by central government ministries and its Self-Defense Forces.

Japanese telecoms plan to start testing 5G services next year with the goal of full-scale rollout of commercialized 5G services in 2020.

SoftBank had been partnering with Huawei in 5G trials.</p>

OK, so Japan has been carefully cosying up to the US, and wants to keep China at arm's length; this fits into that. Possibly SoftBank received some visits from Japanese government sources.
softbank  huawei  5g 
december 2018 by charlesarthur
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