Huawei wants to resume production of 5G smartphones despite US
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Huawei wants to resume production of 5G smartphones despite US sanctions

Chinese company Huawei plans to resume production of 5G-enabled smartphones next year, bypassing US sanctions, the Financial Times reports. Going forward, the company wants to regain its share of the smartphone market, where it once held a very strong position.

    Huawei Mate 50 //Image source: Huawei

Huawei Mate 50 //Image source: Huawei

Huawei, once a leader in the smartphone market, has become hostage to geopolitical tensions between the US and China and has lost access to advanced smartphone chipsets since sanctions were imposed in 2019. In 2021, the smartphone-related consumer business revenue fell by 50% YoY, losing ground not only in the international but also in the local Chinese market. Washington has long restricted Huawei’s access to American 5G smartphone technology, but the Chinese company is actively developing workarounds. This was reported to the FT by several independent sources familiar with the matter.

One way is to redesign smartphones without using subsidized technologies. Before sanctions were tightened in the US, Huawei used Kirin chipsets developed by its company HiSilicon and released by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC). The latter refused to release processors due to sanctions. Now Huawei is redesigning smartphones to use less advanced chips, but also with 5G that can be manufactured by Chinese companies themselves. It is true that such solutions may not be competitive in today’s market.

Another way to circumvent the sanctions could be cooperation with companies that sell cases for smartphones – models with built-in modules that support 5G connections, such as Shenzhen Soyea Technology products, are on sale. In September, state-owned mobile operator China Telecom began selling the Huawei Mate 50 with similar cases, similar to how Soyea began production for the Huawei P50 Pro.

    Image source: Huawei Central

Image source: Huawei Central

Huawei’s work to circumvent American restrictions is also extremely important for official Beijing, which is striving for technological self-sufficiency. The authorities’ plan could be a potential driver to help Huawei jump into the 5G race. However, according to IDC experts, Huawei is in an extremely unfavorable position due to restrictions from the US – it will take a very long time for the company to build the necessary supply chain, so if successful the rest of the world will already enter the 6G era . As a representative of Huawei himself joked, the company is so far the only manufacturer selling 4G smartphones in the 5G era.

Meanwhile, Chinese consumers are dissatisfied with the price-performance ratio of Huawei smartphones without 5G support. According to FT, citing a repair service rep in Shanghai, since the Mate 50 was released, hundreds of people have asked him to redesign the model to support fifth-gen communications – some have even brought back old Mate 40s in which the corresponding chips are present, literally with a request to solder them into novelties.

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Johnson Smith

Johnson Smith is interested in Home Theater & Audio, Smart Tech, Google News & Products, How To, Apple News & Products, Cell Phones, Automotive Technology.

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