Last week, the Trump administration barred American companies from selling to Huawei Technologies unless they first obtained a license from the government. The Trump administration has argued that Huawei, which is the world’s second-largest smartphone maker, is a threat to American security. In response, Silicon Valley giant Google has announced that they are barring Huawei from access to much of its software and services.
Google has claimed, however, that existing phones will largely be unaffected. Huawei will also be able to access the public version of Android but won’t be able to access apps and services provided by Google.
This could mean that popular services and apps like Gmail, YouTube, and Google Maps, among others, will be unavailable on Huwei phones moving forward. However, customers might be able to install the apps and services after they buy the phone. Still, customers may not want to deal with the hassle, and many services such as Google Maps might not work.
Most of these services are actually banned by the Chinese government within China itself. The government has instead encouraged the use of domestic options, such as Tencent and WeChat. However, roughly half of Huawei’s phone sales come from outside of China and international customers tend to prefer Google’s apps.
The ban on Huawei comes amid a much larger trade war between the United States and China. Both countries have been slapping tariffs on one another and trading barbs through the media. So far, there is little indication that either side will back down. Stock markets have been volatile and some analysts fear the trade war could spark a recession.