Posted on August 17, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Android, Mobile with 14 Comments

Huawei’s limited extension to do business with U.S. businesses has expired, casting doubts about its ability to update its Android phones going forward.

As you may recall, the U.S. government put Huawei on its so-called Entity List, essentially blacklisting the firm from doing business with U.S. companies. But has twice extended the time frame, mostly to appease rural U.S. telecom companies that needed access to Huawei equipment. So during that extension period, it’s been able to provide security and feature updates, plus app updates, from Google to owners of its Android handsets.

But with the extension now expired, it’s not clear exactly what will happen. The expiration should impact users of Huawei smartphones that were originally sold before mid-2019, so the P30 Pro or older. Newer Huawei handsets do not ship with Google applications and services, and might not be as impacted by the newly-imposed blacklisting because they use the open-source version of Android and a Huawei app store.

Huawei says it is “monitoring the situation and assessing the potential impact.” But with the firm exiting the flagship mobile chipset business too, it’s unclear how Huawei’s smartphone business can move forward outside of its home market.

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