Had the U.S. not interfered in Huawei’s phone business in 2019 and 2020, there is little doubt that the company would be the largest smartphone manufacturer in the world right now. On May 16th, 2019, the U.S. placed the company on its Entity List banning it from accessing its U.S. supply chain that it spent $18 billion on the year before. It also blocked the company from using Google’s apps including the licensed version of Android.
Huawei is making the switch from Hardware to software as it looks to be the next Google
Huawei will reportedly use HarmonyOS 2.0 on the P50 series
Neil Shah, research director at Counterpoint Research, stated that “Huawei is doubling down on pivoting to a software/cloud and services company.” He notes that thanks to the restrictions placed on Huawei by the U.S., the firm is “unable to procure critical semiconductor components and related tech” from the states. Shah says that Huawei’s focus has turned from hardware to software “and with this effort is becoming like Google.”
Will says that the U.S. doesn’t have easy pickings on Huawei now that it has already jammed up the firm’s U.S. supply chain and chip supplies. Software will be harder for the U.S. to screw around with, he says. “It will be more protected when talking about geopolitics from the U.S.,” according to Wong.