Skip to main content

Huawei tries to make a splash in the U.S. with the Mate 9, but carriers may foil plans

Huawei Mate 9 Porsche Design
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends
Huawei is trying to make a splash in the U.S. with high-end flagship smartphones, but the Chinese company isn’t receiving a warm welcome.

The Wall Street Journal reports that U.S. carriers are hesitant to work with Huawei for two main reasons — poor brand recognition in the U.S., and security concerns with the Chinese company’s networking equipment. The latter issue primarily stems from a 2012 congressional report that suggested U.S. carriers should steer clear of using Huawei gear as “China might use it to spy on Americans.”

Huawei already sells budget devices in the U.S., but they aren’t sold by carriers. You can only purchase them on Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, and various other retailers — this will likely also be the case for the high-end Mate 9 phone that’s launching in the U.S. There’s no price or release date for the U.S. variant yet, but it goes for about 700 euros (around $760 U.S.) in Europe.

The report from the WSJ also sources a U.S. Huawei manager who says the company hasn’t figured out how to deal with technical obstacles in regard to cellular standards. Verizon and Sprint use CDMA networks, and Huawei would have to adapt its processors to be compatible with the networks to be successful in the U.S.

The report claims Verizon and Sprint also do not see much of a reason to add Huawei’s phones to their roster of devices, what with the cold shoulder from the U.S. government and an already crowded market. The Chinese company is hopeful in working with AT&T — it certainly isn’t on good terms with T-Mobile, considering the two are locked in a patent dispute.

Huawei is the third largest smartphone manufacturer, behind Apple and Samsung. Selling high-end, expensive phones in the U.S. is key to its global strategy of claiming the top spot.

Editors' Recommendations

Julian Chokkattu
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Julian is the mobile and wearables editor at Digital Trends, covering smartphones, fitness trackers, smartwatches, and more…
SpaceX and United Launch Alliance win launch contracts for U.S. Air Force
SpaceX Falcon 9

The U.S. Air Force has announced it is has chosen two companies to perform its rocket launches over the next several years: SpaceX and United Launch Alliance (ULA). In total, the contract with SpaceX will be worth $316 million and the contract with ULA will be worth $337 million.

The decision was made by the Air Force's Space and Missile Systems Center and the National Reconnaissance Office, and Phase 2 of the contract begins this year and runs to 2024, with the first launches expected in 2022.

Read more
Huawei says its priority is survival as U.S. continues targeting the company
huawei p40 pro hands on features price photos release date camera

Huawei has responded to the U.S. government’s decision to extend restrictions against the company during its annual Global Analyst Summit.  Responding to a question about the impact of the new changes on its consumer business, Huawei’s rotating chairman Guo Ping said:

“The priority for Huawei is to seek survival. Survival is the key word for us, at the moment.”

Read more
U.S. Senate reportedly warns members not to use Zoom
The U.S. Capitol building

The United States Senate is the latest to abandon videoconferencing app Zoom over its privacy issues, according to a report in the Financial Times.

The Senate's sergeant-at-arms has warned all senators not to use the service, which has been plagued by concerns over security and privacy. The report states senators were asked to use alternative platforms for videoconferencing but the warning stopped short of banning Zoom completely.

Read more