Huawei’s 5G technology continues to make headway in the market. For example, the Chinese company has been chosen to supply 5G network technology in the United Kingdom. In the United States, the government is looking to tech giants to develop a rival 5G network. Microsoft, Dell, and AT&T are three names currently named as being involved in the project.
A report from the WSJ suggests other companies might also come into the fold to scale up the 5G network. It seems the US government wants to create a standard for engineering 5G infrastructure. Microsoft and its partners (Dell and AT&T both work with Redmond) would create a network that could be tapped into by any manufacturer.
In basic terms, the US is ensuring Huawei’s 5G tech won’t enter the country. However, a standard could also allow other countries to adopt an alternative to Huawei.
According to the report, this may not even be a choice. It suggests the US government will insist allies don’t use Huawei 5G infrastructure. Of course, some countries are already on board with the Chinese company.
As for Huawei, the company wants to work with the US government on 5G. It insists if the country does not collaborate it will take 2 years before it can reach the same standard.
“If the U.S. wants 5G hardware and software developed by a U.S. or European company, the government should encourage companies to begin negotiations with Huawei to license our 5G technology. The combined product will be 1-2 years behind the comparable Huawei products in terms of functionality and assurance,” says Andy Purdy, Huawei’s chief U.S. security officer.
Last year, the Trump government issued a trade ban on Huawei. U.S. tech companies were prevented from dealing with the Chinese company. Google complied, essentially shutting Huawei out from its services and damaging its chances in the smartphone market.
Microsoft has been far more supportive than Google. For example, Redmond has vocally voiced concerns about the government’s actions.
Microsoft President and chief lawyer Brad Smith said the treatment of Huawei by the U.S. government has been “un-American”. In the summer, Microsoft joined with gaming rivals Nintendo and Sony to protest Trump’s Chinese tariffs, including Huawei.