×

Huawei Restricted From Using Google’s Android as U.S.-China Tensions Mount

Google has prevented controversial Chinese tech firm Huawei from accessing the latest versions of the Android mobile phone operating system. The move follows U.S. government attempts to blacklist the Chinese firm.

“We are complying with the order and reviewing the implications,” Google sources told news agencies Sunday. “Huawei will only be able to use the public version of Android and will not be able to get access to proprietary apps and services from Google.”

Cutting off access to Android may damage Huawei’s multinational cell phone business. It is one of the world’s three largest phone makers and has an especially large proportion of its activity in developing countries.

It is unclear which other Google apps may be affected. The digital giant said that “the security protections from Google Play Protect will continue to function on existing Huawei devices.”

The Trump administration has been at loggerheads with Huawei for months. It worries about the availability and security of Huawei’s 5G network technology and has accused the company of potentially enabling the Chinese government to use the equipment for spying.

The government has also sought the extradition of Sabrina Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s CFO, who was arrested in Canada. That move has dragged Ottawa into a three-way diplomatic tussle involving Beijing and Washington.

On Thursday, the U.S. put Huawei on a trade blacklist. That would have made it difficult for Huawei to operate with any U.S. company, including Google and chip makers. But on Friday it appeared to modify the restrictions and “prevent the interruption of existing network operations and equipment.”

It was also reported Sunday that Western content was being blocked on the Internet within China. On Monday morning local time, China’s Tencent Video suspended the availability of the season finale of HBO’s “Game of Thrones” TV blockbuster.

“Dear users, we regret to inform you that the sixth episode of the eighth season of ‘Game of Thrones’ will not go online at the intended time due to media transfer issues. We will keep you informed of the broadcast time,” Tencent Video said in a social media posting.

In recent hours, Chinese sources have told Variety that streaming operations in China are back to normal. It is not clear whether the Huawei-Google and the online video incidents are connected, though some users were quick to point to the growing political tensions between the U.S. and China as a possible cause.

The two superpowers are engaged in a trade war that has seen both side impose tariffs on goods from the other. A resolution had been expected earlier this month, but it failed to emerge and instead a further round of tariff increases was announced by both.

To date, the entertainment industry has largely been spared the worst of the trade dispute, though Chinese state-owned newspaper The Global Times last week suggested action against American cultural products.

More Biz

  • Discovery Corporate New Logo

    Discovery Faces Backlash From Unscripted Producers After Shift in Series Payment Process

    Discovery Inc. is facing a backlash from the unscripted production community following a shift in the cable giant’s protocol for paying for programming. During the past year, Discovery has implemented a new system that calls for the company to pay producers for shows after all episodes and related material for a given season have been [...]

  • Wendy Goldstein Named Republic Records President,

    Republic Records Names Wendy Goldstein President of West Coast Creative

    Republic Records advances Wendy Goldstein to President of West Coast Creative, label co-founders and chief executives Monte and Avery Lipman announced today. Goldstein has overseen the company’s Santa Monica office since 2017 as EVP of Republic Records. Over the past year, she headed up the label’s efforts for Ariana Grande’s  back-to-back No. 1 debuts for the singer’s “Sweetener” and “Thank U, Next” albums, and [...]

  • The Traitor

    MMC Studios, One of Germany's Biggest Production Facilities, Changes Hands

    Germany’s MMC Studios, which has hosted such recent international productions as Joseph Gordon-Levitt thriller “7500” and Marco Bellocchio’s Cannes competition film “The Traitor,” is changing hands. Frankfurt-based investment company Novum Capital has acquired the facility in Cologne, one of Germany’s biggest film and TV studios, from Luxembourg private equity fund Lenbach Equity Opportunities I. The [...]

  • Hayley Kiyoko Signs Global Publishing Deal

    Hayley Kiyoko Signs Global Publishing Deal With Kobalt

    Singer-songwriter-actor Hayley Kiyoko, seen most recently in a cameo in Taylor Swift’s “You Need to Calm Down” video, has signed an exclusive worldwide publishing agreement with Kobalt, the company announced today. The partnership includes publishing administration, creative services and synch for all of her catalogue and future works. Jamie Kinelski, VP, Creative, Kobalt said, “Hayley [...]

  • billy porter gay pride todd snyder

    How Hollywood Is Celebrating Pride Month

    Pride Month officially wraps up this weekend with the WorldPride Parade in New York. It takes on special significance this year, as attendees mark the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising. A number of artists and brands are also getting involved, launching “Pride-themed” collaborations and merchandise in an effort to boost their own visibility within [...]

  • Shawn Strickland, Tony DiSanto - Allyance

    Tony DiSanto's Allyance Media Taps Verizon Veteran Shawn Strickland as President (EXCLUSIVE)

    Shawn Strickland, a veteran of Verizon and Complex Media, has joined Tony DiSanto’s Allyance Media Group as president. In the role, Strickland is heading up business operations and spearheading partnerships for the multiformat media and production company. DiSanto and financier Matthew Bruderman formed Allyance Media Group last year. The New York-based company encompasses DIGA Studios, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content