Huawei to stop production of Kirin chips by US sanctions | Business

THE Huawei can no longer offer the Google ecosystem on its current smartphones, but that hasn’t stopped it from launching them. So far: the sanctions imposed by the United States will force the company to stop producing the chips Kirin in September, a situation that may directly affect the production of the brand’s mobile phones.

Huawei Kirin 990 5G

Sanctions imposed by the U.S. government since 2019 prevent Huawei from closing deals with U.S. companies. That’s why lines like Huawei P40 don’t have Play Store and other Google services.

As the Google ecosystem is not very popular in China – Huawei’s main market – this restriction is not much of a problem.

Only the siege of the American government has been increasing. In May of this year, the restrictions forced TSMC to stop producing Kirin processors for Huawei. Although TSMC is headquartered in Taiwan, the company follows the rules of the United States Department of Commerce for using American technology in chip making.

Processors ordered before May 15 may be shipped to the Chinese company by September 14. As of September 15, Huawei will no longer have suppliers. “This may be the year of the latest generation of high-end Huawei Kirin chips,” said Richard Yu, president of the company’s consumer division.

It is a dramatic situation. Kirin chips have specific features for the artificial intelligence functions of Huawei’s most advanced smartphones, which is why replacing them with processors from other manufacturers is a complicated task – not to say impossible. That is why the company itself signals that the Mate 40 line will be the last to come with Kirin chips.

If it chooses third-party chips, Huawei will likely have to target them to new smartphone models. But that is the least of the problems. The biggest is to find a supplier.

An alternative could be Samsung, but the Korean brand allocates almost all the production of Exynos chips to its own mobile devices, not to mention that it also uses American technology in its production lines.

Huawei P30 Pro

Another option would be to hire Chinese SMIC to produce Kirin chips on a large scale. The problem is that the company does not have the production capacity for the volume of processors that Huawei needs, nor the technology to manufacture the most advanced models: while TSMC is at 7 and 5 nanometers, SMIC is still at 14 nanometers.

It leaves MediaTek, which already supplies chips to Huawei. The problem is that there is nothing indicating a great partnership between the two, not least because there are a number of issues that need to be analyzed for this. For example: could the company supply chips equivalent to the most advanced Kirin models?

Exit may be at Qualcomm

It is possible that Huawei’s stocks will guarantee the production of the brand’s high-end smartphones in 2020. After that, the exit may be at Qualcomm, Amazingly. The company is headquartered in the United States and, according Wall Street Journal, would be pressuring the Trump administration to authorize the supply of 5G chips to Huawei.

People close to the discussions say Qualcomm’s chips would equip Huawei’s 5G phones under the argument of preventing this market, which is estimated to cost $ 8 billion a year, from being predominantly in the hands of foreign companies.

With information: Associated Press.

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