In 2017, it was reported numerous times that Huawei would sell a flagship device through AT&T, a first for the China-based OEM. However, sometime before CES, AT&T backed out of the deal, with The Information citing political pressure from US lawmakers that view Huawei as a security threat.
It is now being reported that the US government wants AT&T to cut all commercial ties with Huawei, including any work the two have made on the development of 5G standards.
Reported by Reuters, “One of the commercial ties senators and House members want AT&T to cut is its collaboration with Huawei over standards for the high-speed next generation 5G network. Another is the use of Huawei handsets by AT&T’s discount subsidiary Cricket.”
Should AT&T, as well as any other US firms not heed this request, “It could hamper their ability to do business with the US government.”
Not wanting AT&T to sell Huawei’s phone is one thing, but possibly hampering 5G development is another. I realize the importance for national security, and the US govt. doesn’t want China tracking US citizens, but Huawei phones are currently available on basically all major carriers outside of the US (45 of the world’s top 50 carriers, to be exact) and there doesn’t seem to be a major issue with that.
Looking at it from a consumer standpoint, it sucks.