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Podcast: Huawei's Guilty of Something, Right?

Phil Harvey

Years of intellectual property theft allegations against Huawei and the imbroglio over alleged violation of US sanctions send a signal to competitors and some partners: Be very careful before trusting these guys.

But is Huawei a willing or, perhaps, unwitting actor in actively undermining US national security? The US government thinks so, but they've done very little to convince the world that that grifting and lying to get a competitive edge amounts to the same thing as working on behalf of China's government to destabilize or destroy the US.

Light Reading's Mitch Wagner joins the podcast to say that the government's rhetoric around Huawei as a national security threat sure would sound more reassuring if they actually presented proof.

Huawei's dominance in 5G around the world is central to the US campaign to demonize the vendor. Related to that, Mitch and I discuss the big 5G letdown. Is 5G going to give us everything we were promised? Perhaps, but not on the timeline you'd expect if you pay attention to the TV commercials pushing 5G during every major sporting event and cop drama.

The Light Reading podcast is available on Google Play, Apple Podcasts, Spotify and SoundCloud.

Related posts:

Phil Harvey, US Bureau Chief, Light Reading

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5/30/2019 | 4:54:00 PM
All is fair in love and trade wars?
Hi Phil / Mitch,

Enjoyed the podcast.

Good to challenge whether USA/Trump is simply retaliating against a country that is doing better. Agree that many governments engage in spying.

In terms of Huawei having difficulty doing business in America, well it is not so easy for American networking companies to do business in China.

China is a significant military threat to America, hence the argument for being sensitive about critical infrastructure. I respect Mitch's call for incriminating information to be released. Governments can be reluctant to release information demonstrating what they know. That said, I understand Mitch's point.

In terms of the attempt to hurt Huawei's position in 5G, perhaps there is not a dominant American 5G radio supplier that would benefit, but maybe the broader networking ecosystem would. In addition, America is not the only country with security concerns. That said, there is a trade negotiation going on, hard to know what issues Trump will stick with, and which issues are negotiating tactics. Also, government strategists likely see connection between economic dominance and military dominance.

WRT stock market, there has been some impact, and the points made in the podcast were good. According to some financial analysts, there would have been more impact, except the "market" is assuming that a trade deal will eventually be struck. If that starts to look unlikely, there may be more impact on the stock market.

If there is not a trade deal struck, and current policies stay in place, there may be economic negatives for American business and consumers. OTOH, there is a great deal at stake in the China trade deal negotiations. We will see if this is just bluster or it produces something. China is not likely to roll over easily.

"China Inc" has been behaving in an aggressive way for some time, advantaging Chinese business. Whether that should prejudice Huawei is a matter of opinion, but to be clear, Huawei has definitely benefited, around the world, and telecom is not the only industry in which China Inc plays. That does not take away from any of Huawei's other achievements and advantages.

More thoughts at:


Mark Seery


bohcay LLC
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