Chinese tech giant Huawei is involved in many controversies, including allegations of corporate espionage, fraud, attempted theft of a T-Mobile robot, and violation of sanctions against Iran . It is also the producer of good consumer products as an almost flawless MacBook Air clone and one of the most technologically advanced smartphones on the market. It is becoming increasingly difficult to talk about one without the other. So let's talk about it.
Firstly, it's the awful pallet around the company. Earlier this week, the US Department of Justice announced charges against Huawei. In Seattle, a grand jury returned a charge of 10 federal crimes related to Huawei employees attempting to steal secrets from the T-Mobile phone operator. This includes the company that instructs employees to break with non-disclosure agreements, preventing equity fees, and even attempting to steal physical components from a robot. T-Mobile uses to test the phone's durability.
At the same time, in New York, a grand jury returned a charge of 13 separate crimes, claiming that Huawei and the Iranian affiliate Skycom committed fraud and money laundering in an attempt to circumvent US sanctions against Iran.
Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou, daughter of CEO Ren Zhengfei, is at the heart of many of these charges, with DOJ claiming she made false statements about Huawei's interaction with Iranian businesses. Meng was arrested by the Canadian government at the end of 2018, and her arrest has caused considerable tension between China, Canada and the United States
Earlier this week, the Canadian ambassador to China was fired to comment on Meng's release. In December, two separate Canadian businessmen were arrested in China, and one-third were returned and sentenced to death (he is appealing). Canada has issued a travel advisory claim that there is a risk of "arbitrary enforcement of local laws."
American companies are also now tired of sending high-level execs to China. Asked if they would consider traveling to China, a partner at a large New York law firm told CNBC "By mail? Are you fucking kidding me? No fucking way." Shaun Rein from China Market Research Group told the Sydney Morning Herald, " If I were a high-level expert on Google or Cisco, I would not visit China anytime soon. "Bill Bishop, author of the Sinocism newsletter, said:" If I were an American technician, I would delay traveling to China for a bit. "
It's a four-storm of bad publicity for the company, but it's not the first time Huawei has suffered from the international community. Huawei was founded in 1987 by Ren Zhengfei, a former officer (specifically vice president of engineering) in People's Liberation Army. His military connections have contributed significantly to the rumors and accusations of the company's alleged wrongdoing.
"Not only is Huawei financially and politically supported by the Chinese government, but also its origins as a military-backed company continue to pay dividends, including a contract to maintain the Chinese military's telecom backbone", a piece of question raised in a question on Eastern Ecological Review published back in December 2000.
The standing theory is that Zhengfei is still respected by military leaders, who throw the company good contracts and lean on the non-military side of the government to provide Huawei contracts as well. "It also receives state aid in the form of tax credits and state-sponsored credit because it has been designated as" national master "of new technology," noted an unclassified Canadian security information service report in 2003.
This has allegedly given Huawei leeway to make some deals as otherwise would be bad advice. In 2001 (and 2000), Huawei violated UN sanctions and developed networks for Iraq, including missile defense. At the same time, India accused Huawei of creating a customized Taliban communications network in Afghanistan. Huawei refused. As it currently nectarizes a misdemeanor related to the countless charges imposed by the United States
"I love my country, I support the Communist Party. But I don't want to do anything to hurt the world," says CEO Ren in a Round Table earlier this month.
But it can't be up to him. "Because of the nature of the political system in China, you are naturally connected with the government, and the government can put a lot of pressure on a company in China to enter data and spy on other countries, "Lynette Ong said. Ong is a professor of political science at the University of Toronto and specializes in Chinese politics and political economics.
As far as Ong is concerned, Ren's ties to the PLA are not meaningful." has not come across any hard evidence. There is a lot to write, but it is almost speculative. "For her, the concern is that the company is only based in China, and as such it is subject to the same pressure as any other Chinese company, including others we regularly cover, such as others Xiaomi and Alibaba." How do you actually prove that you are independent by your parents? "
So far, Huawei has struggled to prove independence, and it has seriously hampered its business, especially in the United States. While we have heard of great Huawei phones for five years now, they have not been sold by anyone US Mobile Operators Why? Because of a 2012 Congress Report that effectively banned it from selling telecommunications equipment in the United States, and according to The Wall Street Journal, telephone operators discouraged creating formal partnerships.
And now? interesting that the United States renewed its interest in limiting Huawei's business almost immediately after the company surpassed an American company, Apple, as the second largest seller of phones in verde n. Furthermore, at a time when distribution of equipment to new 5G networks is on the rise. Huawei is positioned to supply much of the equipment needed to develop 5G telecommunications networks abroad – its equipment is already banned in the US, including for Deutsche Telekom's (which owns T-Mobile) and Softbank (which owns Sprint) ).  "The US definitely looks up and comes to competition, and it rolls out all the strategies that are possible to prevent the growth of its competitors," Ong said. Carolina Milanesi, a consumer technology analyst with Creative Strategies, posted this notion. "There is no doubt that the Huawei extra control has been under as late as it has to do with the political environment between China and the US, as well as the high rates around AI and 5G," she wrote in an email to Gizmodo.
In an effort to secure its merger, T-Mobile and Sprint promised not to use Huawei's technology. And as Engadget notes, the latest thrill of espionage rumors has led countries, including the United States, New Zealand and Australia, to prohibit Huawei equipment from being used to network. Telecoms in the UK, France and Japan have also expressed reluctance to use Huawei equipment, referring to security issues.
This is an important part of Huawei's business, and its legal problems in the United States, as well as charges of espionage, stand to cost it billions in lost business. "I think it's a real threat – something that can actually require the company, at least in the Western market," said Ong. "It makes it very difficult for Huawei and other obviously Chinese brands to succeed in the US consumer market," Milanesi said.
While the company has been stymied by the US government for a while, methods have been found to bypass it by targeting consumers and technical journalists who wowing us with well-designed products that are often much cheaper than what we could get from a company with less stench around it. It is tempting to distinguish the poor behavior from the objectively good products.
We do this all the time with American companies. Amazon's CEO is the richest man in the world – so rich, his wealth seems immoral. The company regularly conducts professional disruption, struggles with privacy issues, and touches almost every aspect of our online life in a way that feels frighteningly invasive. It also makes many pretty good and extremely cheap things. And who doesn't love all the benefits of Amazon Prime? Amazon's goods and services are so good we have asked if we are evil to buy from the company.
Google doesn't feel much better sometimes. It was the time Google tried to help the Pentagon building drones (venture was killed after working hours). And at that time it almost helped the Pentagon with a massive cloud computing project (it also dropped out of it). Google is also, you know, looking at all our features, thanks to a mix of Google Search, Maps, Android and other services. Still, we still love Chrome books and Pixel 3.
There is a link between these companies, their often hideous actions and the products they produce. I want to tell people to buy the Huawei MateBook Pro X because it's a fantastic machine, complete with a camera that is tucked away behind a button so it can't see you without permission. But then I think of what would happen if Huawei is driven out of the United States. How do you want your laptop computer serviced? Is it worth the risk of losing support down the line? Huawei's Mate 20 Pro is an amazing smartphone. But do you want to buy a phone from a company accused of espionage?
I'm still not sure. The technique can be exceptional, but the luggage seems very heavy.