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Huawei Will Start Using Qualcomm Chips Again But There are Doubts

Qualcomm has confirmed that the US chip company is now in possession of a special permit from the American authorities, thanks to which the Chinese smartphone manufacturer Huawei can be supplied with processors again. But there is one big catch.

As Qualcomm explained to Reuters when asked, it actually received a license from the US Department of Commerce. Qualcomm is therefore exceptionally allowed to deliver certain products to Huawei again. This also includes some products for 4G mobile communications i.e. use in LTE networks.

It is still unclear what Qualcomm can deliver

A spokesman for the company did not give precise details about which chips Qualcomm can now supply to Huawei again. So far, however, no deliveries have been allowed at all because the US government put Huawei on a kind of “blacklist” some time ago, which forbids US companies to work with the Chinese group.

The recently granted exception license for Qualcomm is expressly limited to a number of specific products and explicitly does not cover a wide range of chips. Qualcomm has therefore made a number of other applications for a special permit in order to clear the delivery of other products.

It is noteworthy that Qualcomm is still expressly not allowed to deliver 5G-capable chips to Huawei. This basically means that all current Qualcomm SoCs in the mid-range and the high-end chips from the Snapdragon series are no longer available. Basically, Huawei can only get older chips from Qualcomm, so it is questionable whether the SoCs can really be used in new devices.

Before the entry into force and the recent tightening of the sanctions against Huawei, Qualcomm was only a secondary supplier to the Chinese anyway. Because Huawei mostly used its own chips in its smartphones until recently, Qualcomm processors were only used in a few, mostly simple models.