Huawei's Consumers May Face Setback due to AT&T Deal Breakdown


Back in December, Huawei consumer products chief Richard Yu had been quoted saying his company would partner with one or more USA carriers to launch the Mate 10 in the market, with an announcement to come at the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) taking place this week in Las Vegas. Samsung Electronics can not help trying to turn the tide by appealing to the court on the home ground of Huawei in China and concentrating on trials in the USA and elsewhere. Their reason, US lawmakers expressed concerned about potential ties between Huawei and the Chinese government.

Huawei is the world's third largest smartphone vendor by volume after Samsung Electronics (005930.KS) and Apple Inc (AAPL.O), but it has a mere 0.5 percent share of the USA smartphone market, compared with 39 percent for Apple and 18 percent for Samsung, according to industry tracker Canalys. A second deal is also looking shaky.

According to The New York Times, the deal collapsed after a group of USA lawmakers voiced concerns about a potential deal between Huawei and an American firm to sell products in the states in a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). 45 of the world's 50 biggest wireless carriers are customers of Huawei, according to ot the Wall Street Journal. Huawei was expecting that the AT&T partnership would open the ways to set it's strong position in the U.S market. Verizon is according to sources of Android Police under political pressure to not launch the Mate 10 later this year.

AT&T and Verizon have not commented, but Huawei said it would be launching the Mate 10 Pro in the USA without carrier partners.

Meanwhile, The Information claimed to have obtained a copy of a letter that was written by the U.S. Senate and House intelligence committees and was sent to the Federal Communications Commission dated December 20, 2017.

Among the deals killed recently by the multi-agency Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) were Ant Financial's plan to buy U.S. money transfer company MoneyGram International Inc (MGI.O), the purchase by China-backed Canyon Bridge Capital Partners LLC of a U.S. chip maker and plans by Zhongwang USA, backed by a Chinese aluminum tycoon, to buy a U.S. aluminum maker.

Huawei might still decide to cancel its Super Bowl commercial as things have not been worked out as planned for the launch of the Huawei Mate 10 Pro. "It's a big loss for us, and also for carriers, but the more big loss is for consumers because consumers don't have the best choice".

"Everybody knows that in the United States market that over 90 percent of smartphones are sold by carrier channels", said the CEO.

In a speech given by the CEO of Huawei's consumer products division, Richard Yu, during the CES 2018, the executive went "off-script" to address the issue.