Technology companies have ordered their employees not to discuss technical details with their Chinese counterparts, following Trump blacklisting the Chinese firm. Intel, Qualcomm, InterDigital Wireless and LG have limited their employees’ freedom to carry informal chats with Huawei employees. International meetings whereupon engineers across the globe gather to discuss 5G standards regularly see such technical discussions taking place.
US Commerce Department stated that it hadn’t ordered a communications blackout. Instead, it had only blacklisted the Chinese firms and allowed its companies to hold communications only as far as required for 5G tech development, stated the authorities. However, many firms have ordered employees to follow this order as they wish to avoid potential conflicts with the government in the future. Intel & Qualcomm provided their measures, but haven’t commented about it so far.
InterDigital and LG spokespersons stated that they were interacting with Huawei’s team only as far as required and no more. This is in accordance with current regulations. Expected to enable autonomous cars and high speed data transmission, 5G rollouts could be slowed down due to this measure.
At a meeting held last week, one speaker expressed concerns over global 5G standards, which require utmost cooperation for global agreements, being subject to the US-China trade war. A European company’s representative stated that he was shaken after the trade war’s effects on the 5G industry. The global market was being threatened. Smaller companies continued business as usual, due to the lack of formal orders. However, it remains to be seen how far the block is for.
Doug Jacobson, who is a lawyer, stated that Washington’s directives were being misunderstood by many of his colleagues and clients. He stated that the communication ban was excessive since only technology transfers were included in the ban.
Given Huawei’s top dog status in manufacturing phones, routers, and many necessary communication equipment, a deal with Huawei wouldn’t be valid practically. Since US directives are misinterpreted, everyone is playing it safe. The IEEE had banned Huawei engineers due to this confusion, until it received clearance from the Commerce Department.
People aren’t even sure if a 5G network without China is viable.