Microsoft 'kicks Huawei out' of Windows Phone 8 global launch

Microsoft 'kicks Huawei out' of Windows Phone 8 global launch

Summary: Under pressure from the U.S. government, Huawei will miss the Windows Phone 8 launch today. Facing setbacks, Chinese smartphones makers could turn to developing their own mobile operation systems.


Amid the intensifying disputes over whether Huawei threatens U.S. national security, the Chinese telecom equipment and cellphone maker will miss the Windows Phone 8 global launch in San Francisco later today.

As one of Microsoft's four Windows Phone 8 device manufacturers -- the other three being Nokia, Samsung, and HTC -- Huawei's forced absence was linked to the pressure from the U.S. government, at least to the company's vice president Yu Chengdong.

Microsoft had claimed that it made the decision out of different marketing strategies.

"We are one of the four [Windows Phone 8] makers and yet [we] could not attend the global launch," Yu wrote on his Weibo, the Chinese version of Twitter. "I hope this inapprehensible situation brings no surprise in the midst of political and business struggles between China and the U.S."

The U.S. House Intelligence Committee recently released a report stating that Huawei's lack of operation transparency hindered its investigation, and its alleged links to the Chinese Liberation Army threatened the U.S. national security.

In a hope to boost the company's image, Huawei invited CBS News 60 Minutes to its headquarters in Shenzhen, China during the summer to interview Bill Plummer, the firm's U.S. spokesperson, while Huawei's mysterious chief executive Ren Zhengfei continued to fly under the radar and avoided all Western media coverage.

In face of serial setbacks, Huawei and counterpart ZTE, are developing their own operating systems to rival Android, iOS and Windows Phone platforms. According to Huawei's consumer products Wan Biao, the operation system research and development is underway; ZTE also plans to launch its own operating system in China during the fourth quarter, said vice executive president He Shiyou in a talk with a local website.

Image credit: Brian Bennett/CNET.

Topics: China, Government US, Microsoft, Mobile OS, Smartphones, Windows

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • Do something succesful in China

    And that'll make like 50% of the global market...
    • no it wont

      China has 1.2b and will be overtaken by india in next 5-6 years and currently has 1.1b people...

      The whole planet has 7 billion people and the EU has 500 million.
      • And

        India would takeover the crown # of mobile phone subscribers shortly.
        Ram U
        • "Huawei and counterpart ZTE, are developing their own OS"

          Thanks to morons in D.C. now MSFT, GOOG, AAPL will have to be screwed in future in the big China market. Just another example of Govt intervention bringing unintended consequences that someone else has to pay for them.
          • no actually

            it's the plutocratic morons in the PRC who will try to force their citizens to use approved phones as part of a futile attempt to keep the proles from talking about how Premier Wen's 90 yo pensioner mom wound up with $120m in her bank account just in the past five years. The backlash cometh.
          • So easy to criticize what we don't understand

            Surface knowledge leads to vapid criticism, time and time again.
      • Ironically...

        Half of China's population accounts for just under 10% world-wide marketshare. While I don't disagree with you, danjames2012, his point is still a valid one. You attract about half of China and India, you're at 1/5 the population of the world. I would imagine a less expensive product in China would be at least at a price point that the India market could afford in mass numbers.

        By comparison, the US has about 60% the population of the entire EU. If I'm trying to seek worldwide domination, I want success in China, India, and the US. Of course, that is hard since the three are quite different economies.
        • china

          Has only just overtaken USA in smartphone sales.

          We are not including feature phone.
    • Define "global."

      If by "global" you mean "we got numbers just because we're a single high population country."

      Not really all that impressive, since they get the numbers basically by default.

      Certainly doesn't mean it'll be popular in the EU or US.
  • I hope

    I sure hope the U.S. government has good evidence to back up these fears, because this is the sort of thing that could spark a trade war. That said, the extent of PRC government's silence on these issues suggests there may be more than a gran of truth to these worries.
    • There already is a war of sorts

      From NASDAQ

      China's Yuan is in a "controlled peg" relative to a basket of currencies. They control the exchange rate of their currency by purchasing the currencies of other countries, including the US Dollar, and many argue that the Chinese are buying a disproportional amount of dollars in order to keep their currency at a rate lower than it would be in a free market. This would allow them to produce (and sell) products cheaper as exports.
      • Re: that the Chinese are buying a disproportional amount of dollars

        What else are you supposed to do when the US Government is deliberately keeping the USD low? The rational thing to do is buy them when they're cheap, right?
    • think about it

      You actually think NSA findings are going to be broadcast?

      Huawei and ZTE OS's? More fun with FX and Greg at the next Defcon. Their vidcasts are sufficiently convincing.
  • No way Huawei!

    Huawei is nowhere near a "normal" company and does NOT deserve normal market access.

    They've broken all the rules you can imagine and whine about politics interfering with their growth. Finally the world is waking up and saying "No!".

    NO to corruption, NO to IP theft, NO to worker and supplier exploitation, NO to their secretive, harsh, racist corporate culture!
    beau parisi
    • Exactly!

      Huawei may be a "private company" but its run like the PLA (ruthless authoratarian: "My way or the Huawei") and supported by the CCP: financially ($30B line of credit), commercially (govt and SOE contracts that non-Chinese companies are blocked from bidding on) and politically (PRC govt pressure on other govts to do deals with Huawei in return for loans and other favors).
  • Say what?

    "I hope this inapprehensible situation brings no surprise in the midst of political and business struggles between China and the U.S." - Huawei VP Yu Chengdong

    That's how Huawei really sees it: a political and business struggle. They've been at it for more than 10yrs, except it hasn't just been against the US (draining their former business partner Motorola of its valuable IP, blatantly stealing Cisco's etc) but also against Canada (corporate espionage bringing Nortel to its knees, though it's hapless leadership did the rest), France (Alcatel-Lucent, ask any of their guys), Africa (many examples, look at recent corruption case in Ghana), India etc...

    Their image building campaigns aren't going to fix the underlying governance issue. It's window dressing to hire non-Chinese ex-politico spokesmen since these guys are not operational and kept out of the top decision making circle.

    Little 'ol HTC is far more legitimate and trustworthy than Huawei. They're international top management team have built an honest business and have earned their market access. Let's hope they can survive and thrive, giving Chinese and the rest of the world a worthy success story.
  • umm..

    This make no sense at all
  • Microsoft Can Ill Afford To Just Throw Away OEMs

    A platform that is teetering on the brink of complete disaster should accepting all the helping hands it can get, not slapping them away.