Despite eased sanctions in the pipeline that will likely allow Huawei to buy integral components from US companies, it’s still not 100% rosy for the Chinese company. According to reports in The Wall Street Journal, Huawei is planning job cuts for hundreds of staff in the United States at its Futurewei Technologies research center (via The Verge).
Huawei relies heavily on US research to help develop some of its key hardware, and even with trade reprieves expected as part of a US-China trade deal, job cuts have been deemed ‘required’. The company has reportedly already informed a number of staff that they will be released, with more cuts still to come in the near future.
Some Chinese staff have been offered the ability to relocate to China and remain with Huawei but this will not apply to all Futurewei Technologies employees. It’s unclear just how many jobs are at risk.
This news comes as another report from Let’sGoDigital shared details about Huawei’s trademark applications for “Harmony” via the EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) in the UK. This hints that the rumored Huawei-developed OS still has legs (via Android Authority). This is a bigger deal when you consider that the trademark is related to “mobile operating systems; computer operating systems; downloaded operating system programs.”
It’s unknown if resources and staff are being redirected from the US-based research programs back to China to help develop this internal OS faster. Given that the Android Q-based EMUI 10 is set to launch next month, a launch of a fully Huawei-developed OS still seems at odds with the push to get EMUI 10 out of the door.
Any Huawei-made OS might simply be used for other projects and products, as we still expect trade bans to be fully lifted in the event that a US-China trade deal is signed. It will be interesting to see how these potential US job cuts will affect the development of upcoming Huawei features too.
More on Huawei:
- Huawei’s EMUI 10.0 could launch as early as next month
- US Commerce Department: Huawei is still blacklisted as part of Entity List
- Huawei still waiting to hear if it can continue using Android and Google services