Last week, Chinese tech giant Huawei posted its annual revenue results, and things are not looking good. Compared to last year, the revenue for 2021 had fallen by 29%, with the main culprit being the US sanctions that have obliterated Huawei smartphone sales all across the world.
Huawei has been effectively banned from using US intellectual property in its devices, resulting in a now years-long struggle to find components and new software solutions for its smartphones. The official reasoning behind the ban that Trump and its administration issued is that Huawei is a threat to the national security of the USA.
Huawei’s revenue in 2021 sums up to 634 billion yuan ($99.5 billion), which is down by nearly one-third compared to last year.
“In 2021, despite all the trials and tribulations, we worked hard to create tangible value for our customers and local communities,” said Huawei rotating chairman Guo PingGuo in an official statement. “We enhanced the quality and efficiency of our operations, and expect to round off the year with a total revenue of 634 billion yuan.”
Guo also said that the smartphone segment took the biggest hit, with the telecom carrier segment remaining stable, and “overall performance was in line with our forecasts.” Huawei officially sold its subsidiary brand Honor earlier this year in a bid to circumvent the US trade ban, although there are no official ties between the two companies now, and Honor designs and devices should be considered completely original and separate from Huawei.
Due to Huawei not being a publicly-traded company, there are no further financial details. The company will most likely continue to push forward its Android-based Harmony operating system and focus its efforts on 5G and other telecom services. Smartphone sales would probably remain strong in China, while the other part of the world would have to rely on Honor devices to get a taste of “what would’ve been” and some Huawei-inspired smartphone designs.
Currently, more than 200 million Huawei devices are running HarmonyOS, which is still pretty insignificant, compared to the 1 billion Apple phones that are operational. Despite the hurdles, Huawei remains one of the world’s biggest suppliers of telecoms network gear. Huawei smartphones are pretty much dead outside China, though. Here’s how it all happened.
Huawei US ban timeline
October 16, 2021: US politicians ask Biden to blacklist former Huawei subsidiary HonorSeptember 5, 2021: Huawei escapes U.S. chip ban by buying 4G Snapdragon chips instead of 5G
August 7, 2021: 14 House Republicans want Honor to face the same U.S. bans as Huawei does
November 16, 2020: Huawei sells off the Honor subsidiary.
June 30, 2020: The FCC designates Huawei and ZTE national security threats.
May 14, 2020: Trump extends the trade ban on Huawei for another year.
March 31, 2020: Huawei reports the smallest profit increase in three years.
February 11, 2020: Huawei’s backdoor access to mobile networks was reportedly unearthed by the US.
October 28, 2019: The Federal Communications Commission warns wireless carriers using Huawei and ZTE equipment.
August 9, 2019: Huawei unveils Harmony OS.
May 19, 2019: Google cuts off future Android updates from Huawei phones.
May 15, 2019: President Trump bans Huawei with a national security order.
April 21, 2019: The CIA issues a statement saying that Huawei is funded by Chinese state security.
January 29, 2019: The US imposes 23 indictments on Huawei for trade secret theft and fraud.
December 6, 2018: Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou is arrested in Canada.
May 2, 2018: The Pentagon bans Huawei and ZTE phones in US military bases.
March 22, 2018: Huawei phones disappear from Best Buy.
February 13, 2018: FBI Director Chris Wray issues a warning against buying Huawei phones.
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