Huawei’s first 5G phone goes on sale in China as it pushes ahead with launch despite US pressure

  • Huawei’s Mate 20 X 5G smartphone went on sale on Friday.
  • It’s capable of connecting to the next-generation 5G mobile networks which will begin rolling out in China later this year.
  • Huawei is pushing ahead with its product releases despite continued pressure from the U.S., which is reportedly considering whether to extend a special license for American companies to sell to the Chinese firm.

Huawei’s first 5G-capable smartphone went on sale in China over the weekend as the technology giant pushes ahead with new products despite pressure from the U.S.

5G refers to the next generation of mobile networks that promise super-fast data speeds and the ability to underpin technologies like driverless cars.

Huawei’s Mate 20 X 5G — which costs 6,199 yuan ($880) — went on sale in China on Friday, and will be able to connect to those new networks.

China hasn’t rolled out its 5G networks yet but they are expected to come online later this year in major cities and throughout the rest of the country in 2020.

Huawei wants to get ahead of its competition: Apple has yet to release a 5G phone, and Samsung’s Galaxy Note 10+ 5G is not on sale in China yet.

The Chinese tech giant has upped its focus on its home market as it faces pressure from the U.S. The telecoms equipment maker is on a U.S. blacklist known as the Entity List, which restricts American firms from selling products to Huawei. The company was given a 90 day reprieve in which some of the restrictions were relaxed, but that ends on Monday.

According to Reuters and the Wall Street Journal, the U.S. government is looking to extend the license which would allow American firms to continue doing business with Huawei.

“China is now even more important, with the U.S. making it difficult for the company to sell its offerings outside China due to sanctions,” Neil Shah, research director at Counterpoint Research, told CNBC…

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