Google is restricting future business with Huawei, cutting off access to its Android operating system and its popular apps, after the Trump administration escalated a crackdown on the Chinese tech firm.

Google’s suspension, first reported by Reuters, amounts to a major blow to the world’s largest telecommunications equipment maker, which will no longer receive access and support for Google’s proprietary apps like Gmail, YouTube and Chrome.

The open source version of Android will still be available to Huawei, according to the report, but the Chinese tech giant will immediately lose access to updates to the operating system. And though existing Huawei users can still download popular Google apps through the Google Play store, they won’t be available on future Huawei handsets.

People who already own Huawei phones will not see a sudden disappearance of their services.

“We are complying with the order and reviewing the implications,” Google said in a statement Monday. “For users of our services, Google Play and the security protections from Google Play Protect will continue to function on existing Huawei devices.”

Google’s suspension is the latest blow against Huawei. Last week, the U.S. government added Huawei to its “Entity List,” forcing the company to obtain a U.S. government license to buy American technology. Known to some as the “death penalty,” the designation makes it virtually impossible for firms to survive once U.S. businesses cut off their dealings.

The penalty was seen as a dramatic escalation of the economic clash between the Trump administration and China.

The Commerce Department said it had initiated the crackdown because Huawei “is engaged in activities that are contrary to U.S. national security or foreign policy interest.” The Department of Justice has also accused it of violating Iran sanctions.

The listing will have an immediate affect on the telecommunications company, which has significant backing from the Chinese government. Huawei said last week that it spends more than $1 out of every $7 of its annual $70 billion procurement budget buying equipment from U.S. companies. The ban could also hinder Huawei’s ability to produce its latest equipment since the company relies on U.S. suppliers for components including wireless chips, antennas and handset operating software.

In a statement Monday, Huawei said it has made “substantial contributions” to Android’s global ecosystem; 2.5 billion devices around the world run on Android. The company said it will continue to provide security updates and after-sales services to owners of its smartphones and tablets.

According to data released before the U.S. government listing, Huawei claimed 19 percent of the global smartphone market, the research firm IDC said, behind only Samsung’s 23.1 percent, which was on the decline.


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