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Google's temporary license to work with Huawei has expired, which may be bad news for the OEM's older phones

The P30 Pro's days as a normal Android device may be numbered. (Source: Huawei)
The P30 Pro's days as a normal Android device may be numbered. (Source: Huawei)
Google applied for a temporary general license (TGL) in order to keep older Huawei devices compatible with its Android app ecosystem even after this OEM was placed on the US administration's Entity List in May 2019. However, this TGL has now expired, leaving the future function of many phones worldwide in some doubt.

The US government consigned Huawei to its Entity List on May 16, 2019. This, in essence, meant that its Android phones were to lose access to important software update such as new security patches. However, in practice, this only affected devices released to the market on or after the date in question, as Google secured a TGL that enabled it to send material, these patches included, to devices that had been available beforehand.

This license expired, on August 13, 2020, however, and the Mountain View giant has exhibited no signs of getting it renewed. Therefore, this may expose older, heretofore fully-functional Huawei mobile devices to risks such as failing SafetyNet attestations or Play Protect certifications (which are often required to keep payment and banking services operational or to run "core" Android apps such YouTube) in the near future.

Google had earlier confirmed that Huawei phones "made available to the public after May 16, 2019" would show up as 'uncertified' on their Play Store apps. Now, this may also apply to their counterparts released before this date as well. On the other hand, some correspondents believe this is a worst-case scenario, and that the 2 companies may yet be able to spare the devices this fate.

In any case, Huawei has had a contingency in the works known as HarmonyOS. This is an in-house 'alternative' to Android that is increasingly common on the OEM's devices as standard, and may be rolled out to many others as time goes on.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 08 > Google's temporary license to work with Huawei has expired, which may be bad news for the OEM's older phones
Deirdre O'Donnell, 2020-08-16 (Update: 2020-08-16)
Deirdre O'Donnell
I became a professional writer and editor shortly after graduation. My degrees are in biomedical sciences; however, they led to some experience in the biotech area, which convinced me of its potential to revolutionize our health, environment and lives in general. This developed into an all-consuming interest in more aspects of tech over time: I can never write enough on the latest electronics, gadgets and innovations. My other interests include imaging, astronomy, and streaming all the things. Oh, and coffee.