China wanted Huawei protections in EU trade deal

Finbarr Bermingham at SCMP got a copy of the draft EU-China trade agreement that included

China reserves the right not to open this service to investors from countries that block or arbitrarily discriminate against Chinese telecommunications enterprises in law or policy.

Ultimately, the clause apparently was struck, although the final text has not been released.

The deal, agreed on Dec 31, allowed European companies to own 50% of cloud data centers in China. Angela Merkel was the lead proponent for the mega-billion trade deal, backed by Emmanuel Macron. Trump and Pompeo strongly opposed the deal.

China buys $200 billion from Europe every year. EU investment in China is $120 billion. Mercedes sells twice as many cars in China than in Germany.

In the long run, that gives China enormous bargaining power.

Huawei first in 3GPP security testing

Under pressure, Huawei has invested $tens of billions in security. It only makes sense that it is tking the lead in conventional security testing. 3GPP, the industry’s standards body, confirms Huawei is the first to pass GPP’s Security Assurance Specifications (SCAS) testing in both LTE and 5G.

While an important symbol, it’s very hard to extrapolate from testing to truly effective security, No one is certain what threats will arise in the 5G era, It’s highly likely many new issues will be discovered for which there is no test plan, 5G will involve many more components, many of them cheap IoT devices. Many experts are fearfulof the enlarged “Attack Surface.”

Nor does testing like this tell us much about the real issue, penetration by a nation-state. The Russians have recently cracked slews of US government systems. The hacking group Cozy Bear penetrated, among others, the US Department of (Nuclear) Energy. Separately, Microsoft was deeply breached.

The real evidence on security is deeply classified and often distorted for political purposes. Neither I nor anyone not a part of the security apparatus can provide real answers.

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Ren: Huawei Will Build Parts, not Cars

China is producing 25 million cars this year and Huawei intends to be at the heart of all of them, a $50 billion market. It’s also a primary supplier to Daimler and Audi in Germany.

Thousands of engineers are working in the Intelligent Car Solution business unit, which was upgraded to the same position as phones in the Consumer Business Group under Yu Chengdong.

So many are working on automotive, some in China believed Huawei would build a car. Ren has now strongly denied that:

Huawei does not build cars, but we focus on ICT technology to help automakers build good cars. In the past two years, despite the constant changes in the external environment, we must be clear that building ICT infrastructure is the historical mission of Huawei. The more difficult it is, the more it cannot be shaken. Therefore, the company once again reiterated: Huawei does not build complete vehicles, but focuses on ICT technology to help auto companies build good cars, build good cars, and become an incremental component provider for intelligent connected cars.uawei does not build cars, but we focus on ICT technology to help automakers build good cars. In the past two years, despite the constant changes in the external environment, we must be clear that building ICT infrastructure is the historical mission of Huawei. The more difficult it is, the more it cannot be shaken. Therefore, the company once again reiterated: Huawei does not build complete vehicles, but focuses on ICT technology to help auto companies build good cars, build good cars, and become an incremental component provider for intelligent connected cars.

Complete text below

The MDC 600, introduced in 2018, offered chips, platform, operating system, and a development framework for an autonomous car. It’s since become clear that fully autonomous cars are not coming that soon. Caixin reports the 2020 MDCs have a more modest goal:

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The Pain of Letting Honor Go

Many of the 6,000 Honor/Glory employees cried at the announcement. Ren made a remarkable speech.

“Don’t feel bad about Huawei, think about your future! In the future, we are competitors. …It is not certain who wins or loses? We will not be polite to you. Some of you seek to defeat Huawei in the competition. They are heroes. Don’t reject them.” 

QQ News reports

“Let’s see you dear mother, please kiss your son goodbye, see you mother, don’t be sad, don’t be sad, wish us a safe journey…”

With the singing, many Huawei and Honor executives burst into tears. At 4 pm on November 25th, the honorable farewell party at Huawei’s Bantian headquarters in Shenzhen was dignified. At the opening, all participants sang “Chinese Men”, “Unity is Strength” and “Song of Communist Youth League Members.”

A Huawei employee who participated in the farewell party told “Deep Net”, “Huawei will sing “Chinese Man” for induction training and important meetings. This time, “The Song of the Communist Youth League Member” should be sung by President Ren. Participants sent emails asking everyone to prepare in advance.”

Honor is already buying chips that Huawei couldn’t and prepare to introduce half a dozen new phones.

U.S. Offering Deal to Meng; Case always was b______

WSJ says the US is willing to essentially abandon the massive international case through a “deferred prosecution agreement” that would contain no real penalty. The US spent $millions trying to prove Meng committed serious bank fraud. It was obviously political; the bank was not ripped off, even if the Huawei work in Iran was minimized.

From the WSJ:

[Meng’s lawyers] have spoken to Justice Department officials in recent weeks about the possibility of reaching a “deferred prosecution agreement.” … Ms. Meng would be required to admit to some of the allegations against her but prosecutors would agree to potentially defer and later drop the charges if she cooperated.
Ms. Meng has so far resisted the proposed deal, believing whe did nothing wrong.

If the U.S. could prosecute Meng for doing business with Iran, the chief executives of Nokia and Samsung would need to live in fear. Samsung is the #1 seller of mobile phones in Iran. I reported more than a year ago that Nokia was also active in Iran. They confirmed it.

Ren to Honor: Farewell my children

“American politicians are not trying to correct us, but to kill us.” Ren is speaking like a father forced to sell a child. “We will not drag innocent people into the water because of our own suffering. However, agents and distributors in 170 countries will dry up due to lack of water in the channels, which will cause millions of people to lose their jobs.”

“Embrace globalization unswervingly,” he recommends. “You must carefully decentralize powers in a game of chess around the world. A reasonable elimination mechanism is a supplement to activating the positive motivation of the entire team. It is necessary to respect people, evaluate science, and adhere to the responsibility and result orientation.”

His amazing advice:

“Don’t feel bad about Huawei, think about your future! In the future, we are competitors. …It is not certain who wins or loses? We will not be polite to you. Some of you seek to defeat Huawei in the competition. They are heroes. Don’t reject them.” (Edited Google translation)

I compare that to AT&T’s Randall Stephenson after he fired tens of thousands. On Wall Street, he bragged about how much less he gave the ex-employees than Verizon had.

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Huawei’s Wang Tao introduces 5.5G (First in English)

5.5G proposal

The ITU 6G is mostly more than a decade away and hasn’t considered practicalities. Meanwhile, the networks can be improved in major ways. Ericsson & Huawei are testing cell-free Massive MIMO, a form of network or distributed Massive MIMO that the academics see as the next big advance.

Wang Tao has provided a framework for thinking about what’s needed. He proposes

  • UCBC, to focus on the construction of uplink capabilities, which will be important for industrial IoT
  • RTBC, focusing on the construction of broadband real-time interaction capabilities
  • HCS scenarios, focusing on the construction of capabilities that integrate communication and perception. It would coordinate vehicle and road information

I’ve no idea on whether the telcos will support the extensive network upgrades these functions will require.

Huawei will bring these ideas to 3GPP shortly.

Wang Tao comments are based on reporting by Sina Technology.

Ericsson claims breakthrough with mmWave 5 Gbps. Huawei did 20 Gbps in 2017

I – and thousands of others – saw a live, 48 hour Huawei demonstration of 20 Gbps in 2017 at a Tokyo event. That was the standard set by ITU’s Focus Group 2020 for what is usually called 5G. That goal was set in 2010 based on what the engineers were able to demonstrate in the lab.

“Verizon, Ericsson and Qualcomm first in the world to achieve 5G peak speed of 5.06 Gbps” is a misleading headline. It’s what I call a politician’s truth. (Below or https://www.verizon.com/about/news/verizon-ericsson-qualcomm-5g-peak-speed.)

Although the performance is not new, the lab demo had some interesting features. It combined 800 MHz of 28 GHz spectrum with 2 bands of 20 MHz running LTE using PDCP aggregation. 5G is often slower than 4G, including on 99% of Verizon’s network, because 2, 3, and 4 bands are easily combined in LTE.

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5G first in China’s investments

Four ministries issued September “Guiding Opinions on Expanding Investment in Strategic Emerging Industries and Cultivating Strengthened New Growth Points and Growth Poles.” As you can see below, 5G was the top recommendation.

The National Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, and the Ministry of Finance came together to suggest priorities for the 14th Five-Year Plan.

No surprise here. The Chinese press has been overwhelmed for months with the economic stimulus that will be provided by 5G. Western commentators often make the same claim, based on Qualcomm claims of a $13 trillion boost. This is of course nonsense, but everyone in telecom is happy to see the support.

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Year+ parts inventory, ?$20 billion

Huawei has been chartering planes to bring chips to China. They’ve ordered so much most plants, including TSMC & the Koreans, have been at capacity for months. Memory chip prices are stubbornly high because of the added demand. MediaTek, NeoPhotonics, and many more are having record quarters.

The Mate 40 with Huawei’s 5 nm chip is about to be announced. The rumor is 10M are being produced with parts on hand. It’s the first 5 nm chip to the market, soon matched by the Apple A14.

Ren has committed to $20 billion in R & D. Huawei cut back in India and Australia for political reasons, but is increasing hiring in Russia and China.

Huawei will survive and thrive, I said last year before the unprecedented (and probably illegal) US blockade on chips. The US sanctions are costing Japan, Taiwan, and Korea ~$26 billion/year, per Nikkei. The long run cost to America is an order of magnitude greater.

Companies around the world are actively designing out US components because of the uncertainty of future American demands. That’s particularly true in Germany, I believe, where the US is sanctioning people because of the Germany-Russia Nord Stream pipeline.

Wars are very expensive. Economist Gardner Ackley told a US President, “You want your effing war, you raise your effing taxes.”

Someone always has to pay.

First U.S. layoffs due to Huawei blockade

NeoPhotonics has lost $40M in quarterly sales to Huawei, a brutal blow to a company with quarterly sales of ~$100 million. They promise “appropriate expense adjustments and structural actions to mitigate the impact of revenue declines.” That almost definitely means they will fire a lot of people.

NeoPhotonics makes some of the best optical components in the world, important for 400 gigabit transmission. Huawei makes most of its own optical parts and will probably soon develop an alternative.

I suspect Huawei’s purchases were especially high as they stock up to withstand the U.S. blockade.

Here’s the official announcement

NeoPhotonics preps for life without Huawei

SAN JOSE, Calif. – NeoPhotonics Corporation, a leading developer of silicon photonics and advanced hybrid photonic integrated circuit-based lasers, modules and subsystems for bandwidth-intensive, high speed communications networks, today provided a business update following the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) updated actions on August 17, 2020.

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Huawei’s cloud expanding worldwide

Huawei has some of the fastest server and AI chips in the world.

The chips power a cloud IAAS system that #3 in China and the fastest growing in the world. As you can see from the map at left, Huawei is expanding across the Southern hemisphere, including Johannesburg. Instead of fighting in the larger markets, it is seeking out markets not as well served.

Germany isn’t on this map but actually has a very large Huawei cloud system. It belongs to Deutsche Telekom, but is primarily built by Huawei. DT has been aggressively promoting its European cloud, including in an alliance endorsed by Merkel and Macron.

The Financial Times reports that Huawei’s cloud is growing, especially in the government and state-owned enterprise market. FT believes that Intel has a license to continue shipping processors to Huawei dating to before August 17th that is not affected by the blockade. I am not able to confirm that.

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