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If you own a Huawei handset, this is what you need to know

Google has announced that it is halting some services for smartphones made by Huawei Technologies Company.

For now, current Huawei smartphones holders with Google apps, will still be able to use and download app updates provided by Google.

But future versions of Huawei smartphones that run on Android will lose access to popular services including the Google Play Store, Gmail and YouTube apps.

The same Google apps and services will not be available on future Huawei smartphones, which will affect all smartphones built for the China market and across the globe.

Huawei can still use the Android mobile operating system, which is available via an open-source licence.

This open-source version – Android Open Source Project (AOSP) – can be used and modified by anyone. Huawei, though, will lose early access to future versions of Android, potentially delaying new Android updates.

ANDROID SOFTWARE

The biggest blow for anyone who owns Huawei smartphone will be the lack of Google apps and services, which will discourage most users outside China from buying their gadgets.

This will likely dash Huawei’s hopes of overtaking South Korea’s Samsung as the top smartphone maker this year.

Existing Huawei smartphones, like the recent Huawei P30 Pro, which were launched recently in Kenya, will continue to have access to Google apps and services, as well as security updates.

But Huawei may not be able to update the Android software to the next version promptly, if at all.

Since most Android smartphone makers, such as Samsung, take months to update the Android software with the latest features, consumers may not be overly concerned about this.

Google is merely complying with the trade blacklist, on which Huawei and 68 of its subsidiaries were placed last week.

The ban was enacted when Huawei was placed on a so-called Entity List, which bars the company from purchasing equipment from US companies without prior government approval, something the Commerce Department is unlikely to give in the near future.