After AT&T recently decided not to sell the Huawei Mate 10 Pro, Verizon has reportedly scrapped plans to carry the latest Huawei flagship as well.
Based on a new report, Verizon will not be selling the new Huawei Mate 10 Pro flagship, nor other 5G-capable smartphones from Chinese companies, amid mounting political pressure.
Verizon Huawei Mate 10 Pro Not Happening
According to a new report from Bloomberg, citing sources familiar with the matter, Verizon was facing pressure from the U.S. government and it ultimately caved, canceling all plans for the Mate 10 Pro. Verizon will likely not be selling any other 5G-capable smartphones Huawei might launch in the future.
That said, Huawei smartphones will still work on both AT&T and Verizon, provided they are compatible with each network's requirements (GSM/ CDMA), but the two operators will not be directly offering the devices. This might limit the reach of Huawei smartphones in the United States, as some customers prefer getting devices from carriers and pay for them in installment plans or take advantage of various promotions.
U.S. Concerns About Huawei
Earlier speculation claimed that U.S. lawmakers were worried about the potential ties Huawei might have with the Chinese government. A rumored letter to the Federal Communications Commission reportedly noted concerns about China's espionage schemes and Huawei's potential role in the matter.
The latest report from Bloomberg now also mentions 5G, at a time when Huawei is striving to be the first to launch a 5G-capable smartphone. At the same time, the U.S. government reportedly wants to control a nationwide 5G network to protect against China, as 5G will likely fuel everything from mobile devices to artificial intelligence, self-driving cars, and more.
5G Phones May Pose Security Risk
"U.S. security agencies and some lawmakers fear that 5G phones made by companies that may have close ties to the Chinese government could pose a security risk," Bloomberg reports.
As Huawei is facing suspicions of having ties with the Chinese government, the Mate 10 Pro with 5G capabilities apparently qualifies as a Chinese device under investigation because it might pose security threats.
While both AT&T and Verizon have previously sold various Huawei devices, the government is worried about 5G capabilities. Those devices previously sold on U.S. carriers did not support 5G, but the Mate 10 Pro will. The government is reportedly concerned that a smartphone with Chinese 5G networking equipment could enable the Chinese government to gain access to U.S. network activity.
Various U.S. retailers such as Best Buy, however, are still expected to sell the 5G-capable Huawei Mate 10 Pro in the United States.