Displaying items by tag: Beijing

Chinese telecommunications behemoth Huawei is preparing to take the US government to court in an effort to the challenge the decision taken by the US congress which prohibits federal agencies from using its equipment.

The New York Times is reporting that the embattled Chinese vendor is now preparing to file a lawsuit against that legislation which was passed through the US House of Representatives.

Sources close to Huawei have leaked that the telecommunications company plans to argue the measure amounts to a so-called bill of attainder, which penalizes the vendor for a penalty without the benefit of a trial, which is illegal under the US Constitution.

The US has adopted a very aggressive approach towards Huawei and ZTE, and the latter was almost pushed the point of bankruptcy following draconian measures implemented by the US Department of Commerce.

In August of last year, President Donald Trump signed into law a defence spending bill which included a clause banning government agencies and contractors from using equipment from Huawei and fellow Chinese vendor ZTE.

At the time, Huawei labelled the bill ‘misguided and unconstitutional’ – and blasted the decision taken by the Trump administration.

The lawsuit by Huawei is expected to be filed on 7 March in a federal court in Texas, where Huawei has its US headquarters.

The move comes as Huawei battles assertions from the US that it poses a security threat to telecommunications networks. The US has lobbied other nations in banning Huawei from their 5G networks, such as Australia and New Zealand, and is also attempting to pressure European countries such as the UK and France.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said countries that use Huawei equipment risk losing the US as a business and trade partner over the alleged security threat.

However, during his keynote address on stage at MWC19 Barcelona last week, Huawei rotating chairman Guo Ping blasted the US campaign against the company saying officials have “no evidence, nothing” to back up their claims.

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The French government has announced that it will be instructing operators to allow them more oversight and control in relation to the rollout of 5G networks due to increased security concerns.

The decision by the French government comes on the back of speculation that a number of Western nations are considering banning Chinese telecommunications vendor Huawei from bidding on contracts for 5G deployment, amidst fears that Beijing would be able to gain access to sensitive communications and infrastructure.

Huawei should be the go-to vendor for operators globally, as it is well-ahead of its European rivals Nokia and Ericsson in relation to 5G equipment. However, Washington are lobbying its allies to prevent the Chinese telecommunications behemoth from being involved in their 5G networks as US intelligence agencies have deemed them a serious threat to domestic security.

Guillaume Poupard, head of France's national cybersecurity agency ANSSI, said a new law could be drafted in the forthcoming number of months in an effort to ‘toughen and extend’ authorization requirements in order to be sure we control the entire 5G network.

However, he insisted that approvals would not be refused "because of a company's image, or its country of origin".

Poupard told AFP, "There aren't good equipment makers on the one hand and bad equipment makers on the other -- unfortunately the situation is much more complex. The need for oversight is all the more critical since the base stations and other infrastructure for ultrafast 5G networks are much less centralized than current 4G systems.”

Huawei’s chairman Liang Hua told reporters at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, that it would pull out of partnerships in hostile countries.

Liang said, “We do not pose a threat to a future digital society. The United States has not yet put forward any evidence to justify its claim that Huawei’s equipment could serve as a Trojan horse for Beijing's security apparatus.”

Published in Telecom Operators

A state-run Chinese tabloid newspaper has written a strongly-worded editorial in which it has condemned the actions of Poland in the arrest of Huawei executive Wang Weijing in Warsaw.

Polish special agents arrested the executive for the Chinese telecommunications giant for alleged espionage after a lengthy investigation. Authorities claim that they believe he was spying for China.

Huawei moved swiftly in terms of responding to the latest controversy involving one of its employees by terminating the contract of Wang Weijing with immediate effect. However, the nationalist tabloid Global Times has been critical of the way Poland has handled the situation and has accused them of being an accomplice of the United States.

The newspaper wrote, “Beijing should resolutely negotiate with Warsaw and conduct relative counter-measures, helping the world understand that Poland is an accomplice of the US.”

The editorial added that if Huawei suffers further setbacks as a result of this arrest, which it more than likely will, then it will affect the confidence of Chinese society - and would represent an example to the rest of the world that it can bully Chinese enterprises. The paper has pleaded for China to remain strong and has called for Poland to suffer as a consequence of its actions.

The editorial said, “China must not be soft at this point. Beijing will not bully Warsaw -- and it is unworthy to do so -- but the latter must pay for the offense.”

The newspaper did not clarify as to what kind of measures China should take. China’s Foreign Ministry voiced its concerns about Wang's arrest in Poland, whilst as aforementioned above Huawei has sought to distance itself from the case as it fired the employee, saying his alleged actions have no relation to the company.

 A Polish man was also arrested for alleged espionage along with Wang on Tuesday.  Both men are suspected of having worked for Chinese services and to the detriment of Poland," according to Polish special services spokesman Stanislaw Zaryn.

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A Chinese drone maker has unveiled an unmanned warplane that can fly around for forty hours without needing to be refueled. ‘The Spy Hawk’ is invisible to radar and can scout ground targets from 9,800 ft according to its developers.

Footage released by Sea Hawke General Aviation Equipment Company Ltd shows the drone taking off from a runway in an unspecified location, and was widely shared across Chinese social media on New Year’s Day.

It is the first time the top-secret drone has been showcased to the public, as details surrounding the aircraft were previously shrouded in secrecy by the Beijing government.

A prototype was revealed briefly to spectators during the China International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition in Zhuhai last November, but until now information regarding the aircraft remained widely unknown.

The Spy Hawk has a wingspan of 18m (59ft), can carry up to 370KG and is capable of taking a clear picture of a car's number plate while flying at the altitude of 3,000 metres (9,800 feet). The warplane can penetrate key enemy targets in a “highly threatening battling environment” says its designers, and is constructed of “world first” technologies.

The plane's deputy designer Wang Jianping says the drone is also equipped with China’s most advanced photo-electric aerial platform and contains seven different cameras that can turn 360 degrees.

It was announced last February by Sea Hawke that the drone had completed its first flight a month before. 

It is the fourth UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) from the Chinese company after predecessor stealth drones ‘Star Shadow’, ‘Sharp Sword’ and ‘CH-805’.

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Chinese telecom provider loses major European contract

Written on Monday, 17 December 2018 06:28

The Chinese telecom company will cease to maintain mobile operator O2’s network in Germany – a subsidiary of Spain’s Telefonica – as of next year.

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Japanese government bans Huawei and ZTE products

Written on Monday, 10 December 2018 07:54

The Japanese government has announced that it will ban telecommunications equipment manufactured by Chinese vendors Huawei and ZTE amidst fears about cybersecurity.

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The CFO at Chinese telecommunications behemoth Huawei has been arrested and detained in Canada, in a move that has been met with vehement criticism amongst authorities in Beijing, who have called for her immediate release.

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Huawei denies collecting data from Facebook users

Written on Thursday, 07 June 2018 08:39

Chinese telecommunications vendor Huawei has vehemently denied that it collected data from Facebook users after the Silicon Valley social media colossus confirmed that it granted the Chinese smartphone manufacturer with access to user information.

Huawei has been deemed a threat to national security in the United States by a number of leading US intelligence officials and Republican congressman. The Chinese vendor has been subjected to intense scrutiny over the last few months, and this latest revelation by Facebook will only serve to heighten concerns over national security.

Facebook confirmed that Huawei along with several other companies was allowed to access Facebook data to get the world’s leading social network to perform on its smartphones. Following a fierce backlash in the US congress, Facebook mobile partnerships leader Francisco Varela has leapt to the defense of Huawei, saying that the information utilized by the Chinese vendor was stored on the device and not on Huawei’s servers.

Varela said, “Facebook along with many other US tech companies have worked with them and other Chinese manufacturers to integrate their services onto these phones. Given the interest from Congress, we wanted to make clear that all the information from these integrations with Huawei was stored on the device, not on Huawei's servers.”

A spokesperson for Huawei told AFP that it cooperated with Facebook as part of a concerted effort to improve user services, and strongly denied it collected or stored the data of users. In addition to this, it also rubbished claims it had any links to the Chinese government and dismissed fears in the US over national security.

The spokesperson said, “Like all leading smartphone providers, Huawei worked with Facebook to make Facebook's services more convenient for users. Huawei has never collected or stored any Facebook user data. Our infrastructure and computing products are used in 170 countries and we’ve worked hard to become a trusted ICT provider for our customers.”

US Senator Mark Warner, who is also vice-chairman of the senate select committee on intelligence, expressed his concern regarding the revelations by Facebook that Huawei had access to users’ data.

Warner said, “Concerns about Huawei aren't new. I look forward to learning more about how Facebook ensured that information about their users was not sent to Chinese servers."

Contracts with phone makers placed tight limits on what could be done with data, and "approved experiences" were reviewed by engineers and managers before being deployed - according to the social network.  Facebook said it does not know of any privacy abuse by phone makers who years ago were able to gain access to personal data on users and their friends. 

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A woman suffered burns to her face, neck and hands after the batteries in her headphones exploded on a flight from Beijing to Melbourne. The incident occurred just two hours into the flight. It has been reported that the passenger dozed off to sleep while listening to music on her own battery-operated headphones when the device caught fire. The passenger woke after hearing a loud explosion - she then felt a burning sensation on her neck and face. The incident only serves to highlight the dangers of using battery-operated devices in-flight.

The passenger, who was not identified - gave the following account to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, she said, “As I went to turn around I felt burning on my face. I just grabbed my face which caused the headphones to go around my neck. I continued to feel burning so I grabbed them off and threw them on the floor. They were sparking and had small amounts of fire.”

The fire was extinguished after flight attendants poured a bucket of water on the headphones, but already at that stage the battery and its cover had melted and was embedded into the floor. Pictures which emerged showed the passenger with a blackened face and neck. Fellow passengers had to endure an overwhelming smell of melted plastic, burnt electronics and singed hair for the duration of the flight.

The transport safety bureau, which did not identify which airline was involved, assessed that the lithium-ion batteries in the device likely caught fire. "As the range of products using batteries grows, the potential for in-flight issues increases," it said, adding that such devices needed to be stored safely if they were not being used.  Spare batteries should be kept in carry-on luggage, and not checked in, the bureau said.

Stuart Godley, of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, said it was the first official report of headphones catching fire in Australia - but added that there had been a series of incidents in relation to phone and battery incidents onboard flights. Twelve months ago, a flight that was due to leave for Sydney was evacuated when smoke bellowed from a passenger's hand luggage. It later emerged that lithium batteries stored inside the case had caused fire.

Also last year, an electronic device began belching smoke then caught fire on a Qantas flight from Los Angeles to New York, with a crew member needing to use a fire extinguisher to put it out, the ATSB reported. In another Qantas incident in 2016, attendants were alerted to smoke on a flight from Sydney to Dallas. They found a crushed and burnt out device wedged tightly in the seat. "We've also had a case of a person using personal air purifier and the batteries in that have caught on fire on a flight," Godley told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

Published in Gadget

Chinese electronics manufacturer Xiaomi have finally ended months of speculation by officially announcing its intentions to launch in Pakistan with analysts suggesting that this move represents the firm’s ambition to restart its global expansion.

The Chinese gadget manufacturer has expanded at a pedestrian since its 2011 debut in China. Xiaomi, which is headquartered in Beijing – focused initially on Southeast Asia, India and parts of the Middle East and Brazil – and its proposed entry into Pakistan is the company’s largest since that move to South America in 2015.

The declaration from Xiaomi finally ends months of official denials from the firm – Pakistan is the world’s sixth most populous country in the world, and represents a potentially lucrative market for the Chinese smartphone maker.

Like its introduction to Brazil, Xiaomi will enter Pakistan through a distribution partnership – with Rocket Internet’s e-commerce marketplace Daraz which is present in locations such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Sri Lanka.

Jack Yung, Sales director for Xiaomi, in South Asia, disclosed that three models will be introduced to the market on an initial basis – coupled with plans to make its budget Redmi Note 4 and Redmi 4A also available.

Chinese smartphones have had a presence in Pakistan for a number of years - brands such as Huawei and Oppo have enjoyed success in the region. Part of their marketing strategy was to use celebrities and sporting personalities to push their products, while also embarking on extensive billboard advertising and primetime spots on national television.

Analysts feel Xiaomi could find it difficult to penetrate the market in Pakistan, its introduction will be met with a wave of publicity and fanfare – but with its insistence on selling exclusively online it may find it hard to carve out a space for itself. In Pakistan, most shopping is done offline; some estimates of the e-commerce sector vary between US$40 million and US$50 million. So, unless Xiaomi decides to change tact and place its phones and gadgets in retail outlets, then it may face challenges.

Pakistan is adding one million 3G/4G connections every month, and smartphone imports increased by a whopping 124% in the first quarter of 2015, according to data provided by the IDC. However, still large parts of the country’s vast population remains off line, so there is a large demand for cheap, sturdy, 3G phones in the marketplace.

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