Huawei’s recent release of the Mate 60 smartphone has sparked both excitement and concern within the tech industry. Despite a lack of traditional advertising or advance notice, the phone has been met with great acclaim due to its high specifications and unique features, such as satellite call capabilities and super-high speeds. While Huawei has remained tight-lipped about the technical details of the device, users have confirmed that it is indeed 5G enabled.
However, the biggest question surrounding the Mate 60 is the source of its chipsets. With the United States imposing sweeping sanctions on China’s access to foreign-made chip technology, many wonder how Huawei was able to develop such advanced chipsets for their latest smartphone. One theory suggests that China’s domestic Semiconductor International Manufacturing Corp (SMIC) provided the technology. Although SMIC has refused to comment on the matter, a Bloomberg teardown analysis supports this theory.
Reports from Chinese benchmarking website AnTuTu also indicate that the Mate 60’s central processing unit (CPU) could be the domestically-produced Kirin 9000. This would mark a significant breakthrough for China’s semiconductor industry and a major win for Huawei’s chip smartphone business. A previous report from Nikkei Asia further supports this claim, stating that SMIC would be producing a seven-nanometer chip for Huawei – a notable advancement given American sanctions aimed at restricting China’s chip industry to 14nm levels.
Another possibility is that Huawei developed the chip with its own supply chain network. Bloomberg’s report suggests that the telecom firm has been quietly building an independent supply chain network to bypass U.S. export controls. By recruiting existing foundries, Huawei may have successfully achieved independence from foreign chip technology, effectively overcoming U.S. sanctions.
Interestingly, the Mate 60 was released during a visit to China by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. This timing adds a symbolic blow to the U.S., which has been attempting to curb China’s global competitiveness in sensitive industries. China’s Global Times newspaper captured the sentiment of Chinese netizens, who feel empowered and defiant under U.S. pressure.
Lastly, there is a possibility that the new phone utilizes existing inventory from before the U.S.-imposed restrictions, such as chips manufactured by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) before September 2020. Reports suggest that Huawei had been stockpiling chips prior to the implementation of restrictions and may now be repackaging them with certain modifications. However, this explanation is considered the least likely.
Regardless of the origin of the chipsets, the release of the Mate 60 has caused concern among Washington insiders. The Washington Post recently published an article titled “Mate 60 Sparks Worry China Has Found a Way Around US Tech Limits,” which highlights American experts’ fear that China remains competitive in delivering quality 5G-enabled products. This further underscores the impact of Huawei’s success and its ability to adapt to adversity.
Huawei’s ability to release the Mate 60 under the challenging circumstances it faces is a testament to its resilience and ingenuity. From developing its own operating system (HarmonyOS) after being banned from working with American companies like Google, to overcoming chip technology restrictions, the company has consistently demonstrated its ability to adapt and thrive. The Mate 60’s success should be celebrated as a remarkable achievement in the face of unprecedented hurdles.
In conclusion, the release of Huawei’s Mate 60 smartphone with its advanced features and specifications has raised questions regarding the source of its chipsets. Whether developed domestically or obtained through alternative supply chain networks, the phone’s success represents a significant victory for China’s telecom industry. This leaves Washington insiders concerned about China’s ability to continue competing in the global tech market despite U.S. efforts to stifle its progress. Huawei’s resilience and adaptability throughout its journey deserve recognition and admiration.