Laptops made by Huawei were removed from the online Microsoft Store on May 21st, 2019, and they’re back. Now the lot has returned to the online store as if they’d never left, without explanation on the part of Microsoft or Huawei proper. The disappearing and return of these machines is quite likely due to the recent mess Huawei’s found itself in here in the United States gadget market.
Returned from oblivion are the Huawei Matebook X Pro, the Huawei MateBook D Laptop, and the Huawei MateBook 13 53010FKR, laptops all. Strangely, the manufacturer “Huawei” still does not appear on the side of the “Shop all PCs” page on the Microsoft store online, though all other manufacturers (with devices in the store) do seem to have their own spot.
Huawei’s situation in the United States now has its roots in a series of unfortunate events that truly did seem to paint Huawei in a bad light. Almost as if they weren’t exactly what they suggested – and most certainly weren’t entirely innocent bystanders in a trade war between China and the USA.
The government’s banning and market-blacklisting actions toward Huawei seem aimed at the destruction and/or stoppering of Huawei before they… do something bad on the part of China. Or the Chinese government – or something to that effect. Maybe the US Government is just gunning for that number one spot.
UPDATE: Microsoft sent a comment to the press, saying they were evaluating how to respond to the addition of Huawei to the United States government’s addition of Huawei to the Department of Commerce’s Export Administration Regulations Entity List. Microsoft continued, saying “as a result, we are resuming the sale of existing inventory of Huawei devices at Microsoft Store.”
UPDATE 2 for further clarity on the above: The Export Administration Regulations (EAR) Entity List was originally created in February of 1997 as part of efforts to “inform the public of entities who have engaged in activities that could result in an increased risk of the diversion of exported, reexported and transferred (in-country) items to weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs.” The program since expanded grounds for inclusion on this list to “activities sanctioned by the State Department and activities contrary to U.S. national security and/or foreign policy interests.”
The EAR Entity List contains businesses (amongst other entities) that cannot export, reexport and/or transfer (in-country) specified items without a specific license. Important to this situation: The list does not specify Huawei devices, themselves, but Huawei the company. As such, the folks at Microsoft (in Microsoft Store) are free to sell whatever stock remains of the Huawei hardware they’ve got left.
Huawei had a similar series of events unfold at the Wi-Fi alliance, Bluetooth alliance, and SD card alliance in the last week of May. They were removed from the rosters of all three groups, then re-added later in the week. It was similarly hush-hush as the Microsoft situation above.
Perhaps most shocking of the events that’ve occurred over the last several weeks was the Huawei announcement earlier today. There, they showed that Huawei founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei expects 2019 revenue to drop by $30 billion since the company last made a financial report and estimation. That’s down from approximately $130 billion as previously estimated.