Back in May this year, the U.S. Department of Commerce tightened the trade restrictions placed on Huawei by banning the use of American technologies on chips which are produced for Huawei.
This effectively means that TSMC is no longer able to manufacture chips developed by Huawei’s HiSilicon under the new ban, which will kick in on September 15th.
As for chip makers who intend to supply chips to Huawei, they will need to apply for special licenses with the U.S. Department of Commerce – and Taiwan’s chip-maker MediaTek is among the first to have applied for such licenses.
In a statement released to Reuters, MediaTek said that the company “reiterates its respect for following relevant orders and rules on global trade, and has already applied for permission with the US side in accordance with the rules.”.
Needless to say, the outcome of this application will be significant to Huawei given that MediaTek now supplies a large-scale of 5G chips to Huawei and Honor’s mid-ranger smartphones.
For instance, the more recent Huawei Enjoy 20 series smartphones, as well as Honor X10 Max and Honor 30 Youth Edition were all based on MediaTek’s Dimensity series SoCs.
Therefore, if the application was rejected, it will certainly be detrimental to Huawei’s smartphone business.