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Asia

Huawei’s New Laptop Becomes First Casualty of U.S. Sanctions

Huawei has indefinitely postponed the announcement of a new laptop computer that was originally scheduled for this week, as the U.S. government’s trade sanctions have blocked the Chinese tech giant’s access to Microsoft’s Windows operating system and Intel’s processors, Huawei employees with knowledge of the matter told The Information. 

Huawei had previously planned to unveil the new Windows laptop at the CES Asia 2019 trade show in Shanghai. The company hasn’t set any new date for the product’s launch, the employees said. 

It’s one of the first changes in Huawei’s product launch plans since the U.S. sanctions last month blocked the company’s access to American technology. So far, Huawei hasn’t cancelled smartphone release plans, and the company’s founder Ren Zhengfei has said in media interviews that Huawei is well-prepared thanks to its years-long efforts to develop its own technologies.

But in reality some parts of Huawei’s operations, such as its MateBook line of laptops, have been severely affected by the U.S. sanctions. Earlier this week, Taiwan’s DigiTimes reported that Huawei had asked its laptop supply chain partners to suspend deliveries. 

Huawei’s consumer electronics business, which last year generated nearly half of its revenue of $107 billion, consists mostly of smartphones, and laptops account for a fraction. Still, Huawei was expecting the PC business to turn profitable this year on continued growth of its Matebook line, which has received good reviews since its 2017 debut. 

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