Huawei suffered a major blow earlier this year from a US ban and the effects are still being felt. Today, a report has revealed that one product that was killed as a result of the ban was a Google Assistant speaker that Huawei was planning to launch later this year.
claims that Huawei and Google were working together on an Assistant-powered smart speaker. This wouldn’t be the first smart speaker from Huawei. However, it would have been the first with Google Assistant and with sales outside of China. Apparently, the device was even going to be sold in the US in some capacity.
A Huawei spokesperson declined to comment on the report, and Google didn’t respond on the matter either. An anonymous Huawei employee, though, mentioned that Huawei had “worked with Google on this project for a year” with much progress made during that time. Due to the US ban, though, work on the project “suddenly stopped.”
The original plan was for this speaker to arrive at IFA 2019, but unless the move to put Huawei on the US Entity List is reversed, it seems unlikely this speaker will ever see the light of day. Beyond that, the widespread privacy concerns that this entire debacle has put in the public eye probably wouldn’t encourage many prospective buyers to bring a Huawei device loaded with microphones into their home.
Before the U.S. president’s action, which was in response to national security concerns, Huawei’s plan was to unveil the new speaker at the IFA tech trade show in Berlin this September, the people said. The speaker, powered by Google Assistant, was aimed at markets outside China, and Huawei was hoping to sell it online in the U.S.