Huawei and ZTE handed 5G network ban in Australia

Chinese smartphone maker Huawei says the Australian government has banned it from providing 5G technology for the country’s wireless networks.

It said fellow communications firm ZTE had also been banned, both reportedly because of national security concerns.

“This is a extremely disappointing result for consumers,” the company said on Twitter.

Faster data download and upload speeds are promised with 5G, which is the next stage of mobile internet connectivity.

Wider coverage and more stable connections than current 4G technology are also highlighted as benefits.

What’s the issue?

Several countries are preparing for the roll-out of 5G mobile networks, although analysts say few will launch 5G services before 2020.

Mark Newman, from the consultancy ConnectivityX, said: “5G is going to be the next significant wave of mobile infrastructure deployment.

“If existing suppliers are banned, it will be quite a major blow for them.”

Huawei is the world’s biggest producer of telecoms equipment. It also ranks second in global smartphone sales, behind Samsung and ahead of Apple.

In July, a UK security committee warned that it had “only limited assurance” that Huawei’s telecoms kit posed no threat to national security.

The UK’s cyber-defence watchdog – the National Cyber Security Centre – has also warned that the use of ZTE’s equipment and services could pose a national security risk.

 

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