Huawei moves closer to 5G handset launch after gaining safety accreditation

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Shoppers visit a Huawei service center in Shanghai on March 22, 2019. (Image credit: TechNode/Cassidy McDonald)

Huawei is among the first batch of smartphone makers to receive official safety accreditation for upcoming 5G-capable handsets, along with OnePlus, ZTE, and Vivo, reported National Business Daily.

Why it matters: Securing the permits means the companies are a step closer to launching their respective next-generation smartphones, a widely anticipated catalyst as sales decline in markets across the globe.

  • The firms still need to apply to authorities for licenses to access the country’s commercial 5G network, which is touted to launch in October.
  • Huawei announced last month it had already received its Network Access License for the Mate 20 X model from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

Details: Seven 5G handsets have received China Compulsory Certifications, a safety accreditation for products sold on the domestic market, from the China Quality Certification Center.

  • Four of the smartphones are from Huawei, while OnePlus, ZTE and Vivo have one each.
  • An insider at Oppo said the firm had also secured the certification, while Xiaomi said it would apply next week, National Business Daily reported.

Context: The race to deliver smartphones compatible with 5G networks has begun as companies eye fresh opportunities in a saturated market.

  • On June 6, authorities granted licenses for the commercial use of 5G to the country’s big three carriers—China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom—as well as the state-owned China Broadcasting Network Corp.
  • The Chinese smartphone market continued to cool this year with sales down 12% quarter on quarter in the first three months, according to research firm Counterpoint.
  • A report by research firm Canalys said global shipments of 5G-enabled handsets would hit nearly 800 million in 2023, and more than one-third of sales will come from Greater China, which includes mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.