Huawei expects to return to the 5G smartphone industry by the end of the year, in a quest to recover from setbacks after the US barred its access to advanced equipment. Huawei is expected to secure 5G chips domestically by leveraging advancements in semiconductor design tools and collaborating with SMIC, according to Reuters, citing three independent technology research firms specializing in China’s smartphone sector. These firms, citing sources including Huawei suppliers, suggest the company may utilize SMIC’s N+1 manufacturing process, despite it being projected to yield less than 50% usable chips. Currently, Huawei’s electronic design automation (EDA) software could be combined with SMIC’s N+1 manufacturing process to produce chips comparable to 7 nm semiconductors commonly used in 5G phones, these firms added. However, the low yield rate indicates that 5G chips are expected to be expensive. Doug Fuller, a semiconductor researcher at Copenhagen Business School, said “I guess if Huawei wants to eat the cost they can do this, but I don’t see such chips as price competitive.” [Reuters]