The news are shocking for a lot of budget smartphone owners: Google will discontinue trade deals with Huawei, a result of the escalating trade spat between China and the USA. While this sounds kind of political there are actual real-life consequences for everyone who has a gadget of said brand at home: There will be no further updates for Huawei devices such as smartphones and tablets. This will have a serious impact on the user experience and the security of users’ data.
Upcoming Huawei devices without Google access?
Google has confirmed that currently available Huawei devices can still be used and that services such as the Google Play Store, Google Search, Gmail, Google Maps, and the Chrome browser will continue to work. But, there may also be limitations on devices released in the future.
For Huawei users’ questions regarding our steps to comply w/ the recent US government actions: We assure you while we are complying with all US gov’t requirements, services like Google Play & security from Google Play Protect will keep functioning on your existing Huawei device.
— Android (@Android) May 20, 2019
“It is important to keep a device updated with the most recent operating system and patches as these updates are often designed to close new loopholes hackers have managed to exploit such as bugs, vulnerabilities, and zero-days. It’s much more than just giving you the latest graphics or a few more emojis, the real value of these updates is in their potential to protect your device more effectively,” said Director Protection Labs & QA, Alexander Vukcevic.
No PlayStore = security risk
“In the medium term, when and if users can’t access the Google Play store, they will try to download their most used apps from other sources. This will open up new possibilities for hackers. We are expecting an increase in fake apps that will lead to more serious security threats for Huawei users,” he added.
In addition to this, apps downloaded by the Google Play store have been checked by Google for potentially malicious content or abuse of user’s data. “While some bad stuff has gotten through, the Google Play store is much, much cleaner than off-market sources,” he explained.
What should Huawei users do now?
- Don’t panic. Make sure that you have switched on automatic updates of the operating system to secure your device. All currently available Huawei phones (like the latest P30 and P30 Pro or Mate 20 Pro) will still have access to all Google services.
- Keep reading. If you just bought or plan on buying a Huawei device, follow the latest news developments in this issue. Keep taps on what or how Huawei will provide you with security updates on this device.
- Get covered. Use an Anti-Virus software on your Android smartphone or tablet – there are also free ones. One of them is Avira Free Security for Android which will ensure that the apps you are using are safe and don’t threaten your privacy.