Legal action between the US and China has worsened relations between the two countries with President Donald Trump orchestrating a trade war. Trump has called for China to better protect the intellectual property of foreign firms. Tensions between the two countries have now spilled into the relationship between Apple and Huawei.
It is alleged that Chinese tech giant Huawei use tactics deemed “dubious” in a bid to reverse engineer technology from Apple and fellow competitors in the electronics market. Such accusations can be traced back to November when according to The Information, a Huawei engineer tacked down a supplier that helped build the Apple Watch’s heart sensor. The same engineer was said to be heading up smart watch development for Huawei’s own wearable device.
Four researchers accompanied the engineer. In total, the group are said to have spent over one hour enquiring about the Watch. With nothing revealed, Huawei fell silent. It is reported that the Chinese company used similar tactics against Motorola, Akhan Semiconductor and Cisco. The U.S. Justice Department have since claimed that Huawei actually rewards its employees for extracting data with added bonuses for even more confidential information.
Huawei have also allegedly copied a 2016 connector design used to make the MacBook Pro hinge thinner while linking the display to the logic board. Last year, a similar component was present in Huawei’s 2018 MateBook Pro. This was something only achieved by shopping Apple’s schematic around to various suppliers. Many of which recognised the designed and refused to build it. However, they eventually found a partner willing to do so.
In an exclusive interview with the BBC, the founder of Huawei has said there is “no way the US can crush” the company.