Western Digital, Seagate Differ on Selling Hard Drives to Huawei

Being one of the leading high-tech companies in the world, Huawei has to buy hardware from thousands of producers. As a result, the restrictions imposed by the US government on Huawei and its affiliates have affected hundreds of companies in the US. Seagate and Western Digital are the world’s only companies that sell both hard drives and solid-state drives. While neither SSDs nor HDDs are made in the US, they use technologies developed in the country. As a result, the companies may need to obtain a license to sell these products to Huawei. Surprisingly, the two firms seem to have different opinions about such a license. To make the matters even more complicated for the Chinese giant, Micron cannot ship SSDs to Huawei. 

Strict Rules

Under the latest rules imposed by the US Department of Commerce on August 17, any company that sells a product subject to US DoC export control that was developed or made using US IP, software, technology or equipment to Huawei or any of its affiliates must obtain a license. The new amendment restricts Huawei and its associates from obtaining “foreign made chips developed or produced from US software or technology to the same degree as comparable U.S. chips.” Technically, the restrictions only concern semiconductors, but since all high-tech devices use chips and most chips nowadays are designed using software developed in the US and then made using equipment partly made in the US, it gets extremely complicated (if not impossible) to sell any product to Huawei.