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Huawei P40 Pro found to contain U.S. parts in spite of blacklist

A teardown of the P40 Pro has revealed that Huawei is using components made by U.S. companies.

What you need to know

  • A Huawei P40 Pro teardown by the Financial Times found that the phone still features hardware from U.S. entities.
  • The device has RF front-end modules and antennas from Qualcomm, Skyworks, and Qorvo.
  • At this point, it isn't clear if Skyworks and Qorvo secured licenses to supply the parts to Huawei.

Huawei's inclusion in the U.S. Entity List means it is not allowed to do any business with U.S. companies, and the Chinese manufacturer's latest phones in the P40 series lack Google services as a result. The ban also extends to the hardware, with Huawei banned from using any hardware components made by U.S. companies.

However, as the Financial Times discovered, that isn't the case on the P40 Pro. The publication commissioned a teardown of the P40 Pro (paywall) and found that the phone features RF front-end modules and antennas from three U.S. entities: Qualcomm, Skyworks, and Qorvo. While Qualcomm has secured a license from the U.S. commerce department to work with Huawei, but it isn't clear if Skyworks and Qorvo have done the same.

It is interesting that the teardown found U.S. parts inside Huawei's latest flagship, because a similar teardown of the Mate 30 Pro by iFixit revealed no parts from Skyworks or Qorvo. Huawei instead used alternatives sourced from its in-house HiSilicon division.

At this point, we don't know why the Chinese manufacturer went back to using U.S.-sourced components, but we've reached out to Huawei for clarification and will update once we have more details.

With the ban stretching for over a year now, Huawei has had to find alternatives to U.S.-based entities for hardware. And as you can make out from that chart above, it was able to do so. The manufacturer switched from U.S-based Micron to Samsung for flash memory modules, and aside from the RF modules — where U.S. vendors have a clear advantage — it was able to secure parts from Chinese and South Korean manufacturers.


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