Huawei’s network equipment business appears to be in a bit of pickle these days. Amid growing concerns that the equipment may allow the Chinese government to carry out spying operations, mobile carriers in a couple of countries have decided against sourcing them from Huawei. A new report claims that Japan’s SoftBank is now considering replacing the Huawei equipment on its network.
SoftBank already sources some equipment from both European suppliers. It also has the longest running relationship with Huawei of any top Japanese telecommunications provider.
Nikkei reported today that SoftBank is planning to replace the 4K network equipment from Huawei with hardware from Ericsson and Nokia. It’s not surprising to hear this following the increased scrutiny of Huawei by the United States. The country has reportedly been leaning on its allies to shun Huawei equipment as well.
SoftBank is the third largest telecommunications company in Japan. The report mentions that not only is the company planning to replace the existing Huawei equipment, it’s also going to source the equipment for its 5G network from Nokia and Ericsson instead of Huawei.
The company itself hasn’t confirmed or denied such a move at this point in time. A spokesperson for SoftBank said that the Nikkei report was “based on speculation and no decision has been made.”