mobile | classic
Dataweek Electronics & Communications Technology Magazine





Follow us on:
Follow us on Facebook Share via Twitter Share via LinkedIn


Search...

Electronics Buyers' Guide

Electronics Manufacturing & Production Handbook 2019


 

From the editor’s desk: US-China trade war hits chip makers
29 May 2019, News

The escalating trade war between the US and China has the global economy on high alert, and unless things normalise soon it is going to have massive ramifications on many industries.

Following US president Donald Trump’s decision to raise tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, China responded in kind by announcing it would raise tariffs on $60 billion of American products. Rather than spurring intensified negotiations and some sort of back-down, the Trump administration unsurprisingly responded to this by ratcheting up the tensions, saying it is considering raising tariffs on all of China’s remaining imports, amounting to about $300 billion worth of products.

The economic realities are that US citizens will bear the brunt of the increased cost of imported Chinese goods, and many would argue that Trump is more interested in picking a fight than the welfare of his people. But the fact remains that China has an abysmal record when it comes to protecting (and appropriating) intellectual property of foreign companies, and it was inevitable that the problem would come to a head sooner or later.

One of the biggest companies in the eye of the storm is Huawei. The Chinese telecommunications giant has come under intense scrutiny for its cybersecurity practices, by the US and other countries. The US became the first country to put the company on an official blacklist, when Trump signed an executive order giving the federal government the power to block US companies from buying foreign-made telecommunications equipment deemed a national security risk.

The argument from the American side is the concern that the Chinese government could force companies like Huawei to deliberately build backdoors into its products to spy on American networks. Huawei’s CEO has repeatedly denied this is happening or would ever be countenanced, but depending on your mind set you might think “well, he would say that, wouldn’t he?”

As a Huawei smartphone user, I’m relieved that all the cybersecurity concerns revolve around its telecommunications infrastructure equipment rather than its consumer products. What is worrying in the context of the larger trade war, though, is the fact that Google has announced it will comply with the executive order by blocking support to Huawei for US software, so while a Huawei phone will continue to function it may not receive updates to the Android platform, or to services such as Gmail, Chrome and Google Maps.

Semiconductor chip manufacturers were immediately impacted by these developments, with both Infineon Technologies and STMicroelectronics’ stock prices suffering. Other chip makers, including Intel, Qualcomm, Xilinx and Broadcom were also reported to have instructed employees not to supply Huawei until further notice, and if true, those companies’ revenues will inevitably also take a hit as a result.

On an unrelated note, communications minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams went on SABC’s Morning Live TV programme recently to say that one of the reasons for the delay in implementing digital terrestrial television (DTT) migration is the fact that so few people have registered to receive the free set-top boxes stockpiled by the government. “We have lots of boxes in our warehouse, we’ve been calling upon South Africans, the deserving ones, those that have household income of less than R3 200, to go and register in their post offices, so that we can have the database and they can access the boxes. There’s been a low uptake of the boxes.”

The problem with that argument is that the delay in switching on DTT signals has been one of the central issues around the hold-up all along. So if more people had registered for free boxes, rather than alleviating the problem, surely there would just be more disappointed people waiting for something to watch?

Brett van den Bosch

Editor


Credit(s)
Supplied By: Technews Publishing
Tel: +27 11 543 5800
Fax: +27 11 787 8052
Email: malckey@technews.co.za
www: www.technews.co.za
  Share on Facebook Share via Twitter Share via LinkedIn    

Further reading:

  • Wits University to feature at AI Expo Africa
    31 July 2019, News
    Wits University will be sending a high-level delegation to this year’s AI Expo Africa, where it will launch a major research initiative that is intended to bring about a step change in scientific research ...
  • Celebrating 15 years of Laser Stencil Technology
    31 July 2019, Laser Stencil Technology, News
    Since its inception in 2004, Laser Stencil Technology has grown into a prominent figure in the South African electronics manufacturing industry. Having been involved in circuit board manufacturing using ...
  • From the editor’s desk: Embedded computing drives change
    31 July 2019, Technews Publishing, News
    Mike Goodyer says it best in the title of his article on page 16: “The only constant is change.” While he meant that in relation to developments at Microtronix Manufacturing and within the local electronics ...
  • Electronics news digest
    31 July 2019, News
    South Africa The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has appointed Sipho Mbhokota as the new executive manager for CSIR Defence and Security. His career in the defence and security ...
  • Rugged Interconnect and Pentek further cement partnership
    31 July 2019, Rugged Interconnect Technologies, News
    In May this year, Rugged Interconnect Technologies hosted the co-founder and vice president of Pentek, Rodger Hosking, for a week-long visit to reinforce the two companies’ partnership in the South African market.
  • SA security manufacturers going strong
    31 July 2019, News
    Dataweek spoke to two of the leaders in the local market about what they do, what they’ve been up to, and what their plans are for the future.
  • Clearing the Static: ESD testing and monitoring – Part 3
    31 July 2019, Altico Static Control Solutions, News
    Continuous monitoring and testing are key to effective static charge control. To ensure there are no loopholes in your ESD control programme, all ESD equipment, as well as personnel operating it, need ...
  • Demand for local products highlighted at LME expo
    31 July 2019, News
    The Local Southern African Manufacturing Expo (LME), held in Johannesburg in late May, managed to draw a respectable 3473 visitors in its first ever outing. “The Expo was the culmination of a vision that ...
  • Analog Devices explores use-cases for wearable devices
    31 July 2019, Altron Arrow, News
    In general, it is not just about exercising more or better nutritional intake – there is more interest in monitoring certain vital body parameters. This is the reason why companies in the smart watch ...
  • Company profile: BAMR
    31 July 2019, BAMR, News
    BAMR is a Cape Town-based company that supplies, repairs, services and calibrates instruments, especially in the coatings, corrosion, physical paint testing and allied industries. It has been the supplier ...
  • Electronics news digest
    26 June 2019, News
    South Africa • South Africa is looking to take on a leading role in the international space weather monitoring community. Space weather events are capable of seriously disrupting modern technologies ...
  • Clearing the static: ESD testing and monitoring – Part 2
    26 June 2019, Altico Static Control Solutions, News
    Once you’ve identified an ESD protected area (EPA) and the combination of ESD (electrostatic discharge) control products your facility requires, continuous testing and monitoring need to be conducted. ...

 
 
         
Contact:
Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd
1st Floor, Stabilitas House
265 Kent Ave, Randburg, 2194
South Africa
Publications by Technews
Dataweek Electronics & Communications Technology
Electronics Buyers’ Guide (EBG)

Hi-Tech Security Solutions
Hi-Tech Security Business Directory

Motion Control in Southern Africa
Motion Control Buyers’ Guide (MCBG)

South African Instrumentation & Control
South African Instrumentation & Control Buyers’ Guide (IBG)
Other
Terms & conditions of use, including privacy policy
PAIA Manual





 

         
    Classic | Mobile

Copyright © Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd. All rights reserved.