Good morning this Monday! Here’s your daily tech digest, by way of the DGiT Daily newsletter, for July 1, 2019! Welcome to July, tech fans.

1. Huawei gets a lifeline

Over the weekend, on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Osaka, U.S. President Trump gave China a significant trade concession, announcing “U.S. companies can sell their equipment to Huawei,” relaxing the restrictions handed down on May 15.

What went down:

  • This backflip, sideflip, or obvious ploy playing out in the same way as the ZTE ban didn’t exactly shock anyone.
  • But the lack of detail did leave many wondering just what was going on.
  • How would Huawei be allowed back into the fold, after so much was said against it? Would Trump be able to make the concession pass through Congress?

Now there’s more detail:

  • White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow revealed more information in an interview on Fox News Sunday.
  • Kudlow contradicted earlier reports that Huawei would be removed from the Department of Commerce ‘entity list’, dispelling those notions.
  • Instead, Kudlow said the Trump administration would simply grant some licenses to allow U.S. companies to sell products to Huawei, under the proviso that sales pose no threat to national security, Kudlow said.
  • “This is not a general amnesty, if you will,” said Kudlow.
  • “Huawei will remain on the so-called entity list where there are serious export controls and in national security inferences or suggestions there won’t be any licenses.”
  • You can watch the Huawei-relevant part of the Fox News Sunday interview on Twitter.

The list of unknowns remains longer than the list of knowns:

  • The national security angle seems to be more about telecommunications and network backend equipment, such as Huawei’s 5G technology.
  • It may be that the main restriction will be on supplying technology for mobile and cellular networks.
  • In terms of consumer devices, but the thought is that Huawei will again be able to acquire basic components like Qualcomm processors and Google’s Android OS, to continue developing and selling smartphones.

The underlying issue:

  • While Trump appears to be using Huawei as just part of his trade war, the main problem for the U.S. is that the technology (cold) was between China and Chinese manufacturers, and the rest of the world, isn’t going to stop.
  • China, more than ever before, will be racing to become self-sufficient, which will eventually hurt U.S. tech: China will stop buying products from the likes of Qualcomm, Intel, Broadcom, Google, and so on, the moment it can.
  • Tim Culpan at Bloomberg referred to the coming divide as “a digital iron curtain” that will continue to be drawn, “which separates the world into two distinct technological spheres of influence”.

More to come in this debacle, no doubt!


2. Eric Zeman takes T-Mobile’s brand new 5G network for a spin (Android Authority).


3. Staff picks: 7 things Joe Hindy uses every day – some interesting gear here (AA).


4. Also, win not one but two Samsung Galaxy 10 phones in a photo contest (U.S. only) (AA).


5. Trump officials might kill encryption, hurting WhatsApp, iMessage, and more (AA).


6. Good detail from the WSJ about Jony Ive having moved on from Apple, with Tim Cook’s disinterest design part of the problem: “Ive was “dispirited” by Tim Cook, who “showed little interest in the product development process,” according to WSJ sources.” (WSJ).


7. Weekends are the wild west for Bitcoin, but nobody knows why. FOMO, Groupthink, or just getting ahead of the pack? (Bloomberg).


8. CNET comes in clutch with useful tips ahead of Amazon Prime Day 2019 (CNET).


9. An Amazon engineer made an AI-powered cat flap to stop his cat from bringing home dead animals (The Verge).


10.“Stranger Things 3” is like an 8-hour summer blockbuster and its best season yet, here’s a non-spoiler review (io9).


11. Two big space events on Tuesday: NASA’s critical safety test of the Orion crew capsule, and a total solar eclipse in South America (space.com).


12. Also, all but three of the 60 SpaceX Starlink satellites are working (Geekwire)


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