This is only my opinion, and not the representation of Saintel Daily, LLC.
Best Buy has announced that they are going to stop selling phones and other devices made by the Chinese company Huawei. Which seems absurd at the outset (and may prove to be absurd later), but the reason is that we are living in a New Cold War era. America is squaring off against China and Russia in order to claim global dominance. Best Buy, we should note is America’s largest consumer electronics retailer, putting them just ahead of Amazon. So this is a pretty big deal.
The details around this decision haven’t been announced, but it’s believed that the retailer will start pulling the products from their store shelves in the next few weeks. And what we know is that Best Buy doesn’t want to talk about it. I mean, you can’t blame them, especially when the reason might be like I said – kind of ridiculous. The decision is coming at a really delicate time. The Trump Administration has raised the idea of a global trade war, and they are still expressing concern that Chinese electronic makers like Huawei and ZTE pose a national security threat to the US.
Which is why I think it’s a bit ridiculous. There is this idea that China is somehow implanting some kind of tracking device into the phones that they export to the United States. Which then potentially pose a national security threat because China is going to be able to get some kind of insider information. But if I’m buying a phone, and let’s say I do choose Huawei, what kind of information do I have that will be helpful in terms of security? None. So why am I (the average consumer) getting punished?
Further to the absurdity, here’s another scenario. According to an expert from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, believes that if China decides to invade another country (citing Australia in this instance), the Chinese government can harness these tools that they’ve got sitting inside these phones. Like what? Turn them off? Is there really a concern that Huawei would sell that many phones in the United States that it could possibly overtake to that kind of magnitude? Hence why I think this is a bit absurd.
Here’s where this is kind of humorous though, Huawei is struggling when it comes to sales in the United States. So the fact that Best Buy is pulling the plug on the Huawei phones isn’t a big deal. What’s ironic about all of this is that if this continues, it’s the United States that could lose out big time. If China decided to retaliate, they could start pulling their products from America. This could hurt companies like Apple who are struggling to gain more ground in China.
I think that this needs to be more carefully considered. It’s not a good move if companies start pulling Chinese products because of what might happen. I am not saying that the government shouldn’t be prepared, or even proactive, but perhaps greater levels of regulation is required here. Not punishing both the companies as well as the consumers when all people want is to have options when it comes to buying devices.