Two years ago if you said Huawei and ZTE in a room with a bunch of Android enthusiasts they may not bat an eye. Both companies, which come from China are major players in the world wide mobile phone market but until recently weren’t big names in the United States.
Both companies also made their smartphone debut in the U.S. with Cricket Wireless. In 2010 Huawei introduced the Huawei Ascend Android phone on Cricket Wireless. This year, ZTE’s first Android phone in the U.S. also came by way of Cricket called the ZTE score. ZTE has since launched phones with Boost Mobile and AT&T as well.
More after the break
Huawei has introduced phones on most of the U.S. carriers. They’ve also manufactured the T-Mobile Springboard tablet for T-Mobile.
With their rapid deployment of Android devices, it seems the U.S. House Intelligence Committee has started a probe into whether the companies’ expansion into the U.S. is a threat. We’d tell the committee, NO that’s just how fast Android phones are released.
According to the committees top two congressmen, Mike Rogers and Dutch Ruppersberger, they think the companies presence gives “the Chinese government an opportunity for greater foreign espionage”.
At this point in time these claims seem pretty silly and both companies have promised to be open when it comes to the investigation
“ZTE is wholly committed to transparency and will cooperate in addressing any questions regarding our business,” Mitchell Peterson, a U.S.-based spokesman, said in an e-mail to Bloomberg Wednesday.
“Our company is publicly traded with operations in more than 140 countries and we are confident a fair review will further demonstrate ZTE is a trustworthy and law-abiding partner for all U.S. carriers and their customers,” Peterson said.
While ZTE’s expansion in the United States seems to just be device line for right now, Huawei did come under scrutiny last year while bidding on a Sprint contract involving infrastructure.
Huawei was founded by an ex Chinese military officer, Ren Zhengfei, however he retired from the Chinese military in 1984, four years before founding Huawei.