New Huawei phones will not come pre-installed with Instagram, Facebook or WhatsApp as the US ban continues to hinder the smartphone maker.
Speaking to Reuters, Facebook said that customers who already have Huawei phones will still be able to use its apps and receive updates. However, none of the apps will come pre-installed.
Smartphone vendors often enter business deals to pre-install popular apps such as Facebook. This brings added convenience to consumers who would otherwise have to actively download the apps from the Google Play store or another source.
Reuters reports that it is not clear if other popular apps – such as Twitter – will also stop Huawei from pre-installing their apps on its phones.
It’s been less than three weeks since President Donald Trump restricted the Chinese tech giant’s access to Google’s Android operating system, and already, Huawei’s smartphone business appears to be losing ground in Europe, a critical growth market.
Consumer fear that Huawei phones will quickly become out of date has meant demand for its devices has “dropped off a cliff,” Ben Stanton, a UK-based analyst at Canalys, said by phone, citing discussions with phone carriers, retailers and distributors.
“That is rooted in this fear that the device may lose features, be insecure, lose support or even lose tangible value.”
In France, sales of premium Huawei smartphones fell by about one-fifth in the week after the US blacklisted the company, according to a telecom industry representative who asked not to be identified as the figures are private.
More British consumers have been trading in Huawei phones, and UK phone carriers starting the next-generation of mobile services have cut Huawei’s Mate 20 X 5G flagship handset out of their launches.