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Huawei Mate 20 X dropped from EE's, Vodafone's 5G launch

It's no longer clear when the Huawei's 5G phone will go on sale in the UK.

huawei-mate-20-x-5g

Huawei added 5G to last year's Mate 20 X.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Huawei's Mate 20 X 5G was set to become the company's first 5G phone in the UK. But on Wednesday UK carriers Vodafone and EE said they're pulling it from their device lineups for their 5G network launches.

This follows a report Sunday that Huawei's upcoming phones will no longer get access to Google apps and services like Gmail and Google Play. Google suspended business with Huawei that isn't covered under open-source licensing, following the Trump administration's decision last week to effectively ban the Chinese company in the US.

EE said last week that it would offer the Mate 20 X for its 5G launch. But Wednesday when EE announced the May 30 rollout of its 5G network, the phone was nowhere to be seen. 

"We've put the Huawei devices on pause until we've got a bit more information on that," Marc Allera, EE's CEO. said at a press conference. Allera said he wants to make sure that EE can guarantee ongoing support for customers who buy Huawei phones.

Vodafone, which is set to launch its 5G network on July 3, is also withdrawing the Mate 20 X from its lineup of 5G devices.

"We are pausing preorders for the Huawei Mate 20X (5G) in the UK," a spokesman for Vodafone said Wednesday. "This is a temporary measure while uncertainty exists regarding new Huawei 5G devices. We will keep this situation under review."

Huawei didn't immediately respond to request for comment.

ReadSamsung has the most to gain from Google putting Huawei on ice

Huawei Mate 20 X 5G

Huawei threw its hat into the 5G ring with the announcement of the Mate 20 X 5G last week. The 7.2-inch hulk of a handset would do battle with the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G and the newly announced OnePlus 7 Pro 5G

It was scheduled to go on sale in the UK in June for £999. While there's no word of wider availability, that price converts to $1,279 in the US and AU$1,856 in Australia.

huawei-mate-20-x-5g-3

The phone has the same triple-camera array as the standard Mate 20 X.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The phone itself is essentially a 5G-enabled version of the Mate 20 X that the Chinese company launched in October. Aside from its whopping 7.2-inch display, it's packing Huawei's Kirin 980 processor, a huge 4,200mAh battery and a triple camera array on the back, consisting of standard zoom, telephoto zoom and super wide angle.

It's surprising that the company's first 5G phone is based on a handset launched last year, rather than the much more recent P30 Pro -- a stellar phone that earned a very high score to in our full review. A P30 Pro with superfast 5G speeds would make for a formidable handset. That said, Huawei has confirmed that its upcoming foldable phone, the Mate X, will be 5G-enabled. 

huawei-mate-20-x-5g-2

It has a huge 7.2-inch display.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Right now we don't know when the device will be available. Huawei's move into 5G leaves Apple as one of the few major smartphone companies not to have a 5G-enabled handset on the horizon

CNET's Katie Collins contributed to this report.

Originally published May 16.
Update, May 17: Adds hands-on photos.
Update, May 22: Adds EE's and Vodafone's decisions.