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Qualcomm gets OK to sell 4G chips to Huawei, despite US ban, report says

But it's unclear whether Qualcomm could get licenses to sell 5G chips to the China-based company, Reuters reports.

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Edward Moyer is a senior editor at CNET and a many-year veteran of the writing and editing world. He enjoys taking sentences apart and putting them back together. He also likes making them from scratch. ¶ For nearly a quarter of a century, he's edited and written stories about various aspects of the technology world, from the US National Security Agency's controversial spying techniques to historic NASA space missions to 3D-printed works of fine art. Before that, he wrote about movies, musicians, artists and subcultures.
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Qualcomm has reportedly been granted a license by the US government to sell 4G mobile chips to Huawei, despite a ban on American companies selling technology and parts to the China-based telecommunications company.

"We received a license for a number of products, which includes some 4G products," a Qualcomm spokeswoman told Reuters, according to a Saturday report by the news agency. She didn't specify which products Qualcomm can sell, saying only that they have to do with mobile devices. She also said Qualcomm has other license applications pending.

In August, citing national security and foreign policy concerns, the US Commerce Department expanded restrictions meant to limit Huawei's access to chips made using American software and equipment. The department said it wouldn't extend a temporary general license that allowed some transactions involving the "export, reexport, and transfer of items" to Huawei. That temporary license followed a May 2019 executive order from President Donald Trump banning Huawei in the states.

A tech industry analyst told Reuters that the impact of the Qualcomm license would be limited because consumers are starting to opt for newer 5G phones and the license involves 4G chips. It's not clear if Qualcomm will be granted permissions to sell 5G chips to Huawei, according to the news agency.

Neither Huawei nor the US Commerce Department responded to requests for comment. Qualcomm confirmed the spokeswoman's statement given to Reuters.