Huawei sold off its Honor sub-brand back in November 2020, saying it was under “tremendous pressure” to do so due to the effects of the US trade ban. Shortly after the sale, it was reported that Qualcomm and the newly independent Honor were in discussions to resume their partnership.
Now, China Business News (via Sina Finance) reports that Honor and Qualcomm are indeed working together once again, citing Honor insiders. It’s claimed that Qualcomm didn’t require regulatory approval to work with the phone manufacturer, as Honor wasn’t on the Entity List.
This partnership would be a major deal for Honor if true, as chipset supply was one of the biggest challenges for the brand (and its former parent company). Honor under Huawei was heavily reliant on in-house Kirin chipsets for its flagship phones, but US sanctions meant that flagship Kirin chipsets could no longer be produced.
Qualcomm is considered the top dog in the high-end space though, so this reported partnership would open the door for the newly independent Honor to gain access to the latest flagship silicon once again. In other words, we fully expect a Snapdragon 888 Honor phone in 2021 if the reported partnership is happening.
We’ve contacted both Honor and Qualcomm to confirm the news and will update the article accordingly. But if the two companies are indeed working together without requiring US approval, it also suggests that Google support shouldn’t be an issue for Honor.