Lenovo’s CEO says world’s biggest PC maker has no plan to develop its own OS and chips as tech tensions rise

25-May-2019 Intellasia | South China Morning Post | 6:00 AM Print This Post

The CEO of Lenovo Group said the world’s largest PC maker is not planning to develop its own operating system (OS) and chips despite rising fears that a slew of other Chinese technology companies could find themselves facing the same fate as Huawei by having their access to US technology cut off.

“Lenovo does not intend to develop operating systems or chips as globalisation remains an inevitable trend, therefore it is not necessary for a company to specialise in everything,” Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing said during a media briefing on Thursday.

“We will do our own job and do it well,” Yang said, adding that Lenovo will continue to cooperate with trusted partners to provide users with the best products.

Yang’s comments come after telecoms major Huawei was added to a trade blacklist by the US last week that prevents it from buying US technology, and amid media reports that a raft of other Chinese companies could be added to the list if they are deemed a threat to US national security. The US is deliberating whether to add Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology, Zhejiang Dahua Technology, Megvii and two other video surveillance companies to its Entity List, Bloomberg reported this week.

Lenovo was founded in Beijing in November 1984 as Legend and was incorporated in Hong Kong in 1988. Lenovo acquired IBM’s personal computer business in 2005 and agreed to acquire its Intel-based server business in 2014.

Lenovo’s stance contrasts with that of Huawei, which has said it has been preparing for years to cope with the eventuality of it being cut off from US tech, by developing its own alternative hardware. Shenzhen-based DJI, the world’s largest consumer drone brand, said it has also been developing proprietary technologies as a backstop.

Yang said that Lenovo has more “flexibility” to deal with emergencies as the Chinese company is now playing at a “horizontal level” with competitors, which enables it to “make adjustments” to changes in the competitive environment, without elaborating further.

“Huawei has always been an important customer of [ours] for personal computers,” Yang said in the interview. “Lenovo will maintain business relationships with all customers under the premise of respecting local laws, including Huawei,” he said.

Last week, Lenovo dismissed speculation that it was about to cave in to US pressure by suspending supplies to Huawei.

Lenovo did not immediately reply to a request for comment on Yang’s remarks.



Category: China

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