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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The march toward a tech Cold War between the U.S. and China is continuing, but both sides are ignoring the reality of just how much they need each other. The 2 nations certainly would like to be independent, but today neither one's vast tech economy can function without the other.

Why it matters: A continued trade impasse will likely mean lots of pain on both sides of the Pacific.

  • The U.S. relies to a vast degree on China to manufacture many key products.
  • China, on the other hand, depends on software and chips from the U.S. for its devices and data centers.

Between the lines: People think of China's internet as mostly separate from ours, not only because of the language/alphabet differences but also because of different laws, different culture and a separate set of dominant internet firms (like Baidu and Tencent).

  • Yes, but: That separation masks just how interconnected the 2 countries' technology industries are, particularly at the hardware level.

By the numbers: According to CompTIA, the U.S. exported $19.3 billion in tech products and services to China last year, accounting directly for more than 52,000 jobs.

  • And while China exports far more technology to the U.S. — an estimated $187.7 billion worth — those products include gear that is designed in the U.S., including Apple iPhones, Amazon Echos and Google Nest thermostats.

The latest: The Trump administration's ban on business with Huawei has highlighted those ties, with the global telecom industry facing a significant quandary.

  • The goal is to keep Huawei from being a part of 5G networks, but 5G is built on top of existing 4G gear.
  • And lots of networks outside the U.S. — and even some rural networks here — already include Huawei equipment. Ripping out that gear would cost a fortune and significantly delay the rollout of 5G.

At the same time, the trade war has sent U.S. companies scrambling to find other countries to produce their gear, hurting one of China's largest tech industries.

  • Already earlier this year, companies including Cisco, Nokia and GoPro, were looking to diversify their manufacturing to avoid being a casualty in the trade war. The shift is already taking a toll on Chinese tech manufacturers, I'm told.

Meanwhile, tensions continue to escalate.

  • The New York Times reported late Tuesday that the administration is considering whether to ban Hikvision, a giant Chinese manufacturer of video surveillance equipment, from buying U.S. components. Several other Chinese firms could also face a ban, per Bloomberg.
  • U.K.-based ARM is cutting Huawei off as well, according to the BBC. ARM's designs underlie most modern mobile chips, and without access to them, Huawei's plans to replace U.S.-made chips with its own could falter.

What they're saying: While U.S. tech giants are staying largely quiet on the latest escalation, leading trade groups representing those companies told Axios they are urging both sides to come to the negotiating table.

  • Semiconductor Industry Association CEO John Neuffer: “We’re uneasy about rising tensions and the setback in negotiations, but it’s clearly in the interest of both sides to get back to the negotiating table, right the ship, and strike a productive deal."
  • CompTIA VP Stefanie Holland: "We’re certainly urging the administration to reach an agreement." Holland said that increased tariffs have been counterproductive, with member companies largely finding themselves unable to pass along the cost to consumers.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Broncos and 49ers the latest NFL teams impacted by coronavirus crisis

From left, Denver Broncos quarterbacks Drew Lock, Brett Rypien and Jeff Driskel during an August training session at UCHealth Training Center in Englewood, Colorado. Photo: Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown the NFL season into chaos, with all Denver Broncos quarterbacks sidelined, the San Francisco 49ers left without a home or practice ground and much of the Baltimore Ravens team unavailable, per AP.

Driving the news: The Broncos confirmed in a statement Saturday night that quarterbacks Drew Lock, Brett Rypien and Blake Bortles were identified as "high-risk COVID-19 close contacts" and will follow the NFL's mandatory five-day quarantine, making them ineligible for Sunday's game against New Orleans.

Updated 11 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: WHO: AstraZeneca vaccine must be evaluated on "more than a press release."
  2. Politics: McConnell temporarily halts in-person lunches for GOP caucus.
  3. Economy: Safety nets to disappear in DecemberAmazon hires 1,400 workers a day throughout pandemic.
  4. Education: U.S. public school enrollment drops as pandemic persists.
  5. Cities: Surge in cases forces San Francisco to impose curfew — Los Angeles County issues stay-at-home order, limits gatherings.
  6. Sports: NFL bans in-person team activities Monday, Tuesday due to COVID-19 surge — NBA announces new coronavirus protocols.
  7. World: London police arrest more than 150 during anti-lockdown protests — Thailand, Philippines sign deal with AstraZeneca for vaccine.

Tony Hsieh, longtime Zappos CEO, dies at 46

Tony Hsieh. Photo: FilmMagic/FilmMagic

Tony Hsieh, the longtime ex-chief executive of Zappos, died on Friday after being injured in a house fire, his lawyer told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. He was 46.

The big picture: Hsieh was known for his unique approach to management, and following the 2008 recession his ongoing investment and efforts to revitalize the downtown Las Vegas area.

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