Laptops, Smartphones Among Next to Be Hit by Trump Tariffs

Laptops, tablets and phones may be affected by tariffs on goods imported from China. (Image credit: Shutterstock)

Finished electronics have avoided the Trump administration's tariffs on goods imported from China, but soon that may not be the case. Reuters reports that laptops and smartphones are on the list of items that may be subject to tariffs, along with a number of other items, including clothing, food, books and toys.

The U.S. Trade Representative's Office said that there will be a public hearing on June 17 to discuss its new list of 3,805 product categories that, if approved, could be affected by tariffs as high as 25%. The tariffs would go into effect at the end of June, close to U.S. President Donald's Trump's next meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping at a G20 leaders summit in Japan.

If approved, this proposal would affect effectively any consumer product that wasn't hit by previous rounds of tariffs. This could have a great effect on companies that manufacture their laptops, smartphones, tablets or other electronics in China, such as Apple and Microsoft, as well as one company based overseas that ships to the U.S. to sell their products.

A representative for a major laptop manufacturer told Tom's Hardware that the company had been spending the past six months studying backup solutions to their current laptop manufacturing in China. The company had already moved some items subject to tariffs into Taiwan. The person said that this will "for sure affect the retail selling price" in the short term.

Over the weekend, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow contradicted Trump, suggesting it's the U.S. that will pay for tariffs on goods coming into the U.S., as opposed to China.

Andrew E. Freedman is a senior editor at Tom's Hardware focusing on laptops, desktops and gaming. He also keeps up with the latest news. A lover of all things gaming and tech, his previous work has shown up in Tom's Guide, Laptop Mag, Kotaku, PCMag and Complex, among others. Follow him on Threads @FreedmanAE and Mastodon