William Malcolm

Huawei Launches New Operating System On Smartphones In Challenge To Google Android

Chinese company Huawei Technologies is starting to use an upgraded version of its operating system, which it called HarmonyOS and which will install on your smartphones. As a result, the company expects to recover from the effects of US sanctions, which have significantly affected its business. People who have Huawei phones with the Android operating system from the American company Google will gradually be able to switch to the Harmony operating system.

The company said it will start deploying its operating system from tonight, starting with selected models. Using your own operating system means that the company will no longer be fully dependent on Android. Sanctions imposed by the United States on Huawei under former President Donald Trump have banned Google from providing technical support for new Huawei phone models and making the Google Mobile Services platform available. This is basically the set of development services on which most Android applications are based.

Huawei does not consider its HarmonyOS operating system to be a simple replacement for Android, but rather presents it as a platform for the Internet of Things that connects multiple devices, such as laptops, smart watches, cars and home appliances.

By the end of this year, Huawei wants to have the HarmonyOS operating system installed on 200 million smartphones and 100 million smart devices from other manufacturers, said Wang Cheng-lu, head of the software department of the Huawei Consumer Business division. It was this man who has been working since 2016 to give Huawei its own operating system. Wang spoke to reporters about the company’s plans on Tuesday, but his comments could not be made public until today.

Huawei is the dominant manufacturer of telecommunications equipment, but in May 2019, the company was blacklisted in the United States due to concerns about national security. The US president’s administration has begun to suspect the company of joining the Chinese government, which Huawei has repeatedly denied. Subsequent sanctions significantly affected the business of the company, which used to be the largest smartphone manufacturer in the world. It now ranks sixth and had only about a 4 percent share of the global market in the first quarter, Reuters reported.

But Wang wants to move the company away from smartphones. According to him, the smartphone market is already basically saturated and smartphones remain the main communication device for people, mainly because there are too few platforms for most developers to work for. On the contrary, there was a need for a system that bridged the gap between devices and the possibilities of connecting them.

“The problem with current operating systems is that individual devices can’t be easily connected,” Wang said. Users often have to download separate applications and only use them to connect devices. “But Harmony can connect the devices, so one great device will be created. It will work as a system with one file, literally one device,” he added.

Wang also noted that Huawei would welcome the introduction of the HarmonyOS operating system by other smartphone manufacturers. But Huawei sees a great opportunity in cooperation with manufacturers of devices other than smartphones.

IDC analyst Will Wong pointed out that it doesn’t matter to Huawei whether its operating system will be adopted by other smartphone manufacturers. “(But) in order for Huawei to achieve its ambitions, it will be important for it to win the favor of other electronics brands and possibly car manufacturers for its operating system. And China provides a favorable market ecosystem for the company to achieve this,” Wong said.