Published: Fri, August 09, 2019
Electronics | By Kelly Massey

Meet HarmonyOS, Huawei’s alternative to Google’s Android operating system

Meet HarmonyOS, Huawei’s alternative to Google’s Android operating system

The company mentioned it will only use it if Android is not allowed on its smartphones.

These apps would work across multiple devices categories, which can range from televisions to vehicle kits, more personal devices like smartphones and smartwatches.

Huawei on Friday introduced "HarmonyOS", a new operating system which is set to take on Google's Android and Apple's iOS.

HarmonyOS will also feature on watches, speakers and vehicle head units down the line, but isn't limited to these device categories. Huawei now uses Android to power its smartphones and other devices, but previously admitted it was developing its own OS as a "plan B" should it be no longer able to use the Google software. Richard Yu, Huawei's CEO, stated that the new system is "ready to go" for smartphones.

Yu adds that the ARK Compiler used in HarmonyOS app development will also support Kotlin, Java, Javascript, C, and C++. However, he said the Chinese firm's "priority" is to still use Android in its devices, though it could easily switch to Harmony at any point if necessary.

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Huawei says we can expect HarmonyOS 1.0 in smart screen products that will launch later this year.

Huawei - considered the world leader in superfast fifth-generation or 5G equipment and the world's number two smartphone producer - has been blacklisted by US President Donald Trump amid suspicions it provides a backdoor for Chinese intelligence services, something the firm denies. Still, this assertion could very well be read as a threat should the United States decide to restrict trade with Huawei again.

As per XDA, Harmony OS is a microkernel-based operating system that is similar to the Fuchsia OS that is being worked upon by Google.

It's unclear how that global version shipping with Android squares with the current ban in place that's preventing Google from pushing out Android updates and security patches to Huawei.

It's looking like that phone will be the Mate 30 Lite, with Huawei rumored to be prepping an Android version for Europe and worldwide markets and another for the Chinese market.

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