Huawei is rolling out HarmonyOS, the working system developed by the Shenzhen-based agency, to smartphones for the primary time. The announcement was made throughout a launch occasion this afternoon, the place Huawei additionally introduced a brand new smartwatch mannequin, Huawei Watch 3.
Till now, HarmonyOS has been reserved for smartwatches, good audio system, televisions and different life-style merchandise. Nonetheless, Huawei has been exhausting at work reworking the software program right into a fully-fledged different to Google’s immensely widespread Android working system, which powers handsets from Google itself, Samsung, OnePlus, LG, and extra.
Huawei is not ready to make use of the model of Android designed by Google, which ships with quite a few Google-owned providers and apps, together with the Play Retailer, YouTube, Google Maps, Gmail, and extra. As an alternative, Huawei has to depend on an open-source model of the software program, which lags behind by way of options and lacks the Google apps.
Huawei was blocked from its relationship with Google (which had helped Huawei to change into the second-largest smartphone producer on the planet again in 2019, with its sights set on the highest spot) when President Donald J Trump positioned the corporate on a US commerce blacklist – banning all American corporations from doing enterprise with the agency over considerations about its hyperlinks to the Chinese language authorities. The ban meant Google, a US firm based mostly in California, is not in a position to provide Android updates or options to any Huawei-branded gadget.
Following the block, Huawei’s marketshare plunged from 20 % to eight.8 % in a bit of over a yr after the ban got here into drive.
Android accounts for 85.4 % of all smartphones shipped in 2019, whereas Apple’s iOS takes the remaining 14.6 %, the newest figures from IDC has revealed. Huawei’s HarmonyOS, which relies on the open-source model of Android, would nonetheless depend as Android in these figures.
That is much like Amazon’s FireOS, which powers its own-brand model of tablets, however leverages Android beneath all the gloss.
Based on Huawei, HarmonyOS is a extra environment friendly working system. What would take 100 traces of Android code can now be achieved in a single line of HarmonyOS code, the corporate proudly introduced on-stage. This enables HarmonyOS to be extremely environment friendly on lower-powered units, like in-car infotainment programs, which do not have the identical quantity of grunt as the newest flagship smartphone.
Bringing HarmonyOS to smartphones will enable for larger cohesion between its big selection of units. It’s going to enable extra interplay between Huawei smartphones and Huawei-branded Good TVs. For instance, video calls answered on a smartphone may very well be swiped onto the Good TV to make the most of the large display. Telephone calls might be transferred to good audio system, with the decision following you as you wander round the home – seamlessly leaping to the speaker or HarmonyOS gadget closest to you at anybody time.
“HarmonyOS is designed to offer the glue between a rising array of linked units that Huawei is concentrating on,” commented Ben Wooden, chief analyst at CCS Perception. “Huawei will likely be hoping that it might comply with Apple’s lead, by having a single software program platform that extends in all instructions, offering a seamless expertise to clients that purchase into its ecosystem of merchandise.”
Transferring ahead, we count on HarmonyOS to be the default working system that ships with the newest batch of Huawei smartphones and tablets.
For these with a Huawei handset already of their pocket, solely homeowners in China will have the ability to obtain HarmonyOS from right this moment. Throughout its occasion right this moment, Huawei remained tight-lipped about the potential of a worldwide launch for the working system. Huawei Mate 40 and Huawei P40 collection are already receiving the replace in China proper now. Huawei claims that each velocity and battery life are improved when operating HarmonyOS in comparison with its predecessor. Though, we’ll want to attend till it drops within the UK to check that ourselves.