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Huawei Unveils First Look At Its Own Operating System, Says Might Switch From Google Immediately If Needed

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HarmonyOS is official. Official. The new operating system was revealed by Chinese telecom giant Huawei on Friday in response to the risk of losing access to Android devices in the face of rising US-China trade tensions. A fresh press conference in the southern town of Dongguan, Richard Yu, Head of consumer Huawei, said that the new scheme known in Chinese as HongMeng, would “give more harmony and comfort to the globe.”

The highly anticipated software is regarded essential for the survival of the tech group as it confronts the imminent prohibition of American businesses selling technology products to Huawei, which could remove their access to Google’s Android operating scheme.

Yu said the new system was a “future-oriented OS” that “was smoother and safer” and said that it was “totally distinct than Android and iOS.”

Huawei said that the HarmonyOS will launch its first version in its intelligent screen goods later this year, before extending over the next three years to cover a variety of intelligent devices, including wearable technology.

“If you are wondering when we’ll be using this on the smartphone, we can do it at any moment,” Yu added that they prioritize using the Harmony-compatible Google Android operating scheme.

“However, if we can’t use it (Android), we can switch to Harmony OS instantly,” he said.

The company was deepened in the trade war between Beijing and Washington in May which saw punitive tariffs slapping on trillions of dollars in bidirectional business.

Huawei, the world’s number two smartphone manufacturer and superfast fifth-or 5-Generation leader, has been listed black by US President Donald Trump, suspecting that he is providing a backdoor for Chinese intelligence services that the company rejects.

Beijing overturned US regulations prohibiting Huawei and other Chinese firms from public agreements on Thursday and said they amounted to’ abuse of state authority.’

As a consequence of US move to Huawei, American firms are no longer permitted to sell technology goods to the company, but Washington granted a three-month exemption period–ending last week–before the measure came into force.

This ban could stop the Chinese technology company from using software and important equipment, including smartphone chips and Google Android operating system components, which are supported by a large majority of smartphones, including Huawei.

Huawei has reportedly been working on its own OS since 2012, but the group has always told the public that they do not want to substitute their Android devices with their home OS.

In an interview in March, Yu informed German newspaper, Die Welt, that building its own operating system was’ Plan B.’

Kenny Liew, Fitch Solutions technology analyst, said that Huawei will be able to “create a brand fresh ecosystem at less price” and “mitigate its dependency on US providers on its software requirements.”

Smartphones using the scheme, however, would primarily be restricted to the Chinese market, Liew said.

It is a complicated matter to develop an operating system and the whole ecosystem that accompanies it.

Besides Google’s Android, Apple’s iOS, available solely on your iPhone, is the only other common operating system.

Earlier this year, Microsoft released the plug on its Windows Phone platform and the Tizen system of Samsung was hardly recognized in comparison with Android and iOS.

But Huawei could have difficulty convincing customers outside China to purchase their devices without access to the complete Android or the famous Google services – not to mention the many apps available in the Google Play store.

Gary Evans
Gary is Executive Editor of Drew Reports News, where he covers technology and power. Previously, he was a foreign correspondent at Drew Reports News based in Seoul, South Korea as well as a venture capitalist with General Catalyst in Palo Alto and Charles River Ventures in Boston and New York.

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