Huawei’s Android replacement is one step closer to becoming a reality

Tencent, Xiaomi, Oppo Reportedly Testing Huawei’s HongMeng OS

Tencent, Xiaomi, Oppo Reportedly Testing Huawei’s HongMeng OS

The smartphone industry, of course, is littered with the carcasses of operating systems that tried to break a lock on the iOS-Android duopoly, which is another reason why Huawei's next steps here are so perilous.

President Trump's move in recent weeks to put Huawei on a blacklist that bans United States companies from doing business with the Chinese brand nearly immediately led to chatter that Huawei's ambition of one day being the biggest smartphone maker in the world just got kneecapped.

"Huawei is in the process of potentially launching a replacement", Mr Williamson said in an interview in Mexico City.

If Huawei's mission to sell Western consumers on a software platform devoid of Google services and possibly many other US-made apps didn't feel tricky enough, try imagining said OS being called Hongmeng.

In an ominous, but vague, warning China said earlier this month that it was drawing up a list of "unreliable" foreign companies, organisations and individuals in what could signal retaliation for the USA sanctions on Huawei.

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Although Google said existing Huawei phones will continue to receive Android security updates to protect the devices from viruses and hacking, the Chinese firm had to act to safeguard its plans for future product launches in worldwide markets.

There is speculation that Huawei may launch the HongMeng operating system later this year with the launch of a new Mate series smartphone, the business flagship for the fall shopping season. It is even rumoured that tests show the HongMeng OS is 60% faster than Google's Android. However, the world's second-largest maker of smartphones has not yet revealed details about its OS. A Tianfeng Securities analyst thinks an October release is on the cards, but at least at first, Huawei could keep the OS exclusive to low-end devices, as its features may not initially meet the needs of high-end users outside of China. "They're doing it by their own desire because, for many of them, Huawei is one of their major customers", he said.

Now, if all the existing devices get a HongMeng update, it could take away a significant share from Android.

Huawei did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Because it's no longer allowed to use Android and Windows on its devices, the Chinese tech giant had to push back several devices, including a Windows laptop that was originally projected to launch this week.

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