HarmonyOS - Huawei's New Operating SystemThis will replace their previous android interface (EMUI) on over 100 of their smartphone, tablet and smartwatch models over the next 12 months.
Since the Huawei ban in 2019, none of their new devices have been able to use Google services, including the Google Play Store.
From the demos, we can see Huawei trying to imitate bits from Android and Windows systems, but most apparent, is their attempt to imitate Apple and iOS. It seems that Huawei are trying to build an ecosystem; where all your gadgets are synced, and work in harmony - hence "HarmonyOS" perhaps? By having one single operating system, this should enable developers to create apps that work seamlessly between platforms. Thus their limitation is a potential strength. We're not confident however that they'll be able to pull this off in the polished manner that Apple do.
Huawei has proven time and time again that it's technology can compete with that of Apple and Samsung, and often at a lower cost to the consumer. Their marketing isn't quite as polished, and the companies sketchy links to the government have resulted in a constant stream of negative publicity.
HarmonyOS is going to be open source - which means anyone can see, modify and distribute the code. On the surface, it's good for internet privacy. But other companies like Google have released open source software, and still breached privacy. Huawei, given their reputation, may well do the same.
We see a lot less Huawei devices these days. They were really gaining traction a couple of years ago; we think because consumers were interested in trying something new, different and cheap, and the networks were keen to roll them out because they could make good profit margins on them.
Huawei is currently dead outside of China. Having briefly made it to become the worlds largest smartphone vendor, and being consistently in the top 3, they are now ranked 7th. Xiaomi; the Chinese manufacturer and Huawei competitor; have gone from strength to strength, and are currently ranked 3rd.
No doubt, a Huawei phone without Google is near-useless, so HarmonyOS could be the start of a comeback. It's difficult to say at this stage, but we think that the damage is done, and the Company will not recover to their previous highs, unless they can provide something truly exceptional over their competitors.
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