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9 Aug, 2019 08:44

Huawei launches own operating system to replace Google’s Android

Huawei launches own operating system to replace Google’s Android

Huawei has rolled out its long-rumored Hongmeng operating system (OS), known as the HarmonyOS. The company says it can switch to the new system at any time, including on phones, if it is unable to use Android.

The Chinese tech giant officially unveiled the new platform on Friday. The operating system can be used on various smart devices and will be launched on “smart screen products,” such as televisions, later this year. After the launch in China, the OS can become available on global markets, Huawei announced.

While the company said that it currently prefers to power its smartphones with Google’s Android, it did not rule out the future use of its own system on smartphones.

“If we cannot use [Android] in the future we can immediately switch to HarmonyOS,” CEO of the Chinese tech giant’s consumer division, Richard Yu, told the Huawei Developer Conference in Dongguan. He added that the switch would take just one or two days.

Among its features, HarmonyOS can adapt to any device to create a “seamless cross-device experience” to build the basis for a “shared developer ecosystem,” according to Huawei. The tech giant also stresses that the new platform will officially be open source, which could be a part of  the firm’s efforts to fend off US spying allegations.

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The possibility of losing access to world’s most popular mobile OS arose after the US placed Huawei on its so-called “Entity List,” effectively barring American companies from doing business with the Chinese tech giant. Complying with the trade blacklisting, Google decided to suspend some business activity with Huawei.

The restrictions were later eased, including 90-day licenses for companies to continue working with Huawei, as well as further permission from US President Donald Trump to sell some equipment. However, Huawei still remains blacklisted and the US-China trade war has only escalated since then.

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