On Friday, the CEO of the Consumer Division of Huawei, Richard Yu, announced the launch of the company’s own Operating System known as HongmengOS. In English HongmengOS is known as HarmonyOS. While talking at the Huawei Developer Conference, he said that this operating system could be installed across several devices.
These devices range from smart speakers to smartphones and even sensors. It is the part of the play of Huawei in the so-called IoT (Internet of Things). It refers to devices connected with the internet. Initially, “smart screen products” like TVs will be using the OS.
However, in the coming three years, the OS will be used in all other devices such as car head units and wearable. According to Yu, the initial launch for the Huawei HongmengOS / HarmonyOS is for China only. The company may later expand into other markets.
USA Ban on Huawei
USA blacklisted Huawei in May, putting it on the ‘Entity List’. It means that the US companies cannot conduct business dealings with Huawei. As a result, Google ceased all business activities with Huawei. But after a few days, USA relaxed a few restrictions. Hence, Google continued to work for another 90 days with Huawei.
How HarmonyOS / HongmengOS Works
HarmonyOS is actually an open-source OS; it means that different other devices can use this operating system theoretically. Being an open-source OS will help it to expand its scale of operation and attract developers to create apps for this. All operating systems need to have a large number of useful applications.
The purpose of Harmony OS is to develop a single software which will perform well for all devices. These devices range from smartphones and laptops that can store a large amount of power and data, to smaller hardware devices such as speakers and sensors which need a lower bandwidth solution. In this way, this new OS by Huawei can work for several devices.
Huawei ‘Plan B’
Due to USA’s moves, American firms are not permitted to transfer technology-related products to a Chinese firm after the exemption period of 3 months. Since 2012, Huawei is working on developing its own OS. But it was stated publically that the company wants to operate devices using Android rather than home OS. During an interview with a German newspaper, Yu said that developing their own OS was actually a “Plan B.”
It is a complicated task to develop an operating system and then an ecosystem to accompany it. Apart from Android by Google, the only OS that is working is iOS by Apple and is available only for the iPhone. Android and iOS enjoy a monopoly.
Without having complete access to the full Android version or the famous Google services which includes all the apps available on the Play store – it would be difficult for Huawei to convince customers outside China to purchase its smartphones. Nevertheless, Huawei has launched a new smartphone with Google Playstore and other Google services.