Editor: Jason “The Bok” – Date: 19 Feb 2020
During 2019 a trade ban was imposed on mobile giant Huawei. Having always been a strong supporter of the brand and its continued innovation, I was shocked and disappointed to see how political tensions would result in the mobile makers future rollout of smartphones and the way in which they operate.
My journey into Android started many moons ago with my first introduction being on a Huawei device. While it was a simple Android smartphone, it showed me the power of the brand and massive potential for Google’s open-source operating system. Many a device later, I still favour Huawei as one of my best mobile phone makers, as do much of the world apparently with the brand holding the position as the second-largest mobile phone manufacturer by volume. Having been incredibly innovative along the journey, and building beautiful products with a sloid base is what has lead to Huawei being recognised within the leading brands of the world, but what about today and the ongoing ban? What does this mean for Huawei?
I was invited to a discussion with Huawei South Africa’s chief technology officer, Akhram Mohamed to discuss some future plans for the brand including Huawei HMS core, Harmony OS and future exciting developments which are on the cards.
First, let’s start by dispelling a few misconceptions and things which I myself was even unsure about before the discussion. I had heard rumours floating around online that Huawei devices will no longer work with anything Google related. Some of my own friends and family had discussed the idea of moving to other devices because of their need function “normally” day to day and use major applications, such as Whatsapp, Twitter, Facebook, banking apps etc. Before today, I myself was unsure where things were headed, but understanding Huawei HMS changes the game completely!
Where Google had developed 24 kits to aid developers in creating applications which encompass the likes of location, mapping, security and manaing adds for example over the past decade, Huawei has now developed 24 of their own kits to aid developers and done all of this within the last 10-months. What does this mean for the future of Huawei devices?
Future devices will begin to run Huawei HMS Core and still run on the Android open-source platform. In other words, thanks to Huawei’s own “Play Store or App Store,” now known as App Gallery, users will be able to download apps from a store which already has well over 1,000,000 apps, with over 11,000 top tier applications, 75 key South African top-hitting applications and many more in the works.
Thanks to rigorous testing and Huawei sticking to their assurance that the mobile experience on their smartphones will not be affected, they have created a backend for developers to bring across the major applications which we use day-to-day and even add further enhancements which can be improved by the brand’s impressive hardware and software capabilities.
Using what is known as a 1+8+N approach, Huawei has created one system which will work seamlessly across many devices. This means access to everything that you know and love with Android. Almost every app that you know and love working seamlessly, with only a few fully Google Mobile Service (GMS) applications requiring a side solution where account sign-in is required, such as YouTube, Google Maps, and Play Music for instance. All apps, therefore, work as per normal, with just a few requiring “sign-ins” if required via a browser. In short your mobile operating system on Huawei’s upcoming devices from entry to flagship will continue to push boundries and bring the Android experience we have come used to with the power of all the apps we love and use daily.
In conclusion, Huawei’s HMS gives complete peace of mind, that Huawei will continue to create ground-breaking hardware, with software which not only matches-up, but further improves and enhances on the power of the Android system and its application abilties.
Huawei’s commitiment to building an ecosystem which embodies Android, Harmony OS and HMS abilities certianly concretes my further confidence in the future of Huawei. To back-up this point up further, Huawei VIP concierge service stores will be available to all customers as HMS rolls out on future devices, to ensure that any customer queries can be immideatly addressed.
I can say that I am incredibly excited for what the future holds and to see a brand which has been growing year-on-year reach that top spot as the global leader in smartphone sales.