Due to geopolitical tensions, Huawei cannot rely on the Android operating system Google in the long term. In May 2019, we reported that HongMeng OS may become Huawei’s operating system alternative to Android. HongMeng (鸿 蒙) OS is finally getting called HarmonyOS outside of China, and we recently reported that Huawei was trying to attract more developers with financial incentives to bring more apps to HMS (Huawei Mobile Services).
With the recent release of HarmonyOS 2.0 Beta, which is currently available for smart home applications, smartwatches, and head-on displays and will be available for smartphones from December 2020, we now have a clearer timetable.
The version contains SDKs with over 13,000 APIs, documentation, tools and a simulator / emulator. OpenArk is an open source compiler released last September, and Huawei DevEco is the IDE for development built on top of Android Studio.
Huawei also introduced OpenHarmony, which was supposed to conform to the Android Open Source Project (AOSP).
OpenHarmony offers initial support for devices with up to 128 MB RAM. The company will add support for devices with up to 4 GB of RAM by April 2021 and more than 4 GB of RAM by October 2021.
Whether you’re developing apps for the new operating system or HarmonyOS-based devices, the official website has resources to get you started.
That means we should expect the Huawei device to be shipped without Android from 2021 and no Google services, i.e. neither Google Play nor official YouTube, Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps or Chrome apps. In mainland China this isn’t really a problem, but it can get more problematic in other countries, although there are good alternatives, and I doubt that Google can practically prevent Huawei devices from accessing their servers.
I mainly use the Google Play and Gmail apps myself, as I usually surf the Internet with Firefox, where I also watch YouTube videos and rely on the MAPS.me app when I need a navigation system. As a side note, my Xiaomi Mi A2 smartphone recently died (physically damaged memory). So I was looking for a locally available smartphone and bought Huawei Y9 Prime 2019 last month as it is popular in Thailand and meets most of my specs and needs. Price requirements. The phone came with Android 9.0 but I was upgraded to Android 10 and so far everything works fine including Google Services. We’ll see how it continues on September 15th as Google has to cut all connections with Huawei. Will my phone get an update for HarmonyOS at some point? Probably not as the phone would have been released for about 2 years.
Via Liliputing and Android Authority
Jean-Luc started CNX Software part-time in 2010 before quitting his job as a software engineering manager and later starting in 2011, writing daily news and reviews.