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Huawei is in the process of creating its own proprietary operating system called Hongmeng. It is expected that they will release a 2,000-yuan (roughly $290) Hongmeng-powered phone in the fourth quarter.
Last week we were witnessing of Huawei’s trying to recover its ‘friendship’ with Google saying they wanted to keep using Google’s Android operating system in its phones instead of jumping to its self-developed Hongmeng system.
Company senior vice president Catherine Chen confirmed that the Hongmeng OS wasn’t even designed for phones but for industrial use mainly for Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Moreover, the company’s founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei said, also last month, that Hongmeng is “likely” to be faster than Android and that Huawei is working on an app ecosystem to rival the Google Play Store and Apple‘s App Store.
However, it seems that the consequences of the U.S. – China trade war are and will be bigger than previously thought and that Huawei will, after all, defer to its previous solution.
But let’s start from the beginning. The trade war hit the American computer industry as nobody thought it would. Chipmakers have been punished over the past two months after the White House put Huawei way int the ‘forbidden zone’. President Donald Trump’s newly proposed tariffs on Chinese imports sting even more.
Just for reminder, last week he said the United States would impose a 10% tariff on the remaining $300 billion in Chinese goods that were not already subject to tariffs. Those goods, which will include laptops, smartphones and other devices, will hit the chipmakers particularly hard.
Be it as it may, the only logical thing Huawei did was to start testing its smartphone equipped with HongMeng operating system (OS). Allegedly, the phone could be put into the market at the end of this year, targeting low- and medium-end markets and priced at around 2,000 yuan ($288.24) to attract software developers and users to join the ecosystem. It is expected that this new smartphone will show up along with the Huawei Mate30 series.
As per rumors, Hongmeng as the replenishment of Google’s operating system will be unveiled at the company’s annual Developer Conference on August 9 in Dongguan, China. The company said the Hongmeng OS would also feature on the brand’s Honor smart TVs and could soon expand into other fields like autonomous driving, according to the report.
Huawei’s revenue in the first half of 2019 grew 23%, partially due to strong local demand for its mobile phones.
While international smartphone sales went rough, its shipments in China increased by 31% year-on-year in the June quarter, according to market research firm Canalys.
Analysts claim that such performance at home came because of the great quality of its devices, which have long led China’s high-end Android phone market, and partially because of patriotism among consumers.
From all that we know, no smartphone manufacturer has been able to split totally from Google and continue to successfully exist with only Android and contributory services (we all remember Microsoft wanting to do that with Nokia).
It will take a lot of R&D, developer support, and investments by the world’s second-largest smartphone manufacturer to be able to break that, what can seem to be ‘catch 22’, and rise as a winner.