Huawei Readies Harmony OS For 2021 Android Replacement

Huawei has announced the next iteration of its Harmony OS, as it seeks an alternative to the Android mobile operating system.

This is according to the Verge, which cited Huawei CEO Richard Yu when he introduced the second version of HarmonyOS at the annual Huawei Developer Conference in Shenzhen, China.

It comes after Android 11 began deployments this week. Huawei was placed on a US national security blacklist in May 2019 that forbids it from doing business with US companies. It is already cut off from many Google services, with Android the next to go.

Image credit: Huawei

HarmonyOS 2.0

According to Huawei’s Yu, developers will get their hands on version 2.0 of the new mobile operating system this week, meaning a smartphone release should be seen sometime in 2021.

A smartphone version of the SDK will follow in December 2020, and Yu hinted that phones running HarmonyOS might appear next year.

The first iteration of HarmonyOS arrived in 2019 and was primarily designed for ‘industrial use,’ the next generation mobile OS will be deployed in smartphones, TVs, smartwatches, and in-car systems.

The first device to use Harmony, which is known as Hongmeng in China, was a television bearing the Honor brand.

So what does the second generation of the operating system offer?

Well it seems that HarmonyOS 2.0 will deliver smarter voice recognition, an ‘adaptive’ user interface, security improvements, faster cross-device data transfers, and improved multi-screen functionality.

Harmony will be an important offer for Huawei, as it seeks to safeguard its smartphone position in light of increasingly severe US restrictions.

In October last year, a workaround that allowed its users of the Huawei Mate 30 smartphone to download Google apps, was cut off.

Prior to that in August 2019, Huawei users had been warned that its flagship smartphone, the Mate 30, would not be launched with Google apps such as YouTube, GMail or Google Maps.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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