10 things you should know about Huawei's HarmonyOS

Huawei's newly launched HarmonyOS will be focused on smart IoT devices instead of an Android alternative.

Harmony OS was developed from 2017


Huawei started developing the HarmonyOS operating system in early 2017. The company decided to accelerate everything in 2019 to provide a new platform for its smart screen products this year. v1.0 will initially target the newly announced smart screen products. In 2020, microkernel v2.0 will be released and then, in 2021, v3.0 will be available with additional support for wearable devices. HarmonyOS v1.0 will still have the Linux kernel with its own kernel, but future versions will be completely based on own kernel.

Huawei's HarmonyOS is based on Microkernel, different from Android


Huawei's HarmonyOS is based on Microkernel, similar to Google's Fuchsia operating system. This makes it a more direct competitor to Fuchsia than with Android. This architecture ensures that the new OS can be used on a variety of devices at the same time. Therefore, HarmonyOS will be a multi-device solution instead of the operating system focusing on smartphones.

HarmonyOS will not allow root access


Huawei confirms users will not have root access on the HarmonyOS operating system. This has been done to avoid any future security concerns, the company says that security risks on Android and other Linux-based operating systems are available.

HarmonyOS is mainly for IoT products


Huawei is targeting IoT products such as wearable devices, smart screen products, smart speakers, in-car entertainment devices and other smart products that use the new HarmonyOS. Smartphones are not really a top priority but the company stresses that it has the ability to replace Android on its mobile devices.

Huawei smartphones can switch to HarmonyOS in just a few days


Huawei revealed that if there is a need, it can quickly switch to HarmonyOS on its smartphones. It will only take 1-2 days for the company to replace Android on its phones. It is really impressive, but also very worrying.

Android applications are not compatible

Huawei's HarmonyOS will not support current Android applications. The company notes that there will be minor changes to be made to existing applications to ensure that they can run on the new OS. But Android, HTML5 and Linux applications can be transferred to HarmonyOS by using Huawei's ARK compiler because the OS uses open source.

Huawei is building its own app store


Huawei is busy building a replacement for Google CH Play store. The company's own app store is called Huawei AppGallery and it has also asked developers to publish its Android apps on it. The company even revealed Huawei Mobile Services as an alternative to Google Play services.

Huawei's Mate 30 line can use HarmonyOS

Although Huawei emphasized that HarmonyOS is not really targeted at smartphones, it may be necessary to install this new OS on the upcoming Mate 30 line. The company has confirmed that the Mate 30 models have not received Google Play certification. If the ban does not end, the company may be forced to use HarmonyOS on new phones.

HarmonyOS will go into Open Source in the next year


Huawei is planning to make HarmonyOS completely open-source OS next year. This can bring companies such as OPPO, Vivo, and Xiaomi an opportunity to cooperate and develop new operating systems from Huawei. The US ban is now a major threat to Huawei, but it can also expand to other Chinese companies. Therefore, Chinese companies will definitely want an alternative such as HarmonyOS in the worst case.

HarmonyOS will build the first foundation in China


Huawei will lay the foundation of HarmonyOS in the Chinese market first, then expand into the international markets. Therefore, the first HarmonyOS products will be released in China, starting with the Honor Vision Smart screen.

By: Kelly Jonas

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