Meet HarmonyOS, Huawei’s alternative to Google’s Android operating system

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At the Huawei Developer Conference, Huawei introduces to the world HarmonyOS which the company has described as "a new microkernel-based, distributed operating system created to deliver a cohesive user experience across all devices and scenarios".

CEO Richard Yu said the new operating system could be used in phones, computers, tablets and wearable devices such as smartwatches. According to him, the new system is "completely different from Android and iOS", and will be launched later this year on Huawei smart screen products.

While the future of the company with respect to the United States is still uncertain, Harmony OS is a way for the company to hedge its position in case things take a turn for the worse. Including such a feature could be to ensure that users don't face any issues when switching over from Android to Harmony or it it's a just that Huawei is learning from Microsoft's smartphone experience.

The restrictions were later eased, including 90-day licenses for companies to continue working with Huawei, as well as further permission from US President Donald Trump to sell some equipment. "They will all be able to run on our OS in the future", Yu says.

At the announcement, it was also revealed that Harmony OS would not allow for root access which is a security threat for any device running Android.

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Huawei can switch to Harmony OS in about 2 days if need be, but the company has decided on sticking to Android OS for now, keeping the interests of its existing hardware partners in mind.

The OS is a "microkernel-based, distributed OS for all scenarios", making arguably more secure and reliable than Android, and will incorporate a "Deterministic Latency Engine" to rejig system resources based on where they're needed.

It's looking like that phone will be the Mate 30 Lite, with Huawei rumored to be prepping an Android version for Europe and global markets and another for the Chinese market.

Clearly a thinly veiled response to political events over the a year ago, the message is clear - if Huawei needs to ditch Android, down the line, it can.

Huawei's new OS will be replacing the company's use of Android.

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