China’s Huawei is reportedly intensively testing its proprietary operating system (OS) HongMeng with internet giants and domestic smartphone vendors, and the new system will be launched in the next few months.
Technology companies like Tencent have teamed up with employees of Huawei who are in charge of EMUI, a custom mobile OS based on Android that Huawei uses on most Huawei and Honor-branded smartphones to test the new HongMeng OS, according to media reports.
Smartphone vendors such as OPPO and VIVO have also sent teams to test the new system, which was shown as being 60 percent faster than the Android system.
Huawei has been accelerating the launch of HongMeng OS as part of its broader effort amid a US government crackdown. Google partly blocked its Android system from Huawei following the US government’s export control order, which is weighing on the company’s smartphone business in overseas markets.
When asked about when the HongMeng OS will be officially launched, Shao Yang, the chief strategy officer of Huawei’s business consumer group, said “that’s a secret.”
Some industry analysts believe that the upcoming Huawei P40 will be equipped with the HongMeng OS, while industry news site gsmarena.com reported on Tuesday that Huawei has managed to ship 1 million smartphones with its own OS. It is not known if they are actual market-available phones.
Industry analysts also warned that Google’s supply cut to Huawei might hurt the Chinese company in the short term, but it would force the company to reduce reliance on foreign technology giants like Google and reshape the software market dominated by US companies.
Google is now lobbying for an Android exemption from the Huawei ban, arguing that the ban on Huawei will raise national security risks to the US.
A source close to a major Chinese carrier told the Global Times that major technology companies are actively working with Huawei to push forward the release of HongMeng OS, which is also considered as a major blow to the US-led crackdown.
Xiaomi said it had no further details to share when contacted by the Global Times to discuss this matter. Tencent said it would not comment on the issue.