Huawei has been going through a lot. After the company was blacklisted by the U.S. government, Google announced it will stop doing business with the phone maker, meaning it will no longer be able to supply Google’s vital Play Services and future Android updates with its future phones. That’s a massive deal for Huawei, as it would mean the company’s phones will lose access to the millions of apps on the Play Store and software updates for its phones.
Last month, of course, the U.S. government once again started allowing Huawei to do business with U.S. companies.
Sign up for our new free newsletter to get three time-saving tips each Friday — and get free copies of Paul Thurrott's Windows 11 and Windows 10 Field Guides (normally $9.99) as a special welcome gift!
"*" indicates required fields
There was, however, a really interesting discussion when Huawei was getting backlisted by all the companies, especially Google. Losing access to Android’s vital parts would significantly hurt the company’s growing phone business, and so there were lots of talks about an alternative OS the company has been working on. Multiple reports discussed Huawei’s “alternative” OS to Android which the company could use instead of Android if it had been blocked from using Android indefinitely.
But as it turns out, the OS that’s being developed by Huawei isn’t meant to be an alternative to Android. Chinese blog Xinhua reports that Hauwei’s SVP and board member, Catherine Chen, discussed the company’s homegrown operating system in a recent meeting. Apparently, the new OS–called Hongmeng–is designed for industrial use, and not as an alternative to Android for phones. The OS has even been in development for a while, with Chen claiming that the OS is much more secure and offers extremely low latency compared to a smartphone OS.
Huawei’s homegrown OS is still very interesting, mainly because of the fact that the company isn’t actually working on an alternative to Android. Although the situation with the trade battle between the U.S. and China has calmed down a bit recently, it still doesn’t eliminate the chances of any future events where the company could once again find itself in a big mess that’s almost completely out of its own control.
<p>“Not for consumer use” is basically corporate speak for “we haven’t figured out how to get consumers to want it yet.”</p><p><br></p><p>(See Google Glass, Hololens, etc.)</p><p><br></p><p><br></p>
<blockquote><em><a href="#443804">In reply to BrianEricFord:</a></em></blockquote><p>Well, this is an OS, not a device like the examples you gave. IMO more choices in industrial OS's can only be a positive thing. </p>
<blockquote><em><a href="#443895">In reply to wright_is:</a></em></blockquote><p>I guess just about everything is expected to be Linux-based these days, but there's nothing about Linux that particularly lends itself to real-time applications, IMO. </p><p><br></p><p>Then again "hard" real-time software doesn't seem to be very common these days perhaps because specialized hardware is handling some of the burden. Although real-time systems are often fast, it's really the ability to perform actions within a particular time window that is key. In many systems being early is no better than being late. </p><p><br></p><p>My favorite everyday example of a real-time system is the rotating light game you might see at Chuck E. Cheese or an arcade. Lights are arranged in a circle and by lighting them and turning them off sequentially around the circle it appears that the light is moving. The player has a button in front of them that is supposed to be activated at the exact time the light appears directly in front of the button. Press the button too early or too late and the player will lose. This illustrates that in the general case, real-time "bugs" can't be solved by merely increasing the processor speed. </p>