Huawei Has Made Its Own Smartphone and PC OSes … Just in Case

Posted on March 14, 2019 by Paul Thurrott in Android, Mobile, Windows 10 with 47 Comments

Huawei admitted this week that it has developed its own smartphone and PC operating systems as an emergency measure. The telecommunications giant is worried that relations with the U.S. will degrade so badly that it might be forced to stop using Android and Windows.

“We have prepared our own operating systems, if it turns out we can no longer use these systems, we will be ready and have our plan B,” Huawei mobile chief Richard Yu Chengdong told Die Welt, a Germany-based newspaper. This admission follows earlier rumors that Huawei had been working on its own operating systems since at least early 2018.

“Huawei does have backup systems but only for use in extenuating circumstances,” Huawei confirmed to the South China Morning Post. “We don’t expect to use them, and to be honest, we don’t want to use them. We fully support our partners’ operating systems – we love using them and our customers love using them. Android and Windows will always remain our first choices.”

The impetus for this work was a previous U.S. ban on ZTE, another China-based telecommunications giant. And of course Huawei has been under fire by the U.S. government ever since: The firm finally sued the U.S. government for its baseless accusations and charges last week.

The big question here, of course, is compatibility. It’s not enough to create alternatives to both Android and Windows; those systems must run the applications and services that are designed for those systems too. But there’s no word in today’s report about how the firm expects to accomplish that.

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