Gov’t, industry support cited as critical factors
Huawei Technologies’ attempts to float its own smartphone Operating System will face significant hurdles, according to industry sources cited by the global media.
It’s not because the system itself is difficult to create, but because the Chinese company would face various challenges in creating a whole new eco-system, reported Japan’s Nikkei Asian Review and CNBC of the US.
“Firstly, Huawei will need to make its own software have a user experience that can match Google and have the versatility of collection of apps,” according to Neil Shah, a research director, at Counterpoint Research.
“Secondly, making apps secure will be key. Ensuring security of apps is paramount which involves scanning and certification of apps for the store which is a humongous task and could be challenging and resource intensive. The last thing Huawei would want is privacy or security issues plaguing the offering,” he told CNBC.
Microsoft had cited a lack of developers when it folded plans for the Window-fun running on its own OS. The same goes for other global smartphone makers like Nokia and Blackberry.
Huawei, which has been working on its own OS since 2012, was thrown into the spotlight following the US government’s decision in May to place the Chinese smartphone maker in its Entity List, making it nearly impossible for Huawei to survive since companies are discouraged from doing business with Entity List firms.
Huawei has managed to get a 90-day grace period until Aug.19, but companies like Google has said it would sever ties. The Chinese tech firm is now saying that once the support gets cut off completely, it would be forced to domestically launch its own OS by the end of the fourth quarter, aiming for global release within the first two quarters of next year.
The international version is dubbed Ark OS, while the domestic version is known as Hongmeng. Last month, it was reported that the tech company has filed a patent for Ark with the German Patent & Trademark Office.
Some argue that Huawei could succeed on the power of the masses, coupled with government and industry support.
Tech media SlashGear said there would be two prerequisites. The first would be for Huawei, currently the world’s No.2 smartphone maker with a 34% market share, to raise the stake to above 50% by the year’s end. The second would be for the Beijing government to step in to encourage Chinese tech firms to use the Huawei OS.
Shah added that the OS could stand a chance if the Chinese tech companies come together to create a unified OS, instead of Huawei going off alone.