ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronEye IconIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailMenu BurgerPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon SearchSite TitleTitle ChevronIcon Twitter
China tech

Huawei's Harmony 'could become fifth-largest mobile OS by 2020'

Trade talks progress means Google services might return to Huawei devices

Richard Yu, head of Huawei's consumer business group, unveils HarmonyOS at the company's developer conference in Dongguan in August 2019.    © Reuters

BEIJING -- Huawei's in-house operating system, HarmonyOS, is set to surpass Linux to become the world's fifth most popular operating system for smart digital devices by the end of 2020, according to Counterpoint Research's latest report.

The Chinese-developed operating system is predicted to hold 2% of market share globally and 5% domestically by December next year, the report said.

Officially launched by tech group Huawei in August, the open-source software is designed to integrate with almost every kind of smart device, from smartphones and wearables to cars. Two of Huawei's new televisions are installed with HarmonyOS.

The development of a homegrown operating system is part of Huawei's effort to enrich its ecosystem and reduce reliance on foreign technology, such as the Android operating system from its long-time partner Google.

Currently, Android is the world's No. 1 operating system, claiming more than 40% of market share, followed by Microsoft's Windows with 35%, Apple's iOS with 14% and macOS with 6%. Linux ranks fifth with a 0.8% share, data from web analytics service StatCounter reveals.

In Western markets, Huawei is still reeling from the ongoing U.S.-China trade spat and bans on American companies from selling technologies to the Chinese company.

Its newly-released flagship smartphone, the Mate 30, comes without Google apps such as the Google Play Store, Chrome and Gmail, since the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump placed Huawei and dozens of its affiliates on a list of banned entities in May.

Although Huawei's global smartphone shipments grew 4.6% year-on-year in the second quarter of 2019, the U.S. sanctions will lead to a steep decline in its shipments in the third quarter as overseas buyers might avoid buying its handsets, industry observers believe.

However, there is speculation that Google services might soon be restored to Huawei devices, as the U.S. announced a temporary truce Friday after Washington and Beijing wrapped up their latest round of trade talks.

President Trump gave the green light to begin issuing licenses allowing some American companies to supply non-sensitive goods to Huawei, The New York Times reported, citing people familiar with the situation.

KrASIA is a digital media company focused on technology-driven businesses and trends across the Asia-Pacific region. It is part of 36Kr, a tech news portal based in Beijing. Nikkei has a minority stake in 36Kr.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Get Unlimited access

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends October 31st

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to the Nikkei Asian Review has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media