HarmonyOS: How Huawei Is Trying to Trade War-Proof Its Software

HarmonyOS: How Huawei Is Trying to Trade War-Proof Its Software

Highlights
  • HarmonyOS is a new operating system that may find its way to Smart TVs
  • Huawei’s efforts actually mirrors Apple
  • iThis comes in the wake of international trade disputes

Huawei Technologies on Friday offered the first glimpse of an in-house software that may someday replace Google’s Android, an important step toward reducing its reliance on American technology.

“HarmonyOS,” previously code-named “Hongmeng,” is a long-gestating operating system that could soon find its way into smart TVs and lower-end phones. The OS embodies Huawei’s shift toward self-reliance as American sanctions cut it off from vital technology, and escalating U.S.-Chinese tariffs jeopardize a carefully orchestrated global supply chain. Huawei’s efforts actually mirror Apple to develop vertically-integrated supply and production lines that help reduce exposure to inclement market forces, unreliable suppliers and unpredictable events like international trade disputes.

The newly hostile environment is putting to the test not just Apple’s “Designed in California, Assembled in China” slogan, but the overall preparedness of two smartphone-making giants as the decades-old made-in-China model fractures. Here’s a look at how dependent Apple and Huawei are on external suppliers.