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Harmony OS a new approach to the computing ecosystem

by Amal Varghese

At the Huawei Developer Conference in Dongguan, China, Huawei finally unveils its most awaited first party operating system, ‘Harmony OS’. After being under development for several years, Huawei finally releases the OS shortly after US enacted trade ban on the Chinese company.

Harmony OS is a microkernel-based OS, which is by far similar to Google’s in-house Fuchsia, an alleged successor of Android. However, Huawei claims that their OS is considerably dissimilar to Fuchsia as Harmony OS uses a “non-distributed design”. This design allows a flexible incorporation of the new OS to various device.

Harmony OS
launch of Harmony OS at Dongguan, China _ Pic Credit: xda-developers

What exactly is Harmony OS?

In short, Huawei’s Harmony OS is a multi-kernel based distributed OS. An OS that can run on multiple devices from a smartphone to wearables, television to computers, vehicles to speakers by a creating a cloud based shared ecosystem.

When will Harmony OS roll out?

Huawei has planned to launch the OS on various platform over a period of three years. As of now they are expected to launch the OS on smart-screen products by the end of 2020. The first of these platform will be the Honor Smart Screen, which is to be released on Saturday. Huawei is yet to explain what exactly is the range of smart-screen device. The primary focus of Huawei is evidently the Chinese market and eventually to subject on to the global platform.

Richard Yu, the CEO of Huawei’s consumer business group stated that Harmony OS is “completely different from Android and iOS” because of its ability to adapt across multiple platforms. “You can develop your apps once, then flexibly deploy them across a range of different devices,” he adds.

Though the OS is set to make a separate benchmark for itself in the upcoming three years, the company stated that “for the time being” it intends to continue using Android on smartphones. This was also seconded by several tech-youtubers. But according to CNBC’s report, Yu stated that it is still unclear whether Huawei can still continue with Android and is waiting for an updated. This is probably because of the new tension developed between the Chinese and US government.

Mrwhosetheboss explaining about Harmony OS

Is Harmony OS expensive?

Well, to answer this, the OS is absolutely free, provided you have the device, and as far as the Huawei phones matter, they are usually priced at a lower figure. As of now the capacity of a Harmony OS running smartphone is unknown and may take some time to launch in China, other countries will have to patiently to experience this.

Can Harmony OS make a difference?

Even after getting a stronger blow from the US, Huawei still continues to be the number one company in China. With a substantial thirty six percent of Chinese tech-industry. If the Operating System is well accepted in the Asian market, it would tempt other Chinese smartphone makers to opt the OS. If Oppo and Xiaomi jointly release phones with the Huawei OS, it would however change the concept of smartphones.

Tech Support

As of now, the OS will not be compatible with Android or Android apps out-of-the-box, this will not allow its users to merely install any Android app of their choice. Mr Yu adds, “the developers will have to make some small changes” to make their app run on Harmony OS. He also states that it is very easy to transfer Android apps to their OS.

The future

Huawei claims that their operating system represents a new generation, a new approach of how balanced electronic devices on a single system would be the future. The Artificial Intelligence capability might be significantly high compared to any other Operating System. This line of OS would definitely challenge the famous Apple ecosystem.

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