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HUAWEI says HongMeng OS is not for phones (so what is it for?)

A HUAWEI executive has claimed that its HongMeng OS was never meant for smartphones in the first place.

Published onJuly 19, 2019

Don't expect HongMeng OS to run on HUAWEI phones, like the HUAWEI P30 seen here.

We’ve heard all about HUAWEI’s HongMeng or Oak OS in recent months, purportedly positioned as a Plan B should the company’s access to Android be affected. Now, the Chinese manufacturer has claimed that the in-house platform isn’t for smartphones after all.

According to the state-owned Xinhua outlet, Huawei senior vice-president Catherine Chen said HongMeng OS was for industrial use and that it aims to keep using Android for smartphones. This is a marked departure from previous media coverage, which suggested that HongMeng was an alternative to Android.

The executive said the platform had been in development long before recent talks about an Android alternative kicked off. In fact, news of a home-grown operating system by HUAWEI dates back to 2012.

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HUAWEI P30 back 1

Chen added that while a mobile platform usually contains millions of lines of code, HongMeng had “hundreds of thousands” of lines and was more secure. The executive said the in-house platform also had extremely low latency compared to a mobile operating system.

Chen’s statement comes after HUAWEI executives previously confirmed they were working on an alternative mobile operating system. The latest comments suggest that HUAWEI either changed its mind regarding HongMeng’s use in the smartphone arena, or that another plan B mobile platform is in the works.

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