Huawei launches HMS, its alternative to Google Play services, as beta in China


While the ban of the United States to Huawei lasts, the company cannot include in its new devices neither hardware nor software of companies of the American country. This includes Google services and apps, although Huawei has been preparing its replacement for some time. Its own services under the name of HMS or Huawei Mobile Services has become now available in beta version in China.

HMS is a package of tools ready to reuse by developers in a similar way to what they do with Google services. And they are one of the cornerstones of HarmonyOS and Android’s own flavors without Google such as the EMUI 10 installed in new devices like the Huawei Mate 30. With the launch of HMS beta version, the real testing of this alternative to Google services begins.

Developers can now try Huawei Mobile Services

Huawei has had to make many adjustments during 2019 to get out of the way after its inclusion in the list of entities of the US government. From changing suppliers for hardware to “recycle” models already certified to launch them under another name. Such as Huawei Nova 5T. They are sufficient in the short term, but not in the long term. The company has been forced to practice self-reliance to secure its future.

This self-sufficiency is also necessary in the software, having to use an Android version without anything from Google. The problem is not so much that the mobile comes without Gmail, Google Maps or YouTube preinstalled. But that Google Services is missing, a collection of APIs to perform various tasks such as geolocation. Alongside with login, payments, real-time notifications or show ads.

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Developers can use Google services to take advantage of these functions. Without having to rewrite them from scratch or incorporate them into their application code. But under the assumption that the mobile will have them installed. If not, applications stop working unless they are prepared to use an alternative.

HMS will boost the ecosystem of the Chinese giant

This is precisely what Huawei is building in the form of its Huawei Mobile Services or HMS. An alternative to Google services that was born as an extension and concentration of the different services that the company already had. Huawei already had its user accounts, payment system and even an app store. Being prepared to work without Google in the Chinese market. But the challenge is now to do the same globally.

Adapting an application to use Huawei services instead of Google is an expensive process. In an interview with The Economic Times, the CEO of Huawei and Honor in India has claimed to be working with the 150 top applications in the country to include HMS support. For this they have allocated an investment of 1 billion dollars. And will offer incentives of up to 17,000 dollars to integrate HMS.

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