Since May 2019, the US banned American companies from cooperating with Huawei. With this ban in place, Huawei can not use Google’s GMS. This has a significant impact on Huawei’s foreign markets, especially the European market. A few days ago, the company officially announced that its first 5G smartphone with Huawei HMS (Huawei Mobile Service) will arrive in Europe on February 24th. This will also be one of the few non-GMS Android smartphones to enter the European market.
Huawei HMS wants to be the new “first”
Honor President Zhao Ming said in an interview that Huawei and Honor are working hard to make HMS mobile services the new first. This suggests that Huawei HMS hopes to overtake Google’s GMS. Considering the current distance between GMS and HMS, this could just be a pipe dream.
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However, the original text did not mention what Zhao Ming meant by “first”. Does it refer to the largest number of users, the largest number of applications and services, or the largest number of developers?
On January 1st, Huawei’s CEO, Yu Chengdong, also emphasized that in 2020, Huawei will fully build the HMS ecosystem. Huawei executives in Europe even said in an interview that even if the US lifts restrictions, Huawei will not use Google GMS services in the future.
GMS is an indispensable “curse” for global Android phones (except the Chinese market). It is also the key to Google’s control of the Android market while the Android system remains free and open-source. Before the US government started ditching out bans, no one thought of an alternative to GMS.
As of now, Huawei’s AppGallery has more than 400 million monthly active users as well as 55,000 APPs. This is a very far cry from what Google’s GMS is currently offering. If Huawei hopes to overtake Google’s GMS then it needs nothing short of consistent hard work for several years.