Huawei to launch HarmonyOS for smartphones next week

The Chinese tech giant will switch to its homegrown OS as it looks to fully abandon Android by October

Huawei's long-awaited Harmony operating system, also known as HongmengOS, will be officially unveiled next week.

The event, known as the "Hongmeng operating system and Huawei's full-scene new product launch conference", is scheduled to take place on 2 June at 8 pm China Standard Time, with the second version of the operating system, Harmony 2.0, expected to become publicly available from that date onwards.

News of the event first circulated after a promotional poster for the launch event was obtained by a Huawei fan account on Weibo and posted to the Chinese social media platform, which boasts 521 million monthly active users. However, the tech giant confirmed the event details shortly after, posting an English language version of the poster onto Twitter.

The 2 June launch date comes four months prior to Huawei's complete shift away from Android, which the company is planning to abandon by October of this year. The decision had been imposed due to the Chinese tech giant being barred from offering apps and services from American companies, including Google, on its latest devices.

HarmonyOS has been tested on devices since December last year and has been in the works for over a decade. The original version of the operating system had been intended for Internet of Things (IoT) devices such as TVs, smartwatches, and smart home tech but, due to Huawei's strained relations with the US government, it's now being expanded to smartphones. 

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With the tech giant struggling due to US sanctions installed by the Trump administration and extended by President Joe Biden, Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei has called on the company to "dare to lead the world" in software development and exclude the US from the rest of the world.

The leaked promotional poster for the launch event comes just a day after it was reported that an internal memo sent from Zhengfei to employees revealed that Huawei will switch its focus on hardware for software development, as the sector is "outside of US control" and will provide the company with "greater independence and autonomy".

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