HarmonyOS NEXT Relies Less on APKs and Instead, is now a Standalone Operating System

Three Operating Systems competing now. Let’s see how Huawei would sweep the competition.

During the Huawei Developers’ Conference 2023, the company unveiled a revamped HarmonyOS, HarmonyOS Next. This new version cements Huawei’s central idea of creating an independent operating system with little to no reliance on Android and APK files. It might as well be the fate of newer Huawei phones as well as those that are upgradeable, like the P and Mate series.

To help familiarize app builders, HarmonyOS NEXT was introduced as a testing site for developers, making them more familiar with how this new OS works and making their apps optimized for Huawei phones. It uses a library called .HAP and the consumer version, which is part of the Android Open Source Project, can open both APK and HAP libraries.

The main reason why Huawei opted to rely first on Android is to make consumers familiar with it. It is basically EMUI without Google Services but having the option to unpack APK files makes learning this new OS less of a hassle. The new OS also lacks developers so it’s safer to build a framework from an established source.

The Developer Build is available for corporate developers this month while it will be open for all developers by 2024. Can Huawei really rely less on Android, or is this another Windows Phone situation? So as long Huawei plays their cards right, HarmonyOS can become competitive in the mundane world of iOS and Android.

Source: Huawei Central