Huawei is working on its own Gmail alternative

(Image credit: Internet)

Chinese smartphone manufacturer Huawei is reportedly testing a new email service (opens in new tab) as it expands its suite of software that mirrors equivalents found on Android (opens in new tab).

The recent US sanctions have given Huawei the perfect excuse to build its own alternative mobile ecosystem, akin to Android, complete with its own mobile operating system, Harmony OS (opens in new tab).

According to reports, Huawei is now taking registrations and soliciting feedback on its new email service, dubbed Petal Mail. 

Gmail alternative

Petal mail is the latest addition to Huawei’s steadily growing selection of software and services. The US trade sanctions prevent the smartphone giant from giving its users the complete Android experience. To overcome this limitation, the company has been working to replace the Android apps (opens in new tab) with homebrewed equivalents.

Reportedly, the company has already launched replacements for Google Mobile Services (called Huawei Mobile Services), as well as alternatives to the Play Store (AppGallery) and Google Maps (Petal Maps). Notably, the firm has applied for a handful of other Petal-prefixed trademarks too.

There aren’t very many details available about Petal Mail, though the service is reportedly in the early stages of rollout, as suggested by screenshots showing a very minimal two-column interface.

Interestingly, Huawei has also released a new virtual currency (opens in new tab) called Petals. While the company's intentions behind the new currency are unclear, it is currently valued at CNY0.01 (~$0.0015). 

Via XDA-Developers (opens in new tab)

Mayank Sharma

With almost two decades of writing and reporting on Linux, Mayank Sharma would like everyone to think he’s TechRadar Pro’s expert on the topic. Of course, he’s just as interested in other computing topics, particularly cybersecurity, cloud, containers, and coding.