Chinese mobile giants like Huawei aren't having much success getting their devices out to the masses in North America, due partly to increased scrutiny from the US government. It turns out that Huawei might have a plan B ready, just in case it gets abandoned by Google and Android as well.
The South China Morning Post reports that Huawei is working on its own mobile operating system, intended to be ready to go should the friction between the US authorities and the company get even worse.
Both Huawei and ZTE have been declared threats to national security by the US government, though as yet no solid evidence has been made public to back up the claims. As a result, the Chinese firms are finding it hard to do business with carriers and retailers in the States... and Google might conceivably be next.
Not for the foreseeable
In fact, Huawei has been working on the OS and something similar for desktops and tablets since 2012, the Post reports. As it's not yet up to the same standard as Android however, the software has remained in-house. If trade and security tensions rise further, Huawei wants a backup plan, insider sources say.
When asked for comment by the Post, Huawei said it "has no plans to release its own OS in the foreseeable future", adding: "We focus on products powered by Android OS and adopt an open attitude towards mobile OS."
Google's core services are blocked in China right now anyway, but a Huawei OS would lose access to both these services and the huge library of Android apps that have been built up over the years. Still, the company might have no other option if it gets the boot from Google other than to go it alone.