Finally, some good news for Honor and Huawei smartphone users! Old smartphone users are likely to support full core Android OS experience, including a few features from the Google app store.
After Google suspended its business activities with Huawei this week, the brand was restricted from conducting the non-public transfer of software, hardware, and other technical services.
Resultantly, future launches might deliver a limited Android experience, but the users won’t lose all access to Android since it’s an open source project. Old Huawei phones are already certified under VTS (Vendor Test Suite) and CTS (Compatibility Test Suite), which means Google can authorize them to install new updates from Play store via side-loading, without involving Huawei in the loop.
The downside however is, existing users might experience difficulties in running pre-installed GMS (Google Mobile Services), including Gmail, Google Maps, Virtual Assistant and other tools that use third-party apps (like YouTube) that access Google functions. Social media apps that usually tap into Google APIs could lose some functions due to restricted access.
Unless the US’s Bureau of Industry and Security issues a license to Google to maintain its trade relations with the third largest smartphone manufacturing company of the world, all users will be deprived of installing the security patches. The reason being, Google gives Android developers the access to their security code, at least one month before the scheduled release.
Thus, manufacturers have ample time to fix any bugs before they put up security updates in the market for installation. This time, Huawei will get access to the patches on the same day, that is the scheduled date of release, meaning they can’t test them before distribution. In other words, Huawei devices may be susceptible to security breaches, until the patches run without errors.
It will negatively impact Huawei’s reputation in the market, as they can’t sell future products with an Android label. Alternatively, the brand is planning to work on its own operating system to overcome this issue, as informed by one of the spokespersons. Unfortunately, we don’t see it coming anytime sooner.
While the products set to be released in 2019 will work on Android Q, Huawei needs to come up with a backup plan soon, before the launch of Android R in 2020, to out-beat Samsung and Apple.