Huawei's HarmonyOS NEXT Beta launches officially

Victor, 23 June 2024

Yes, it is finally happening. Huawei's HarmonyOS NEXT is shedding its janky Android roots. As promised at the Huawei Developer Conference (HDC) 2023, the OS's new version is a new and fresh software effort. Huawei officially launched the HarmonyOS NEXT Beta at this year's HDC 2024 conference.

Let's go through some of the basics first. HarmonyOS NEXT is not based on Android, nor is it strictly speaking a Linux system. It is based on OpenHarmony and is a microkernel-based core distributed operating system for HarmonyOS. That is to say that HarmonyOS NEXT has the HarmonyOS microkernel. It only supports native APP apps via Ark Compiler with Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) Core support. That means that the OS has no native compatibility with Android APK apps and files, as demonstrated in this post originally from Weibo.

HarmonyOS NEXT still looks and feels like a familiar mobile OS, as the UI video demonstrates. However, that is just the smartphone version, and HarmonyOS NEXT will also be running on other devices. Still, under the hood, it's a whole new architecture that Huawei promises to improve overall performance efficiency by 30%. Apparently, connectivity speed is boosted by three times, resulting in quicker connections between devices. Overall power consumption has apparently been reduced by 20%, which is a lot. We aren't quite sure what Huawei is comparing against here for these numbers, though.

Huawei's HarmonyOS NEXT Beta launches officially

As for some standout features of HarmonyOS NEXT, the OS promises a seamless unified architecture that combines local and cloud facilities. Interconnectivity is a big part of the experience. Users will be able to share content or connect applications seamlessly across devices without going through several steps and an installation process. HarmonyOS NEXT is also deeply imbued with AI. There are native features like image generation, AI sound repair and reading assistance for people with speech or vision problems.

HarmonyOS NEXT also promises to be a multimedia powerhouse with support for Ark Multimedia Engine, Ark Graphics Engine, and FFRT. That last tech apparently brings the promise of PC-level ray tracing for games.

Huawei's HarmonyOS NEXT Beta launches officially

For now, the HarmonyOS NEXT Beta is a China-only experience. We aren't quite sure what Huawei's plans are for the future of the OS. But it all seems very ambitious.

Source 1 | Source 2


Reader comments

It already works well, but if it goes globally to other phones, how do they think they will solve applications that will not be compatible with Android, Instagram, Viber Telegram, WhatsApp, that is the most used globally

Maybe now apple fanboys will stop addressing to non-iphones as "androids"

The comments on GSM Arena are predictable, always eye poking and scratching like jealous girlfriends and immature adolescents. Here constructive differences are absent it's like a hawk waiting for foul to leave nest and eat the foul whereas a sm...

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