Since Huawei cannot use Google Mobile Services (GMS) anymore, it turned its attention to creating their ecosystem of apps – Huawei Mobile Services (HMS). The HMS is not just an ecosystem of apps, but it is also a cloud service and a developer community. We will talk about it more in the following lines.
The Birth of Huawei Mobile Services
Before we go into what HMS is and what it means, we need to understand how HMS came into existence.
As most folks know by this time, Huawei is one of the biggest trade war victims between the USA and China. Consequently, Huawei was not allowed to do any business with most US companies. Unfortunately for them, they could not do any business even with Google that by then was one of their most important partners within the USA.
Considering the circumstances, Huawei could not launch any new smartphones using Google Mobile Services (GMS). This is important because GMS is the key to a wide range of essential Android apps, APIs, and cloud services, including YouTube, Google Drive, Google Photos, Google Play Store, and more.
The lack of GMS didn’t mean just missing out only on essential Google services and products but also losing access to many other popular apps like Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and others. Plus, every other app that used the Google infrastructure via Google’s GMS.
Because of that, Huawei decided to create its platform – Huawei Mobile Services (HMS).
Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) 101
The HMS is designed to replace Google services and apps such as Google Maps, Gmail, Google Cloud Storage, and others, on Huawei and Honor devices such as smartphones, tablets, and smartwatches.
Furthermore, HMS brings a set of services and tools to third-party developers to develop their apps. The HMS Core is essential for third-party developers as it gives them access to various SDKs, APIs, and other tools and services. Once they develop their apps, developers can distribute them through the Huawei AppGallery.
HMS is not a new thing, but Huawei decided to re-introduce and expand the platform because of its US ban, making them lose access to GMS.
Huawei Mobile Services in 2020
The list of services and apps that are part of the HMS in 2020 includes Huawei AppGallery, Huawei Video, Huawei Audiokit, Huawei Mobile Cloud, Huawei Assistant, Huawei Browser, and many more.
Currently, HMS is available in over 170 countries and regions. According to Huawei, in March 2020, Huawei Mobile Services recorded over 650 million active users from all over the world.
In terms of downloads, the Huawei Browser so far has been downloaded over 200 million times, the Huawei Cloud more than 160 million times, Huawei Music over 150 million times, and the Huawei Assistant over 140 million times.
Huawei also reveals that their AppGallery has more than 400 million monthly active users worldwide. The number of apps available in the AppGallery is well over 50,000, whereas the number of accumulated downloads in the AppGallery has reached 180 billion.
Huawei Mobile Services is an expanding ecosystem of apps and services. Its popularity is growing as more developers use it to develop new apps and improve their old ones. The only significant question is their pace and whether it can be more innovative than Google and Apple.