Huawei Mobile has been developing its own mobile Os for a number of years now, and Chinese media reports say it is called HongMeng OS. If it will sell outside China, however, a name like Kirin OS sounds better. But another remoured name, Ark OS, is perfect.

Nobody outside of Huawei seems to have any information about the operating system, and that is amazing for a platform that has been in development for upwards of 3 years. That level of secrecy is gangster.

Huawei HongMeng OS or Kirin OS or Ark OS
Reports say Huawei’s mobile OS is called HongMeng OS. If it will sell outside China, a name like Kirin OS or Ark OS sounds better.

A GlobalTimes tweet says HongMeng OS is already being trialled and will “gradually replace the Android system”. The tweet says their sources are three Chinese media outfits but does not provide names.

Huawei’s own-developed smart phone Operating System, reportedly named “HongMeng OS”, is being trialled out and will gradually replace the Android system, according to three Chinese media reports.

— Global Times (@globaltimesnews) May 20, 2019

So, for the first time, we have a name for Huawei’s smartphone platform. HongMeng OS. It isn’t official, so there is no way we can be 100% sure of this. Yet, methinks it is good to have a name to call it.

HongMeng OS or Kirin OS? Or wait, Ark OS!

In my opinion, HongMeng OS might just be an internal name used for the platform. But if it isn’t, there is this problem of global adoption. I am sure that HongMeng must sound great to the Chinese, but if they want to see that platform go around the world, they need a name that reduces the risk of us biting our tongues while pronouncing it.

How about Kirin OS? Or Nutmeg OS? Kidding. But it does sound similar to HongMeng; doesn’t it? I am suggesting Kirin because we are already familiar with Huawei’s chip manufacturing subsidiary, HiSilicon Kirin. Huawei smartphones use Kirin processors. That familiar name will help.

Or, to be honest, Huawei can just call it EMUI OS, for even better continuity. We already know their custom Android skin as EMUI. And with over 470 million daily active users who are already familiar with it, why not?

Update: Reports from Chinese and International media say that Huawei has filed for Ark OS in various countries, suggesting that this will be the name of the platform outside China.

Whatever it is called, it will be nice to get one’s hands on a device running the new software and give it a spin.

Huawei HongMeng OS trials

All hail HongMeng OS

Personally, I am all for this. The world needs fallback systems and platforms. The current duopoly in the smartphone world is a recipe for disaster.

I rooted for Tizen OS, which sadly has not gained traction. I am unapologetically rooting for HongMeng OS (hey, can some of us start calling it Ark OS?) to succeed. Succeeding inside China will not be a problem. The big challenge will be how to pull off success elsewhere in the world. But we do say that things look impossible till they are done.

Huawei founder’s response to the whole situation is one that I like. Ren has been reported to have said that the US is “understimating Huawei’s capabilities”. Bring it on. The smartphone world needs this.

There are a handful of niche alternative mobile OS developments going on around the world. Perhaps my favourite one among them is e-Foundation, which already has a functional operating system that can be installed on 75 different smartphones at the moment. It is an intriguing initiative and I believe it needs to scale.

e-mobile, an alternative to Google software and services

Meanwhile, Sailfish OS has gone rather quiet of recent, not having gained traction in the public space. In 2016, it got adopted by the Russian government as an alternative OS to Android.

The truth is that there is convincing proof that quite a number of people in the world want alternatives to Apple and Google’s systems. Whether or not they will get it is a different question. Huawei’s HongMeng OS (or Kirin OS or Ark OS) is another chance to make it happen.

Tradename Filings

June 2019: Huawei filed to trademark the name, HongMeng OS, in a number of countries, including: Australia, Canada, Cambodia, the European Union, Indonesia, India, Mexico, Spain, Switzerland and Thailand [3].

2022 Update: Huawei eventually gave their mobile OS the name, HarmonyOS, and it is now on version 3.0 from July 27, 2022.


  1. GlobalTimes on Twitter.
  2. WCCFTECH: Huawei’s Own Smartphone Operating System Reportedly Named HongMeng OS, According to Foreign Sources.
  3. WIPO Global Brand Database.

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By Mister Mobility

Tech blogging since 2003, I have owned and reviewed hundreds of smartphones running EPOC, Symbian, Palm, PocketPC, Windows Mobile, BlackBerry, BB10, webOS, Windows Phone, Firefox, Ubuntu Touch, Android, iOS, and KaiOS operating systems.

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