Huawei has finally ditched Android’s Wear OS, Google’s Android Operating System for smartwears, and has opted for its own proprietary software LiteOS. This comes as Huawei launches its latest smartwatch, the Huawei Watch GT.
You would recall that Huawei’s previous generations of smartwatches had relied on the Android’s operating system, Wear OS. The decision to ditch Wear OS may not be connected with Android Wear OS’ poor competition with industry leaders like Apple and Fitbit. Huawei had earlier said, the decision was in part ,to maximize battery life of its watches. This, it claims, that the battery life of the new Watch GT can last up to two weeks if users keep heart rate monitoring on and exercise for up to 90 minutes per week. Android’s Wear OS on the other hand, currently accounts for only about 10% of all smartwaches sales, according to reports.
Huawei LiteOS operating system, just like Google’s Android Wear, is an open source API that can be used for not only smart watches, but also on smart homes, wearables, internet of vehicles and for intelligent manufacturing.
Huawei LiteOS is an IoT-oriented software platform integrating an IoT operating system and middleware. It is lightweight, with a kernel size of under 10 KB, and consumes very little power — it can run on an AA battery for up to five years! It also allows for fast startup and connectivity and is very secure.
Huawei LiteOS provides a unified open-source API that can be used in IoT domains as diverse as smart homes, wearables, Internet of Vehicles (IoV), and intelligent manufacturing.
Android Wear is a version of Google’s Android Operating System (OS) designed for smartwatches and other wearable. The Operating System works by interfacing with a mobile phone running Android 4.3 or newer, or on the iOS 8.2 or newer.
After its first version Android Wear 4.4W1, released in June 2014 and named after the Android base version it supports, Android Wear has grown and upgraded into eight versions, with Android Wear 2.0 its latest and released February, 2017. In the first six months of availability, it was estimated that over 720,000 Android Wear smartwatches had been shipped, while as at January 2016, Android Wear had between one and five million application installations. In 2015, an estimated 10% of the smartwatch market was held by Androi Wear.
Android Wear 2.0 also integrates the Google Now technology and mobile notifications into a smartwatch form factor. It also adds the ability to download applications from the Google Play Store
Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. is a Chinese multinational networking and telecommunication equipment and services company headquartered in Shenzhen, China. It is the largest telecommunications equipment manufacturer in the world, having overtaken Ericsson in 2012.
Huawei was founded in 1987 by Ren Zhengfei, a former engineer. At the time of its establishment, Huawei focused on manufacturing phone switches, but has since expanded its business to include building telecommunications networks, providing operational and consulting services and equipment to enterprises inside and outside of China, and manufacturing communications devices for the consumer market. As of the end of 2014, Huawei’s products and services are available in more than 170 countries, and are used by a third of the world’s population, ranking third in the world in mobile phone shipments in 2015