Huawei sees uptick in local usage of app gallery

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With 2.8 million monthly active users in SA to date, Huawei has expanded its catalogue of local apps available from its app store, recently adding ride-hailing app Bolt.

AppGallery, Huawei’s mobile app store, and Petal Search, the search engine for Huawei, are pre-installed on all the Chinese telecommunication manufacturer’s latest devices.

According to Huawei, AppGallery is now available in more than 170 countries, with over 530 million monthly active users globally.

Since debuting devices with AppGallery in the local market, Huawei SA says 76% of the apps in the AppGallery are local. “Locally, you can download over one million apps on AppGallery and Huawei Petal Search.”

The apps currently available from the app store cover various industries, including e-commerce, transportation, food delivery and airlines, says the company.

It notes the top local apps are Capitec, FNB, Absa, Nedbank, Standard Bank, Showmax, Takealot, Superbalist, Zando, News24, Nandos, Debonairs and Wimpy.

Bolt, which was recently integrated onto AppGallery, joins another popular ride-hailing app, Uber.

“Most of these ride-hailing apps are integrated within the core Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) ecosystem. They include Huawei map and location kit, which provides an accurate location when booking rides and location tracking, thereby offering an enhanced user experience,” says the company in statement.

“By developing its transportation apps range within Huawei AppGallery, Huawei shows its commitment to integrate more relevant and high-quality innovative apps that meet users’ needs.”

Huawei, which enjoyed a years-long partnership with Alphabet’s Google, had to pivot and chart its own path, amid the China and US trade war.

The Trump administration imposed trade restrictions between Google and Huawei, resulting in the latter going at it on its own.

Google is banned from doing business with Huawei, which has meant no Google Mobile Services (GMS) for Huawei’s latest devices. GMS are the Google apps that often come pre-installed on Android devices.

HMS is Huawei’s effort to create an ecosystem of applications, application programming interfaces and cloud services, with the Android-based EMUI used as the device interface.

In addition to introducing AppGallery and HMS, Huawei has plans to rollout smartphones running on its operating system, HarmonyOS, in the near future.

Huawei says 2.3 million developers globally joined the HMS ecosystem within the second half of 2020 and more than 120 000 applications have integrated with HMS Core worldwide.

To promote South African content in AppGallery, Huawei partnered with local app developers in 2019.

At the time, the company explained that AppGallery is different to other app stores because it has a dedicated team that curates all the apps in terms of relevance and ease of use, and to ensure there are no technical issues.

Responding to how many local developers have since joined the HMS ecosystem, Huawei SA revealed: “HMS has individual, small to medium enterprises as well as large enterprises, which form part of the HMS developer ecosystem.”

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15 Aug
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