Huawei’s HarmonyOS to Outrank iOS by 2024

As of now, the top three mobile operating systems globally are Google’s Android, Apple’s iOS, and Huawei’s HarmonyOS.

Other mobile systems such as Xiaomi’s Surge OS, Honor’s MagicOS, and ColorOS are all based on Android’s AOSP and are not considered independent operating systems—they belong to the Android camp.

Data from the fourth quarter of 2023 shows that Android, iOS, and HarmonyOS hold market shares of approximately 75%, 20%, and 5% globally, respectively.

The market in China, however, tells a different story. In the fourth quarter, Android, iOS, and HarmonyOS had shares of around 70%, 18%, and 12% respectively. This shift is largely due to the popularity of the Huawei Mate60 series, which led to an increase in HarmonyOS’s market share.

With the release of the nova12, expectations are high that Huawei smartphones, which all run on HarmonyOS, will surge in popularity, further boosting the operating system’s market share.

Recently, international media outlet TechInsights predicted that the global smartphone sales volume will see a rebound of +3% in 2024.

Android and Apple’s iOS are expected to continue to dominate the global market. However, Huawei’s HarmonyOS is unlikely to threaten their stronghold. But when it comes to the Chinese market, there might be a reshuffle, with both Android and iOS potentially losing share to HarmonyOS.

Furthermore, by 2024, HarmonyOS is projected to surpass Apple’s iOS, becoming the second largest smartphone operating system in the Chinese market.

In fact, achieving this target may not be as difficult as it seems. Apple’s iOS has been hovering between 15-20% market share, and if Huawei’s sales exceed 20%, HarmonyOS could rise above iOS.

Huawei’s market share is already around 15%, but with the return of Kirin chips and 5G, and provided there are no supply shortages, reaching a 20% market share, given Huawei’s strong fan base, is entirely possible.

Huawei doesn’t just aim to overtake Apple’s iOS in China. It has an even grander plan—to launch a pure HarmonyOS NEXT, completely abandoning the Android AOSP code and no longer supporting Android apps. Users would only be able to use native HarmonyOS apps.

Over 400 companies have already declared their support, with big names like Alipay, Meituan, Xiaohongshu, Ctrip, and MiHoYo starting development on HarmonyOS apps. Therefore, 2024 will be a pivotal year for Huawei’s HarmonyOS.

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