If the US trade ban lifts, Huawei can push the Google Play Store to Mate 30 devices overnight. That's according to CEO Richard Yu who made the claim during a briefing after the launch of the Mate 30 Series phones.
The handsets will definitely come to Europe - although we don't yet know when as yet, and as we previously reported they crucially don't have Google Mobile Services or the Google Play Store including apps like Gmail and Google Maps.
When asked about how long it might take Play Store apps appearing on the handset if a ban was lifted, Yu replied instantly "Over one night. We can do that immediately." Presumably, the company would have to roll out an EMUI 10 update in order to do this.
Yu continued: "We are planning [sales in] European countries even without GMS Core [Google Mobile Services] we will still want to allow the consumer to do that themselves.
"For sure we are planning to bring our phones without GMS to [European] countries, the Middle East and elsewhere because consumers like our products and we need to continue our business."
Yu was also clear that Huawei has been a big partner to Google, to demonstrate the folly of the ban. "In past years, we have [made] a big contribution to the Android ecosystem, leading innovation. We were first to bring gesture operation to Android. To be honest it’s not reasonable [for there to be a ban]."
It's certainly true that Huawei and Google have a strong relationship - it's not as if Huawei was on the periphery of the Android ecosystem. Huawei made the 2015 Nexus 6P in collaboration with Google and it was reported that Huawei would have made Pixel phones had it not been for the fact that Google wanted them singularly branded.
As we previously reported, Huawei is also planning on opening up the bootloader on Mate 30 devices to enable users to install another Android build if they want. Huawei's bootloader has been locked down for a while now.
"We limited that because we wanted to guarantee more security," said Yu. "We are planning that consumers can do some customisation by themselves and download some apps that they need, especially US companies apps."
Presumably, if the release dates outside of China are a little way away, the bootloader could end up being unlocked on all non-Chinese handsets.
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