Late last year, we uncovered evidence that Huawei was working with Google's Fuchsia, even working to bring the OS to its own Honor Play gaming phone. Over two months after the company was hit by sanctions that prevented them from working with American tech, the Chinese giant is apparently still interested in partnering with Fuchsia.
Before Huawei developers worked to support Honor Play, Google laid the foundation by developing Fuchsia support for a variety of developer boards. One of these was the HiKey 960, which according to creator 96Boards is a "development platform based around the Huawei Kirin 960" SoC.
While no other public development work has been done for Honor Play, Huawei developers have continued to make improvements to Fuchsia's HiKey 960 support. This work continued throughout May 3 when they hit a minor roadblock while a few Fuchsia team members were on vacation.
Less than two weeks later, President Trump placed Huawei on the blacklist for export and the company was immediately cut off from Google technologies like future versions of Android. Since then, no Huawei developers had shown continued interest in the Fuchsia OS, presumably because of the ban.
This morning, a Huawei developer chimed in once again on Fuchsia's Gerrit source code management, signaling the company's continued interest in Google's development operating system. (You may notice that the comment was left by a Gmail address, but the commenter is also identified with an @ Huawei․com email address at the top of the page.)
In some context, you may remember that Fuchsia under the hood consists of four different parts (previously called "layers") ̵
It is very surprising that Huawei will still be interested in the Fuchsia OS, given their current inability to rely on US technology in the long term, but that is not the only reason. Huawei has developed its own operating system, called Hongmeng, originally reported as an Android alternative, although this proved not to be the case.
For the most part, this Hongmeng OS is some mystery for now. One fact we know about Huawei's Hongmeng is that it uses a microkernel, just like Fuchsia. Without getting too far into the technical details and possible advantages / disadvantages, using a micro-kernel means that the operating system is built on a slender core, rather than a much larger one than you see in current operating systems like Windows, macOS and Android .  So the question now becomes: Why does Huawei work with the Fuchsia Zircon micro-kernel when their own Hongmeng OS has its own micro-kernel?
Hongmeng may be in some way based on Fuchsia's Zircon micro-kernel, but this seems unlikely as Fuchsia, a Google project, should also be subject to US sanctions. Another possibility is that Huawei could simply prepare for the possibility of one day Fuchsia becoming Google's flagship OS.
Until more information comes out, we can only speculate at this time.
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