Huawei to make up for the Play Store by pre-installing apps on its phones

Huawei Mate 30 Pro
Huawei Mate 30 Pro (Image credit: Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Huawei aims to fill the void left by the Play Store by simply pre-installing the most popular apps on its phones before they're sold.
  • The P40 may be among the first smartphones to test this strategy.
  • The list of apps installed will vary between regions.

Huawei is looking to create its own alternative to Google Mobile Services, complete with an app store and everything. It's even got other Chinese smartphone makers, such as Xiaomi, OPPO, and Vivo, to sign up to its Global Developer Service Alliance, which allows each company to prop up its own app store over the Play Store.

Yet, even with all those machinations in the works, there's no denying that the U.S. ban on its phones has taken a massive toll on the company's ability to sell its phones outside China. And though flustering international sales have been more than compensated by increased sales in the company's homeland, it obviously needs some sort of solution.

And so while it continues working on making a viable Play Store alternative, in the meantime, it's hoping to preinstall the 70 most popular apps on its phones. If you can't bring the user to the app store, then you must bring the apps to the user, as they say.

The list of apps selected will vary depending on the region in which the smartphones are to be sold, and will be based on the Play Store's listing of top apps.

The strategy, which comes courtesy of, will be extensively tested in the coming months, with the Russian publication claiming that Huawei will "overwhelm us" with up to nine new phones in the next four months. Among these will be the Huawei Y7p and P40 Lite. And if the Lite variant is getting the treatment, it's reasonable to assume that the full P40 series, expected to debut sometime next month, may also feature these sideloaded apps.

Whoever knew a company installing bloatware on its phones would actually be seen as the solution to a company's flagging sales one day?

  • Yeah...thing is...the same ban preventing the installation of the Play Store on Huawei phones will ALSO prevent the likes of Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat from allowing Huawei to access their apps. So...Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp, Snapchat, Outlook, OneDrive etc...none of that will be made available to Huawei for pre-installation.
    So it'll actually really be bloatware-galore.
  • There's Snapchat in AppGallery.
    You can install Amazon appstore which has Facebook, Instagram, messenger, etc.. Let's see how Huawei plays this one out
  • The point is that Facebook, Amazon et al are American companies, so are forbidden from doing business with Huawei just like Google are.
  • Exactly.
    It's not a question of being able to convince developers to put the apps in App Gallery, it's the problem of them not being allowed since last Summer to do so.
  • I respect the hustle. Seems like they are trying something new every week.
  • At least they are trying to break US backed monopoly
  • I am with Huawei on this one. Its ridiculous to cripple the company for developing and winning 5G war. Great phones, great tech and we are stuck using $1000+ Samsungs or shiтту Pixels with 2 year old tech
  • That isn't the point. China doesn't play fair, doesn't abide by agreements. They will tell you what you want to hear, then do whatever they want. Their massive improvements are built on the backs of US innovation. They constantly steal US intellectual property. Every company in China is beholden to the state, which holds absolute power, oppresses their people, and takes information regardless of any moral consideration or objection. China is a geopolitical threat to the entire western hemisphere. Should they really be allowed to be in charge of the West's entire communication framework?
  • Change that 'US' to 'Western', and I'm right with you...
  • And yet, there is a massive orange moron in charge of the west's entire present and future. I am taking my chances with china.
  • Oh right. Our country is such bad shape.
  • Much worse than you think bozo.
  • You mean that guy who is the first Western leader since the shortsighted decision by the Nixon administration to invite China onto the world stage (a part of the Cold War efforts) to actually stand up to the leaders of that evil regime? Come on, set aside the hate for a moment and try to see with a bit of clarity. I wish it hadn't taken a person like President Trump to actually begin to assert some rational degree of resistance to China's evils...but it appears that it does. That's an indictment on the whole system, not one man or party.
  • I am definitely taking my chances with China as well.
    I mean America is stealing data on a daily basis now they afraid for China doing th same.
    I see that as the real concern America has, and the 5G technology is making things much easier and faster.
    Maybe I'm wrong, but America can't handle the heat coming from this giant. HAUWEI IS KILLING THEM IN EVERY CORNER.
    And I feel somehow Samsung can be behind this, because Hauwei is aiming to take them down.
  • So Huawei is prevented from installing technology in the core of their phone somehow. And yet the OS is still Android, and they are talking about preinstalling the most common or popular apps. Even if the regulations are enforced strictly enough that they are prevented from doing so, it must be technically feasible, so even if they can't install them, if I or anyone else really wants the other advantages, such as the widely cited "best smartphone camera" badly enough to do a little extra work setting up their phone, it should work.
  • Yes. Should be no problem.