Huawei's Play Store competitor is doing better than you think

Huawei Mate 40 Pro
Huawei Mate 40 Pro (Image credit: Alex Dobie / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Huawei has been cut off from Google for the past two years.
  • The company developed its App Gallery as a replacement for the Google Play Store.
  • Huawei this month announced strong continued growth of the App Gallery.

Despite the lack of Google support for its phones, Huawei is still here and making some of the best Android phones we've seen, when it comes to hardware at least. The company had been forced to build out its own App Gallery, a Play Store replacement, to even compete in the smartphone market. There are few signs that it's doing much to stop the bleeding in markets which rely heavily on the Play Store. Still, the company today shared news of the uptake of its AppGallery over the past year, and it's a growing business.

Huawei says that AppGallery now boasts 530 million monthly active users across the world, 2.3 million registered developers, and has seen a 188% increase in apps that work with HMS core. The company further cited the inclusion of new apps like Bolt and HERE WeGo as proof of continued expansion.

Huawei's Zhang Zhe, Director of Global Partnerships and Eco-Development Business Development, said the numbers were proof of AppGallery's progress as a global app marketplace, further adding that "In 2019, there were 25 countries with over a million AppGallery users. That number has now grown to 42 and we continue to see strong growth across global markets."

It's not clear how to square these increased numbers with reports of Huawei bleeding market share. In February 2020, Huawei claimed that AppGallery had 400 million active users, so it has grown by a fair number. Perhaps Huawei's light in foreign markets has ignited a surge in its home market, or the lack of options has forced all Huawei buyers to use the AppGallery whether they'd want to, or not. Either way, AppGallery's certainly not being written off anytime soon.

Michael Allison