Huawei Mate 30 Pro smartphone launches without any Google apps including Maps and Gmail

Huawei Mate 30 Pro (Image: Huawei)
From Google Maps to Gmail, Google ’s apps are used by millions of people on both iPhone and Android smartphones every day.

But owners of Huawei ’s next smartphone will have an alternative.

They have launched a device without any Google apps, or even the Google Play Store.

Huawei unveiled the new smartphone, called the Huawei Mate 30 Pro, at an event in Munich today.

Richard Yu, chief executive of Huawei Consumer Business Group, put a large emphasis on new hardware features during the launch, including a new quadruple-lens rear camera.

However, details on the software were scarce.

The Chinese firm spoke briefly about its own app store, AppGallery, which will serve as an apparent alternative to the Google Play Store.

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Initial use of AppGallery showed a number of omissions, such as WhatsApp and Instagram .

It also failed to state a release date for the Mate 30 series.

Huawei was effectively blacklisted by the US government in May, amid allegations that the company was a threat to US national security because of alleged close ties to the Chinese government - something Huawei has always denied.

A temporary licence was issued by the US government earlier in the summer and renewed again towards the end of August, which has allowed Huawei to maintain existing devices, but does not apply to new products.

Android, the world's most widely used operating system run by Google, is allowed on the Mate 30 line of devices because it is open-source, but without access to the Google Play Store.

This not only means that Google's main apps, such as Google Maps, will not be accessible, but there also will not be an easy way for people to download and install their other favourite third-party apps as they would from Google Play.

Huawei has long sold Android phones without Google apps in China, but in other countries such as the UK, where the likes of Chrome and Gmail are widely used, it could prove to be a hard sell for consumers.

Ru Bhikha, a mobiles expert from uSwitch , said: “Google was the elephant in the room as Huawei launched the Mate 30. All the talk before the launch was of how the Chinese manufacturer would reassure fans concerned about the absence of Google apps and services from the smartphone.

“Fans expecting Huawei to announce a workaround to allow users to get hold of Gmail, Google Maps and YouTube, were informed that phone store staff would help customers to ‘side-load’ the apps - although this could deter consumers who are more likely to transact online.

“Chief Executive Richard Yu also announced that the alternative to the Google Play Store would be the Huawei App Gallery, but there are still question marks about the apps which would be available on the manufacturer’s own store.

“The situation will surely leave fans wondering whether or not to invest in a phone that may not give them access to the apps they use every day.”

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