[Update: Removed by Huawei] Booking.com ads are showing up on the lock screens of Huawei devices

[Update: Removed by Huawei] Booking.com ads are showing up on the lock screens of Huawei devices

Update 1 (6/14/19 @ 09:15 AM ET):  Huawei confirmed to have removed these lock screen wallpapers from its servers.

Huawei is in the middle of a crisis following the ban imposed by the U.S. government. The ban also prohibits Huawei from installing Google’s apps and services on its smartphones after August 19th, leaving the company hanging by a thread. Besides future devices, the ban also restricts Huawei and Honor from pushing updates to existing devices else they would end up losing access to Google’s services too. But amidst all of this, when Huawei should be trying to clarify the matter with its customers, it is mocking patrons with unwanted ads on the lockscreen.


A number of users have reportedly been seeing ads from hotel reservation portal Booking.com on the lockscreen of their Huawei and Honor smartphones. The affected smartphones include at least Huawei P30 Pro, Huawei P20, P20 Pro, P20 Lite, P10 Lite as well as Honor 10. These ads have started to show up even if users don’t have the Booking.com app installed on their smartphones – although it comes pre-installed on many devices running EMUI.

The ads do not seem to be limited to one region or country and have been spotted in multiple nations including Australia, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, and the UK. It is possible that the issue propagates slowly to other regions.

Remove Booking ads from Huawei and Honor smartphones

As confirmed by most users in a Reddit thread, these ads appear to be a part of Huawei’s Magazine unlock feature. This explains why they appear even without the Booking.com app installed.

You can disable them by heading over to Settings>Lockscreen>Magazine Unlock where you can disable the auto update option for existing subscriptions. While Booking.com ads mostly contain travel-related ads, just disabling the Travel category may not be very effective, as reported by one of the users on the thread linked above.

To secure the case further, delete the folder corresponding to Magazine unlock from either the Gallery or the File Manager. By following these steps, you should stop seeing these lockscreen wallpapers with Booking.com branding.

Via: Android Police

Huawei takes down lock screen ads

Huawei reached out to confirm that these lockscreen wallpapers have been removed from its servers and they should no longer be visible to users. However, since some of these wallpapers may be downloaded on users’ devices, they will have to be removed manually. To get rid of these Booking.com wallpapers from the Magazine feature, follow these steps:

  1. When the wallpaper shows up on the lock screen, swipe up from the bottom to reveal the “operations” toolbar.
  2. Tap on the cross-shaped button and then on “Remove” in the dialog box that pops up.

The company, however, did not clarify if these were uploaded intentionally or by mistake.

If you follow the steps above, you need not need to disable the Lock Screen Magazine option. In case you still see them, let us know.

About author

Tushar Mehta
Tushar Mehta

I am a Senior Editor at XDA. I have been reviewing gadgets for over five years and gained experience by working for prominent tech publications in India before joining XDA. I enjoy fiddling with all smart objects and my love for software customization dates back to the Symbian S60 days. I like to devote my spare time idealizing the romantic union of technology and philosophy or spacing out on Pink Floyd. You may email me at [email protected]

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