Huawei may ship Sailfish-based Aurora OS on tablets used for the Russian census
Huawei has been forced into a rough patch by the US Government after it got placed on the Entity List that prohibited US companies from doing business with this Chinese giant. The company did expect some relief, but as we now know, the ban had been extended for another 90 days. These decisions have massively affected Huawei as they directly put a question mark on the future of Huawei smartphones, especially since it would restrict the company from using Android as its OS of choice. Huawei had a longer-term vision in place that they subsequently had to hasten, and the Chinese tech giant ended up unveiling its own fallback OS in the form of Harmony OS out of necessity rather than choice. When it was exploring options, Huawei was also reportedly considering the Sailfish-based Aurora OS. As it turns out, the company is now looking to ship tablets with Aurora OS to Russia for use in its upcoming population census.
According to a report from Reuters, Huawei has begun talks with Russia about installing Aurora OS on as many as 360,000 tablets which shall be used to conduct Russia’s population census next year. This pilot project is being seen as the first stage of launching this Sailfish OS fork on Huawei devices. Aurora OS is developed by Russia’s state telecom operator, Rostelecom, which is also the sole contractor for buying the tablets that will be used for official work in the population census in Russia to be held in October 2020. Aurora OS is not being currently used anywhere.
Huawei expects to lose $10 Billion in revenue within just the smartphone unit this year because of the US trade restrictions. The company appears to be exploring alternatives to ensure its survival in the future without needing to rely on US-based services and partners.