When Huawei released its HarmonyOS, it was seen as an Android replacement amidst the ongoing trade war between the U.S. and China. HarmonyOS, according to Huawei, is better than Google’s operating system and brings many features to the plate that Android cannot.
One of the major components of HarmonyOS is Ark Compiler which is a tool that allows developers to quickly port an Android app to Huawei’s OS. Since Huawei does not have its own suite of Google apps replacement, therefore, its OS has to rely on Android apps which is where a compiler comes into play.
Ark compiler is an important part of Huawei’s strategy to combat the ban that barred the Chinese smartphone company from using Google’s services.
According to Chinese developers, Huawei’s Ark Compiler is far from perfect as of now. Most of the developers have criticized HarmonyOS’s Ark Compiler, claiming that it cannot even compile its own demo sample.
Speaking to Abacus, one coder said that Huawei has released HarmonyOS just for the sake of publicity.
Answering the question whether Ark compiler’s open-source code meets everyone’s expectations, one developer wrote on Zhihu, a QnA portal: “The ad says it’s a Michelin 3-star. But when it’s served, it turns out to be a pack of Tingyi cup noodles and it doesn’t even come with hot water. Do you think it has met expectations?”
Another comment on Zhihu, where most comments harshly criticized the Ark compiler, mentioned that it can compile assembly language but that’s about it. It cannot compile apps any further to create executable files.
During its launch, Huawei claimed that HarmonyOS is ready to replace Android if the need arises. However, its reception by Chinese developers suggests otherwise.