Google Maps has been enjoying a virtual monopoly in the GPS space. Even rival Apple uses Google Maps on its devices. But there may be a competitor for Google in the form of Huawei. Following sanctions, the Chinese company has been pushed into developing its own operating system to be provided with its smartphones and other devices.
The company was singled out in the ongoing trade war between China and the United States. The US government has placed a lot of restrictions on US companies supplying components and technology to Chinese companies. Huawei is being accused of sharing data with the Chinese government and branded a security risk. A special licence issued to companies to continue to work with Huawei also expired on August 19.
Huawei has therefore been forced to look for its own operating system and Map Kit is its answer to Google Maps. Interestingly, the technology is being provided by an American company to Huawei to develop the app. It is expected that once fully developed and released, the app can be functional in 150 countries. The possible date of release is this October. Huawei is seeking apps from the developers to match the features on its Map Kit application. It may be available in 40 languages it is learnt.
According to China Daily, Huawei Map Kit will be available in 40 languages and will offer real-time traffic conditions and a highly sophisticated navigation system which can recognize a car changing lanes.
Booking Holdings, the American company that is into the travel aggregation business in the one helping Huawei in this process. There has hardly been a challenge to Google Maps, as mentioned earlier. The only country where Google has had its difficulty is China due to several governmental restrictions. In the rest of the world the application has been found to be fairly reliable as a navigation tool.
Huawei may find the situation reversed with China being its vantage market and the other countries posing real challenges. One may have to wait till October to see the application being run on the devices before making a final judgement.