World’s third largest smartphone maker Huawei Technologies Co. is gearing up its plans to launch digital assistant with its own voice-powered service. Huawei Digital Assistant is in budding stage with over a hundred engineers are working on it at its Shenzhen, China offices. Aiming the Apple Inc.’s Siri, Alphabet Inc.’s Google Assistant, and Amazon.com Inc.’s Alexa, Huawei is extending its effort on technology.
Targeting the domestic users, Huawei’s assistant would communicate in Chinese languages. On the other hand, Huawei continues to work with Amazon and Google outside China. Interestingly, Siri may help Huawei devices to stand out in the Chinese market crowd. However, many Google services which come with the dominant Android operating system are blocked in China.
The company is targeting $33 billion consumer sales this year. Huawei trails only Samsung and Apple in global smartphone shipments as it drives up the market with premium features. This move of building an in-house voice assistant from major Android device manufacturer may jerk Google in its plans.
Recently, Huawei confirmed its plans to make use of Alexa assistant on its Mate 9 smartphones in the U.S. As of now, Google Assistant only runs on Pixel smartphones, smartwatches and Home speakers running on the latest Android Wear software. The search engine giant Google is trying to get third-party device makers to pre-install its assistant.
Recalling the past, Huawei is not the first smartphone maker to develop their own service over using Google’s platform. Viv Labs, a startup formed by some Siri founders, is been acquired by Samsung to serve as the basis for its own voice assistant. Another Chinese search giant Baidu Inc. had also announced the launch of its own voice service back in 2015.