Huawei reversal: bootloader to stay locked on Mate 30 line

Huawei reversal: bootloader to stay locked on Mate 30 line
Richard Yu, the CEO of Huawei's consumer group, originally told Android Authority that the manufacturer planned on allowing the bootloader on the recently announced Mate 30 line to be unlocked. This could have led knowledgeable Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro owners to scope out ROMs that include Google apps and flash it on the phones. If you're not familiar with this process, it is simply a way to load a customized version of Android on a handset. This is not something that the average guy or gal on the street should attempt since a mistake can brick their device.

Flashing a ROM requires the phone to have an unlocked bootloader. Since most phone manufacturers do not want to see their customers doing this, and because it could open a Pandora's Box of problems, unlocking the bootloader will usually void the warranty on a phone. Still, it appeared that Huawei was willing to unlock the bootloader on its new flagships since they are not allowed to carry the Google Play Store, Google services and other Google apps like Gmail, Maps, Search and YouTube. Not being able to obtain the license required to include these apps on the Mate 30 series will certainly impact sales of these models outside of China; these are sales that the manufacturer had been counting on earlier this year to help it ship 300 million handsets and surpass Samsung as the world's largest smartphone manufacturer. Huawei, of course, is banned from accessing its U.S. supply chain because it was placed on the U.S. Commerce Department's Entity List for security purposes (although many, including Richard Yu, say that it was done to make Huawei a bargaining chip in future U.S.-China trade negotiations).

Once removed from the Entity List, Huawei could send a software update to Mate 30 owners adding Google services and apps


Android Authority is reporting today that a Huawei spokesman reached out to tell them that despite Yu's original comment, there are no plans to unlock the bootloader. It's just more of the confusing, conflicting drama that has surrounded Huawei ever since the company was placed on the Entity List on May 16th. For months there were questions over how Huawei would replace the Google Play services version of Android on the Mate 30 line. Huawei had reportedly been working on an Android replacement for years and on August 9th, HarmonyOS was introduced. But Huawei founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei admitted earlier this month that the company has not yet even considered how to get HarmonyOS to run on a mobile phone.


The Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro both have the AOSP open-source version of Android installed along with Huawei's App Gallery. This is similar to the version of Android that you might find on the Amazon Fire tablets. Google was among the first U.S. companies to cut ties with Huawei, but it surely isn't something that the U.S. firm is happy about. If Huawei turns out to be a bargaining chip and is used by the Trump administration to get better terms in a new trade agreement, it could then be removed from the Entity List and be allowed to resume conducting business with its U.S. supply chain. Under this type of scenario, Huawei's Yu said that it could quickly add Google services and apps to Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro handsets overnight via a software update.

Huawei's devices and networking equipment are considered national security threats in the U.S. because of a law in China that would allow the communist government to call on the company to gather intelligence on its behalf. As a result, Huawei's products are rumored to contain a back door that would send information on American companies and consumers to Beijing. Huawei has repeatedly denied this allegation and Chairman Liang Hua even offered to sign a "no-spy" contract with any country.

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Mate 30 Pro
  • Display 6.5" 1176 x 2400 pixels
  • Camera 40 MP / 32 MP front
  • Processor HiSilicon Kirin 990, Octa-core, 2860 MHz
  • Storage 256 GB + Nano Memory (NM)
  • Battery 4500 mAh
Mate 30
  • Display 6.6" 1080 x 2340 pixels
  • Camera 40 MP / 24 MP front
  • Processor HiSilicon Kirin 990, Octa-core, 2860 MHz
  • Storage 128 GB + Nano Memory (NM)
  • Battery 4200 mAh

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19 Comments

1. torr310

Posts: 1674; Member since: Oct 27, 2011

screw....you. LOL

2. SyCo87

Posts: 318; Member since: Sep 19, 2013

He had to given their situation with Google and the US gov.

3. MsPooks

Posts: 169; Member since: Jul 08, 2019

Huawei lied?! Shocked /s.

8. ShadowSnypa786

Posts: 593; Member since: Jan 06, 2017

LOL what do you people expect from Huawei. They don't even know if Harmony OS is coming or going and they love confusing people so this is no different. At the end of the day Huawei fanboys can blame Google and call it Spyware all they want even their Lord Saviour Huawei is waiting and ready to put Google service's back onto their phone's because even they don't want to use their half baked OS.

11. alanrock

Posts: 324; Member since: Oct 04, 2018

angry Samsung fans everywhere, that is weird.

14. ShadowSnypa786

Posts: 593; Member since: Jan 06, 2017

LOL so guess Huawei don't keep going back on what the say?? My mistake then ;)

15. QuantumRazer

Posts: 149; Member since: Apr 27, 2019

They said they had a "plan" to do it, but never confirmed it would definitely be there. They changed their mind before making any final decision, it's still sad to see Mate 30 series will have a locked BL, though.

4. chris2k5

Posts: 282; Member since: Nov 17, 2012

Well there goes any chance of side loading apps. This phone is basically a phone, browser, and camera now. Huawei is done.

5. Phullofphil

Posts: 1822; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

I think it’s a little more complicated than that. First of all locked boot loaders did not stop us in the past. They all used to be locked and there had to be a work around. But on the other hand sidloading apps If you have not paid for them is bulls**t. The other thing is back when I had android I never needed an unlocked boot loader to side load apps.

6. CX3NT3_713

Posts: 2360; Member since: Apr 18, 2011

No need for unlocked bootloader. There's a video on YouTube. Of a guy installing playstor and services on a demo unit at Huawei's on reveal event

12. S4NDY

Posts: 255; Member since: Mar 14, 2016

Possible He has seen my example how to do it, I'm also doing a video in English about as soon as I can get my hands Mate 30 pro

7. tiz_meh

Posts: 78; Member since: Aug 11, 2017

Typical double-twisted-tongue communist. Most people don't even know what a communist is.

9. AlienKiss

Posts: 200; Member since: May 21, 2019

Let's be honest for once: - LESS than 1% of the people buying one of their phones, would even consider bothering with trying to sideload the app by themselves. The other 99% HAVE NO CLUE what Google services are in the first place or they DON'T WANT TO BOTHER with that after paying MORE than 1000USD on a phone! There's absolutely nothing else to be said or done. Face it: huawho is DEAD! If you think that those 1% will help huawho survive, you are so delusional I'd say: lay off the drugs son! You're trippin' :)) The other 99% are already thinking about buying an iPhone (the ones who can't tell the difference between Android and ios). I know you don't like it but that's called karma :))

10. mootu

Posts: 1530; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

Huawei is dead? They are set to sell around 140 million phones in China in 2019 and are the biggest network communications company in the world. Will this hurt them in other regions? , yes. But Huawei are dead!, far from it.

13. stijnvbml

Posts: 76; Member since: Feb 20, 2013

They will not die, I also think the government will not let that happen,, but I mean it is hard to denied that outside China, without Google Services, Huawei is done.

16. Cyberchum

Posts: 1093; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

You minding that fellow? Lol Sells in China, alone, would top that of Sony, LG and HTC combined. Their dreams of becoming the top manufacturer (and bigger revenue) is what is under great threat. China, alone, can't give them that.

17. Ali888

Posts: 100; Member since: Apr 13, 2018

Lol. How to cut your own jugular

18. swarai

Posts: 87; Member since: Aug 07, 2014

Since there are no plans to unlock the bootloader, I have no plans to purchase their phone

19. Vogue1985

Posts: 478; Member since: Jan 24, 2017

You can get most google,folks in china have had methods of getting connected to google playstore for many years,despite its unofficially. No custom room required, am surprised most techies dont know . Why do you think Huawei would go ahead and tease launch,plus google has closed these methods that they know many people in china and other countries where media is controlled to the extreme. Big marker for VPN services overseas

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