Top Chinese smartphone makers namely Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo, and Vivo have joined hands to form an app store alliance named Global Developer Service Alliance (GDSA) to take on Google Play Store, according to an exclusive report by Reuters. It was supposed to be made official in March, however, the recent novel coronavirus epidemic in China might delay the launch.
Last year, the US government added Huawei to the entity list, which made all the US-based companies to shun their business with the Chinese telecommunication giant. As of result of it, Huawei lost its GMS (Google Mobile Services) license, which enables Google Play Store and related apps (YouTube, Gmail, Google Maps, etc) to work on Android devices. Although all the Chinese smartphone companies have their own app store since Google is banned in their country, it is difficult for them to sell their devices outside China. Hence, Huawei’s smartphone market share plummeted internationally after the US ban but due to strong nationalism, the company grew even more in its home country.
Anyways, the moral of the story is smartphone companies cannot sell their devices without proper apps ecosystem. And thus, Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo, and Vivo have formed an alliance named Global Developer Service Alliance (GDSA) to let developers upload their apps simultaneously to all the members’ individual app stores. The latter three bands are also part of another alliance named Peer-to-Peer Transmission Alliance to enable sharing of files among their devices. Interestingly, they have welcomed more companies to join this association and the same can be expected for the newly proposed app store collaboration.
As per the Reuter’s report, GDSA was initially planned to launch in March but the novel coronavirus outbreak may affect the official announcement. Additionally, a prototype website set up for the platform reveals it to cover nine regions at first including India, Indonesia, and Russia. None of the five companies (including Google) commented on this report yet.
Having said that, the app store alliance may help the Chinese smartphone makers in the worst-case scenario but at present, it is difficult for any of them to sell devices without GMS (Google Mobile Services) outside China.