Huawei and a Chinese Google Play store: Google needs a Chinese OEM just as much as a Chinese OEM needs Google

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Google is said to be working on their next Nexus smartphone with Huawei. This is would be a great opportunity for Huawei as the Chinese company has seen great success globally, having the 4th largest vendor market share. However they’ve had minimal success here in the US. Huawei and other Chinese OEMs just aren’t household names here. Having Google’s official support would be great for Huawei brand recognition, showing the American public that Huawei is trustworthy and worth looking into. If a company such as Google can trust Huawei, then so can the consumer. This could set a trend that would bolster sales of other Huawei smartphones in the US in addition to the next Nexus.

With a population of over 1 billion, Google needs China’s consumers to continue their global domination. Apple and non-Google versions of Android are doing quite well in China and continuing to grow, without Google. Android phones with Google Mobile Services aren’t growing, because they can’t. Google services are blocked by The Great Firewall of China. Google needs a way to break into the Chinese market. Even Sundar Pichai himself showed interest last winter stating that “it would be a privilege to serve Chinese users” and that hopefully Google would have a chance to offer their services to Chinese users sometime in the future.

Last month, local Chinese media reported that Google was lobbying to push a new application store in China. Google was even said to have approached Chinese hardware manufacturers and offered them $1 per handset sold with the Google Play store and Google services.

If this report is to be believed, then it would seem that Google has already received the green light from Beijing to move forward. However, just because Google is allowed to punch through The Great Firewall of China doesn’t mean the road ahead would be an easy one. Google would need to convince OEMs to use a new set of services and applications that they’re not used to pre-installing inside China, currently relying on Chinese services from Google clones like Baidu and their own homegrown solutions. This is where the lobbying and the $1 incentive mentioned above comes into play.

Having one of China’s largest OEMs sell an Android phone with Google Mobile Services and the Google Play store would certainly be a win for Google in China and would set a precedent for other OEMs to follow suit if the move pans outs to be successful.

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We previously told you that the Huawei Watch was delayed until this September or October. Google generally launches Nexus phones in the fall. We could see the Huawei Watch launch alongside the Huawei Nexus simultaneously in China with the Google Play store. That wouldn’t be a bad way to introduce Google back into China, would it?

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