Huawei EMUI
Logo of Huawei EMUI.png
OS familyAndroid (Linux), HarmonyOS (Unix-like)
Working stateCurrent
Source modelFree software with proprietary components
Initial releaseDecember 30, 2012; 10 years ago (2012-12-30)
Latest releaseEMUI 13 / October 20, 2022; 3 months ago (2022-10-20),
Update methodFirmware over-the-air
Package managerHuawei AppGallery (2012 - present, both Global and China),
APK files, .app on HAP(since EMUI 12)
Platforms32 and 64-bit ARM, MIPS, x86, x64
Kernel typeMonolithic, modified Linux kernel
LicenseGNU General Public License v3,
Apache License 2.0,
Succeeded byHarmonyOS (only China)
Official &

EMUI (formerly known as Emotion UI, and also known as Magic UI on Honor smartphones since 2019)[1] is an Android-derived mobile operating system developed by Chinese technology company Huawei. It is used on the company's smartphones and tablets.

In mainland China, and internationally since 2020 due to U.S. sanctions, EMUI devices utilise Huawei Mobile Services such as Huawei AppGallery instead of Google Mobile Services.


On 30 December 2012, Huawei introduced Emotion UI 1.0, based on Android 4.0. It features a voice assistant app (only in Chinese), customizable homescreens and theme-switching.[2] The company rolled out installation files for the Ascend P1 through their website.[3] The company claims that it is "probably the world's most emotional system".[4]

On 4 September 2014, the company announced EMUI 3.0, along with Ascend Mate 7 in the pre-IFA event in Berlin. The user interface was ever since called "EMUI" instead of "Emotion UI". In Mainland China, the release introduces the Huawei AppGallery application store; international markets continued to use Google Play.[5]

In late 2015, Huawei introduced EMUI 4.0, based on Android Marshmallow.[6] In 2016, EMUI 5.0 was introduced, based on Android Nougat.[7] In 2017, Huawei introduced EMUI 8.0, based on Android Oreo; beginning with this release, the version number would now be aligned with that of the Android version from which it was derived.[8]

Huawei unveiled EMUI 9.0, based on Android Pie, at IFA in 2018. Huawei stated a goal for the release to make EMUI more "simple", "enjoyable", and consistent; it included various usability tweaks, reorganized settings menus, dark mode, gesture navigation, and GPU Turbo 2.0.[9][10][11] Beginning with EMUI 9.0.1, new Huawei devices ship with the company's EROFS file system for its system partitions, which is designed for higher performance in read-only settings on devices with limited resources.[12][13][14] In July 2019, Huawei released EMUI 9.1[15]

EMUI 10, based on Android 10, was announced 9 August 2019 at the Huawei Developer Conference.[16] It features an updated interface with larger "magazine"-styled headings, new animations, colour accents inspired by painter Giorgio Morandi, and Android 10's system-wide dark mode support.[17] Beginning 2020 due to United States sanctions against Huawei (which prohibit U.S.-based companies from doing business with the company), new EMUI smartphones sold internationally (beginning with the Mate 30) are no longer certified by Google, do not include support for Google Mobile Services (GMS) including Google Play, and are marketed as running EMUI with no reference to the Android trademark. These devices introduce AppGallery and Huawei Mobile Services to international markets as an alternative to Google-provided software.[18][19]

In 2020 alongside the P40, Huawei announced EMUI 10.1, which adds multi-window support, and the new first-party apps Celia and MeeTime. Huawei announced updates for some of its existing devices in June 2020.[20] On September 2020, Huawei publicly announced HarmonyOS 2.0 support for EMUI 11 updated smartphone devices as the company shifts towards HarmonyOS development. In December 2020, Huawei released the HarmonyOS 2.0 beta for the P30, P40 and P50, which iterates from EMUI 10.[21]

As of October 2021, Huawei plans to launch an upgrade bridge to EMUI 12 to older Huawei smartphone models gradually in the first half of 2022 in global markets while HarmonyOS 2 launches in domestic markets. Prepping EMUI successor, future HarmonyOS development for global markets in the coming years. [22]

EMUI 12 is the first EMUI version based on HarmonyOS 2 with OpenHarmony 2.1.0 core which features its own distributed file sharing called Distributed File System that adapts with HarmonyOS powered smart devices with smart TVs, smart speakers and other types of devices which is created from native (HDFS) HarmonyOS Distributed File System [23] and can run native HarmonyOS Ability Package apps. EMUI 12 supports Large Folders that group similar apps in a large folder and name the folder for better organised management and discovery of apps.[24] Difference between EMUI 12 and HarmonyOS running HAP based apps, is that EMUI 12 don't support Atomic Services and App Snippets in the form of interactive visual card based widgets. EMUI 12 don't support HarmonyOS Multi-Device Task Viewer and has a watered down Super Device user experience via Device+.[25] The EMUI 12 update for older global versions of Huawei smartphones is based on Android 10.[26]

On 20th of October 2022, Huawei unveiled their upcoming version of EMUI, which is EMUI 13 on their official website.[27] It inherits the main features unveiled with HarmonyOS 3, such as widgets which can be stacked on top of another, folders which can be resized like Android widgets, and a few other features.

Version history

Version Android/HarmonyOS version Year of release Last stable release
Emotion UI 1.x Android 2.3 - 4.3 2012 1.6
Emotion UI 2.x Android 4.2 - 4.4 2013 2.3
EMUI 3.x Android 4.4 - 5.1 2014 3.1
EMUI 4.x Android Marshmallow (6.x) 2015 4.1
EMUI 5.x Android Nougat (7.x) 2016 5.1.1
EMUI 8.x Android Oreo (8.x) 2017 8.2
EMUI 9.x
MagicUI 2.x
Android Pie (9) 2018 9.1
EMUI 10.x
MagicUI 3.x
Android 10 2019 10.1
EMUI 11.x
MagicUI 4.x
Android 10 or Android 11 for MagicUI 4.2 2020 11
EMUI 12.x
MagicUI 5.x
Android 10 (for existing devices), Android 11 (for devices that pre-shipped with EMUI 12) and HarmonyOS 2(China) microkernel (OpenHarmony 2.1.0)


2021 12
EMUI 13.x[29]MagicOS 7.x[30] Based on HarmonyOS 3, Android version: Android 12 2022 13


Earlier versions of EMUI have been criticized for placing all app icons on the home screen, with some reviewers saying that it tries to imitate Apple's iOS. The app drawer has been brought back as an option in EMUI 5.0.[31] PC Magazine's Adam Smith criticized EMUI for being bloated with duplicate apps and the settings menus being difficult to navigate.[32]


  1. ^ Wright, Arol (18 November 2019). "Android 10-based Magic UI 3.0 update rolls out for the Honor View 20 and Honor 20". XDA Developers. Retrieved 6 December 2019.
  2. ^ Robertson, Adi (1 September 2012). "Huawei's Emotion UI drops the app drawer, adds beginner-friendly features to Android 4.0". The Verge. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  3. ^ Smith, Mat (30 August 2012). "Huawei shows off early version of Emotion UI for Android, packs a 'stock' skin too (hands-on)". Engadget. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  4. ^ "Huawei's new Emotion UI gets its own Chinese official website, should be up for download soon". Android Authority. 3 July 2012. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  5. ^ Arora, Hitesh (4 September 2014). "Huawei Launches Metal-Clad Ascend G7 With Android 4.4 KitKat at IFA". NDTV Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  6. ^ Martonik, Andrew (26 November 2015). "Huawei announces Mate 8 in China, sporting Marshmallow and Kirin 950 processor". Android Central. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  7. ^ Gondhia, Nirave (4 November 2016). "What's new in EMUI 5?". Android Authority. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  8. ^ "Top 5 tips and tricks for getting the most out of EMUI 8". Android Central. 29 December 2017. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  9. ^ Gordon, Scott Adam (1 September 2018). "Huawei announces Pie-based EMUI 9.0 at IFA 2018: find out what's new here". Android Authority. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  10. ^ "Clean, Current & Custom: Here's what's new with EMUI 9.0". TechCrunch. 18 August 2019. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  11. ^ "Have you tried the new Dark Interface from EMUI 9 | HUAWEI Support UK". Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  12. ^ Michael Larabel (19 November 2018). "There Is Finally A User-Space Utility To Make EROFS Linux File-Systems". Phoronix. Phoronix. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  13. ^ Xiang, Gao (31 May 2018). "erofs: introduce erofs file system". Linux kernel (Mailing list). Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  14. ^ Xiang, Gao (4 July 2019). "erofs: promote erofs from staging". Linux kernel (Mailing list). Retrieved 3 September 2019.
  15. ^ "Huawei releases EMUI 9.1 update roadmap". 24 June 2019. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  16. ^ John H. Jr. (9 August 2019). "Huawei announced the EMUI 10 at HDC 2019". Huawei Central. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  17. ^ "Huawei EMUI 10 update: What's new and when will it come to your phone?". Pocket-lint. 15 July 2020. Retrieved 16 April 2021.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  18. ^ Warren, Tom (19 September 2019). "Huawei confirms the new Mate 30 Pro won't come with Google's Android apps". The Verge. Retrieved 22 September 2019.
  19. ^ Porter, Jon (12 May 2020). "Huawei's P30 Pro gets another rerelease to keep the Google dream alive". The Verge. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  20. ^ "Huawei announces plans for global EMUI 10.1 rollout". Android Police. 18 June 2020. Retrieved 21 July 2020.
  21. ^ Amadeo, Ron (2 February 2021). "Huawei's HarmonyOS: "Fake it till you make it" meets OS development". Ars Technica. Retrieved 14 February 2021.
  22. ^ Sarkar, Amy. "EMUIHuawei EMUI 12 launched, rollout start in 2022". Huawei Central. Huawei Central. Retrieved 30 October 2021.
  23. ^ Li, Deng. "EMUI 12: Distributed file sharing". Huawei Central. Huawei Central. Retrieved 2 March 2022.
  24. ^ Sarkar, Amy. "EMUIHuawei EMUI 12 Feature: Large Folders [Video]". Huawei Central. Huawei Central. Retrieved 28 August 2022.
  25. ^ Lesner, Leszek. "EMUI 12 vs HarmonyOS - Feature Differences!?". YouTube. Techview Podcast. Retrieved 27 August 2022.
  26. ^ "EMUI 13 will come with Android 12?". Huawei Central. 23 July 2022.
  27. ^ "EMUI 13 - HUAWEI Global". Retrieved 31 October 2022.
  28. ^ "EMUI 13 will come with Android 12?". Huawei Central. 23 July 2022.
  29. ^ "HUAWEI Mate 50 Pro Specifications - HUAWEI Global". Retrieved 9 September 2022.
  30. ^ Honor MagicOS 7.0 Official Introduction, retrieved 22 November 2022
  31. ^ Rutnik, Mitja (25 July 2019). "What is EMUI? A closer look at Huawei's Android skin". Android Authority. Retrieved 7 September 2019.
  32. ^ Smith, Adam (24 May 2019). "Huawei P30 Preview". PC Magazine. Retrieved 7 September 2019.