In a strange turn of events, some Huawei users have reported that ads have started appearing on their smartphone's lock screen. These ads, which only appear on the default wallpaper setting of landscape imagery, seem to appear on certain Huawei models including the P20 Pro and P30 Pro.
All of these ads show the same travel booking website: Booking.com. Reports have been coming in since June 12 and have been increasing since today from around the world, including Europe and South Africa.
Of course, users aren't happy. Rumours are being spread that Huawei is planning to mass deploy ads on their mobile devices, though there's no confirmation at this time. Users have also claimed they never saw any sort of announcement or warning that the advertisements were inbound, and that they were never prompted to opt into getting advertisements. Though lock screens ads aren’t unheard of, they usually only appear from either malware or third-party apps the user must deliberately install and enable.
In a statement to Digital Trends, Huawei stated they didn't initiate the advertisements and that users should follow ‘publicly available directions on how to remove lock screen ads.’ The company is suggesting the ads are caused by a third-party app or service, but users point out that they appeared at the same time, featuring the same ads, on the same preinstalled wallpapers. For now, users can get rid of the ads by changing to a different wallpaper.
Days after users have filed complaints regarding the unwanted addition to their smartphone's lockscreens, Huawei has now confirmed that these lockscreen wallpapers have been removed from its servers and should no longer be visible to its users. Unfortunately, the lockscreen wallpapers may have already been downloaded on some devices, and will be required to be removed manually.
To get rid of these Booking.com wallpapers from the Magazine feature, follow these steps:
1) When the image appears on the screen, slide up from the bottom edge of the screen, and the operation toolbar appears;
2) Click the "Delete" button and click "Remove" in the confirmation box which pops up.
In the statement, Huawei also apologised to their users for the mishap and will continue to improve services for a better experience. However, they did not clarify if the lockscreen ads were intentionally or included by mistake.