Sideloading Google Apps To Your Huawei Or Honor Smartphone? Please Don't, Says Google

It's way too risky

Huawei and Honor smartphones have it tough recently as they pump out more devices that do not come with Google Mobile Services. While it will take some time for Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) to reach GMS level, users who are keen to own a Huawei or Honor smartphone without GMS may be tempted into finding ways to sideload Google apps to their devices.

Well, Google wants you to be clear; you can't and shouldn't do that. In fact, if you try to do that, Google claims bad things can happen.

In a support article for its Android Help Community, titled “Answering your questions on Huawei devices and Google”, Tristan Ostrowski, Android and Play legal director clarified their stance and relationship with Huawei that they will continue to work with Huawei to provide security updates and updates to Google’s apps and services on Huawei device models available to the public on or before 16 May 2019, as long as they have already been certified Play Protect devices.

To protect user data privacy, security and safeguard the overall experience, the Google Play Store, Google Play Protect and Google’s core apps (including Gmail, YouTube, Maps and others) are only available on Play Protect certified devices 

Play Protect certified devices go through a rigorous security review and compatibility testing process, performed by Google, to ensure user data and app information are kept safe. They also come from the factory with our Google Play Protect software, which provides protection against the device being compromised.

This is why a number of Huawei and Honor devices launched after 16 May 2019 are rehash of older models that have already received certification from Google. If you had purchased a device without the Play Protect and are planning to sideload Google apps, here's what it states:

... sideloaded Google apps will not work reliably because we do not allow these services to run on uncertified devices where security may be compromised. Sideloading Google’s apps also carries a high risk of installing an app that has been altered or tampered with in ways that can compromise user security.

In Malaysia, the Huawei devices that run on HMS include the Huawei Mate 30, Mate 30 Pro, Mate 30 Pro 5G, Nova 7i, and for Honor it's the upcoming Honor 9X Pro. Understandably, HMS still has a long way to go in being a reasonable replacement but that doesn't mean you should risk the safety and security of your device to sideload Google apps. So for now, when buying a Huawei and Honor device, do take note of your needs and don't do anything too risky!