Russian mobile operating system based on Android may appear as early as next year
Why has the development of a Russian mobile OS based on Android become a difficult challenge for the largest companies?”
According to businessman “Sberbank”, “VK”, “Yandex” and “Rostelecom” are planning to soon present their developments on the project of a mobile operating system based on the open source Android.
Experts in this field reported that the draft of a modified Russian version of the Android operating system is also under consideration by the Ministry of Digital Transformation, and will soon be presented to the curator in the field of information technology – Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Chernyshenko.
According to industry experts, the key participant in the project is VK, which develops the RuStore app store. The developers of Yandex and Sberbank are also participating in the project, but Rostelecom has not shown much interest, since it already has its own mobile operating system, Avrora, on the basis of which Russian PDAs will soon be available.
The project of a modified version of the Android operating system from Google is formed and controlled by the Center for Expertise and Coordination of Informatization under the Ministry of Digital Transformation. His first developments are scheduled to be presented this spring.
Media sources report that since the beginning of the year, two meetings have been held at the Ministry of Digital Transformation on the mobile operating system development project, where representatives of developers from VK, Yandex, Sberbank, Rostelecom and Open Mobile Platforms were present ( is engaged in the project of the Aurora operating system), Kaspersky Lab (KasperskyOS), Astra Group of Companies (Astra Linux), Basalt SPO (Alt Linux), STC IT ROSA (ROSA OS) and Red Soft (Red OS”), as well as employees of domestic manufacturers of consumer electronics, including Aquarius, F + tech and other companies. During the meetings, the participants expressed the need for active state support for this project.
One of the meeting participants said that at the moment the project of a domestic mobile operating system based on the Android open source code has not been documented, only the initial study and discussion of its stages between interested parties and potential executors is underway.
At the end of last year, it was reported that Sberbank, VK, Yandex and Rostelecom were planning to create a company to develop a mobile operating system based on the open source Android code. The name of the project is not yet known. The mobile platform is expected to be supported by all Android-certified smartphones and will be able to replace the Google Mobile Services (GMS) ecosystem.
Experts believe that such an Android-based OS will be in demand among users in Russia due to its compatibility with a large number of mobile applications. They explained that VK and Sberbank have long been interested in developing an analogue of GMS. In their opinion, “major players are ready to unite to develop the platform” because “everyone who wants their applications to have adequate functionality needs it.” Representatives of VK, Yandex and Rostelecom declined to comment to the media.
However, there is no formal consortium yet, but major players are ready to unite to develop the platform. The new OS will be aimed specifically at the consumer segment, and the Aurora OS, which is being developed by Rostelecom, will mainly be used on smartphones in the public sector.
Chinese Huawei has already gone through a similar one with its Harmony OS based on open Android, the AppGallery application store and the Huawei Mobile Service (HMS) platform. In 2021, the number of AppGallery users reached 580 million people, and 730 million people worldwide use HMS services, 5 million developers are involved in their creation.
However, experts cannot yet determine what budget will be required to develop such an Android-based mobile operating system for Russia. In their opinion, most of the applications of Russian developers have already been adapted for Android, so the costs will not be multibillion-dollar, as is the case with the Aurora OS. It may take no more than a year to create the Android RU OS and the ecosystem for it.