Aug 30 AT 1:11 PM Taylor Wimberly 41 Comments

Huawei unveils Emotion UI because stock Android is too confusing


If you find Android too confusing, Huawei might have the right device for you. Today the Chinese company unveiled their new Emotion UI that will be making its way to Android devices later this year.

The new UI is designed to fix the one thing about Android that the company found confuses new users. Huawei has decided to remove the app drawer that is found in stock Android and most manufacturer skins. Instead they will just dump all your app icons and widgets into a unified home screen, similar to Apple’s iOS.

The Emotion UI is supposed to reinforce Huawei’s user-centric design philosophy, “Design with Empathy.” The company says, “Emotion UI improves usability and provides a much simpler navigational experience for users. It enables users to customize the design and functions of their smartphone home page to suit their personal needs, in addition to simplifying folder functions for easier management of applications.”

We wish manufactures would include the stock Android experience as an option, or better yet just kill all custom skins, but don’t expect that to happen anytime soon. Every company feels the need to differentiate their Android devices from the competition, and as long as customers keep buying up custom skinned devices by the millions the trend will continue.

Check out Huawei’s Emotion UI in the video below and let us know what you think. Does Huawei’s UI look like it’s easier to use?


Source: Huawei

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • Jeremy

    or install Big Launcher

  • Dennis

    i actually like the ease of use, looks cool

    • NeoJesus

      That’s the beauty of Android. Even a small company like Huawei can put out something that could actually compete with the big boys.

      I just hope they patented the sh*t out of all their UI ideas, or else we’ll be seeing some of them in IOS 7.

      • Zooms

        Huawei? ‘small company’?

        It is actually designed in Asia favorite design philosophy – an Ace for skin customization. Samsung is actually not far away from that neither if you notice they like to dump all unnecessary features in their version of Android, but it is done more tasteful with a mature global team.

        Anyway, it will be a surprise for me if this goes well in EU or US market.

  • Robert Jakiel

    So in essence they added a help menu for stuff, made it a factory themeable UI with some super widgets. Otherwise it looks just like the regular launcher with some snazzy icons.

  • XanLoves

    I don’t really see how it’s any easier to use than most other skinned UI’s. It looks like Sense 4.1 widget selection (with the screen previews at the top) but then the home screen looks like a mess metro style layout.



    Naw not needed !

  • Bpear96

    I bit like MIUI, love the fact that it has a theme engine.

    • iamXiV92a

      Yes the theme element looks really nice!

  • tN0

    They are using the Samsung font?

    Sorry, but all this stuff made be switch to Windows Phone on my smartphone.

  • Prince77

    Well lets see Apple go after them for using their Idea.

  • Steve Heinrich

    Removed the app drawer?! I am aware MIUI does this (which I’m not a fan of) but the simpler things get, the more stupid people seem to become. There are some concepts that are easily learned on a device and that is good for you. It expands your mind. The app drawer was one of them. “Where are my apps? Oh, there they are.” Bam! Learned! Not hard.

    As far as custom UIs… as much as I don’t like custom UIs on Android, they do lend to innovation. Some of the functionality that makes sense from these alternate skins/interfaces can sometimes be integrated nicely into the stock experience. So, while I don’t use anything but stock I don’t frown upon people trying different experiences.

  • Monochrome

    This is MIUI, tweaked by Huawei. There is nothing original about this. If anything, it’s a blatant ripoff. So much for all the supposed innovation coming out of Huawei.

    If anyone doesn’t believe me, just search youtube for MIUI. You’ll see what I’m talking about.

    • jlawou

      It’s totally MIUI

    • Steve Heinrich

      It is indeed.

    • Bpear96

      Well MIUI is actually open source now, so it may as well actually be based on MIUI

  • Dan Hamilton

    It looks nice, but not easier. Seems like just another custom UI to me.

  • MMcCraryNJ

    I feel that Huawei is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist.

    I mean really, how hard is the concept of having a separate app drawer and home screens? I would like to see the results of their “poll” that show the extreme amounts of confusion Android users have with this setup.

  • Bpear96

    For my mom MIUI is much easier for her to use. Not saying stock android is hard to use. But for some reason, she was always asking me how to do simple things. I showed her MIUI one day, she said she wanted it. So i put it on here Xperia Arc S, and she loves it, hasn’t asked me for much help since. Also Sony ICS FW is pretty damn laggy on the arc s. ICS miui is based on stock sony FW for the arc. I put a Miui based on CM7.2 , and man it is actually pretty fast :D. Will probably put a CM10 based MIUI on here phone when its stable.

    Brought this up since this UI is so much like MIUI (or maybe it actually is based on miui considering its open source)

  • Tim Cook

    A better choice would be to buy my iOS devices.
    Apple has invented notification center/bar we were just testing it for bugs.
    Thats why old android notification center is terrible.

    Apple CEO Timothy M. Cook

    • Bpear96

      How was old android notification center terrible? More like old iOS notification center was terrible, had to take some cues from android to get it right!

    • Hollandia

      Hi Tim Cook, looking for something else to sue? Oh sorry, just another guy that thinks he’s cool and pretend he’s Apple’s CEO. Nice :D BTW the old android notification wasn’t terrible, but either very good, lets say some place between.

    • Nate B.

      You possibly can’t be a CEO with that DUMB IGNORANT comment you just left. Testing it for bugs? Nothing is fancy about it. Should of had it from the start. Android did and they just improved on it along the way. Wait. Your just wanting attention. Should of known.

  • Nate B.

    So they took from other launchers in the Android community and added over the native look and called it “easier”? Wow. It does pretty much the same as Stock Android. They just slapped a skin over it. So they would rather lie to come up with a reason to skin something. It doesn’t look attractive at all either.

  • Ironzey Lewis

    They lost me at “Similar to iOS”.

  • uknowme

    Blah, not needed in my opinion.

  • Marty

    Really? Stock Android is confusing? I’m convinced that people who say that are brain damaged. It’s already simple, so simple that it doesn’t require an in-phone tutorial. This UI seems to have just confused the hell out of everything. Thanks but no thanks. I wish that these HW manufacturers would just build good hardware and leave the operating system alone.

    • charlie88

      I actually think Gingerbread was simpler than ICS. ICS has too much going on sometimes. Action Bars, top or bottom? Three dots for settings in the action bar or next to the navigation buttons? Which settings are gonna be there? Where are the widgets? On practically every Android phone you could long press and add a widget. The contacts app is so abnormally complicated. You have so many settings. Warnings about read-only contacts, joining contacts is a pain. Once you join them you cant remove just one account but you have to remove all of them, delete the other account, not worry about the read only warning, then go and join the accounts again. Then you have the different tabs, a groups tab. But contacts to display is kind of the same but different, because you can display more contacts. But some accounts in contacts to display show up in the groups, others don’t. Too complicated.

      The whole “little icon in the upperlefthand corner” that takes you back to the original app screen, but the text you press next to it takes you one level up. But sometimes it still works differently than pressing the back button. Etc. etc. etc. It’s easy for us geeks, but someone coming from an iPhone or even worse a BlackBerry, really has a learning curve.

      Our strength is the unbelievable power and unlimited featurs we have, but sometimes we really lack ease of use.

  • h0ruza


  • kilmas

    i liked the interface,i will love to try that out

  • JGarrido

    Looks an awful lot like MIUI to me.

  • Nathan D.

    Honestly, I think the skins on Android make it more confusing then the regular stock Android. I haven’t seen one person get confused by regular android, but I haven’t seen one person get confused with skins either. But I noticed that people with the skin took bit longer to understand their phone and they ask me questions.

  • ihatefanboys

    So there are idiots out there that are actually confused by pressing a virtual icon on the bottom of the screen to find their app draws ? and we’re actually catering to them ? and catering to them in a way that replicates everything we hate about the iphone, a cluttered mess of icons on a screen that can be used for much more than staring at icons ? excuse me while i vomit……bleeeechhhhhhhh…..

  • themost

    I can smell it already….Apple v. Huawei.

  • Ivan Todorov

    I don’t know how easy it is this UI but the music on the video sounds like children learning how to use soundmixing software. And also Huawei got some cool ideas from Cyanogenmod :)

  • tottyrice

    oh wow i actually like how it looks visually

  • charlie88

    I actually like the idea of the themes. I think Holo is nice, but some people don’t wanna live in Tron-world. I don’t know if I’d change, but I liked the lighter and more colorful UI of some Sense versions. TouchWiz again is way too much. But it’s nice having some white sometimes. Feels as if you can relax. With Holo, I feel sometimes like it’s too dark. Everywhere I can, I choose Holo Light. And some of the screens here are actually pretty nice. Android can learn something from that. Holo is awesome for young guys like me, but my mother would think it’s somehow trying to copy Tron. Which to her is stupid and not really attractive at all, feels depressing sometimes. It’s not light and airy, but dark and gloomy.

    Furthermore, I must admit… I kind of hate having to go into the app drawer, go to the widgets and choose them one by one. I really miss just long pressing and adding a widget.

    Plus I think making the apps “swipe/scroll into” the widgets kind of defeats the purpose of using tabs. In one place you can swipe tabs and get directly into the next tabs, in other places you can’t . Then again in some cases you swipe and get to the next page, without changing the tab. And then you swipe over into the other tab. It’s not consistent at all.

    They should’ve made it simpler… Swipe and go to tabs, browse the apps and widgets vertically. That’s a “tab”. Anyways, bring back long press! Or a faster way to add widgets. And better previews, I really think HTC’s Sense was better. HATE TouchWiz’s implementation though.

  • masterpfa

    I wouldn’t agree with the ease of use. OK for some but seemed like the illegitimate child of Sense and Touchwiz.
    No better than stock but gives those who want it a choice (if stock is also an option)

  • Sammy

    I like the regular UI more. I actually don’t like Apple products for their IOS.

  • yoyoy

    Emotion UI sucks.

  • LAslo

    huawei phones are really good for the price, but this ui is shit, plain and simple, is fucking crap, absolutely and utter feces covered in horse shit. i chose android to customize the SHIT out of my phone, and they present me with a copy paste of ios and windows 8!? excuse me? android confusing? i dont know what the yellow sticks over asia think but android is anything but confusing. This assholes force feed this crap, sure make it a POSSIBILITY for the imbeciles who cant be bothered to have a real ui in their hands, or the idiots who cant afford a lumia or an iphone.

    The worst thing is they are so hard to root and there are no stable ROMS for the huawei, i cant even find a dark theme to use third party toggles on the drop down menu, never again with the huawei fucked mentality.