What is EMUI?

EMUI is the operating system created by the Huawei mobile phone brand. This is a custom operating system, also called a “customization layer.” This customization layer allows you to improve some features of smartphones and offers very interesting design alternatives. We explain what EMUI is and what it is for in this article.

EMUI, short for EmotionUI, is a modification of Huawei’s operating system. Actually, it is a customization layer that modifies various components of Android systems for Huawei. 

Many mobile phone brands, such as Xiaomi or Samsung, have their own customization layers, capable of modifying the appearance of the original phone systems and offering some improvements in the User Experience. This is possible because the Android operating system is what is called “open source”, so manufacturers have access to the source code of the application and can make updates and improvements that are adapted to the Huawei program.

In this sense, Huawei’s is one of the densest that exists, something that began to change as a result of the appearance of EMUI 10, which reduces the design load. One of the main features of EMUI is that it includes many unique features not found in Android systems. 

Application launcher and menu

Despite Huawei’s continuous updates, one of the main differences that EMUI maintains with Android is the application drawer. In the Huawei launcher, this button has been removed and all the applications appear in the foreground, allowing you to scroll through the different screens or, if you prefer, group the apps into folders.

Also the interface of Huawei mobiles is different, thanks to the customization layer. In this sense, the Chinese brand has its own typography and a design with denser texts. Similarly, some of the usual phone functions are displaced and organized differently, which can be a bit disconcerting when switching between mobile operating systems.


One of the main advantages of having a layer like EMUI is that it makes it much easier to customize the different elements. In this sense, since the arrival of EMUI 9.1 it is very easy to change the themes, fonts, icons and wallpapers, being able to download different themes from the Huawei library.

The Chinese brand offers its own store where there is a very large amount of content. In the customization store it is possible to find Huawei’s own themes and content, which is usually paid, along with others created by the users themselves and shared for free.

Huawei gestures and special EMUI functions

One of Huawei’s features are “gestures” or shortcuts, which allow the user to perform certain actions with their phone, using only one hand. For example, take screenshots by tapping with three fingers on the screen or by tapping with your knuckles.

In this sense, the oldest versions of EMUI allow you to take a screenshot by touching the surface with a knuckle or to record on video what happens on the mobile screen if you touch it with two knuckles. The most modern versions allow you to do the same, but by dragging three fingers down the screen.

Another function of Huawei is to create “twin applications”. This is an option that allows you to clone an app, such as WhatsApp, to create multiple profiles, something that can be very useful for users who manage different social network accounts. 

On the other hand, the most modern EMUIs have the “Move to ear” option, which allows you to configure the phone with 4 smart options that allow you to answer a call automatically when you bring the phone to your ear or, if you prefer, call a contact to appear on the screen without having to press the call button.

Also, mimicking Android’s split-screen functionality, with which the user can interact with two apps at the same time, EMUI supports splitting the screen. To do this, you must drag your knuckle horizontally across it, so that you can work with two different applications at the same time.

Finally, it is possible to open certain applications or perform actions by drawing different letters with your knuckles on the screen. In this sense, drawing an “e” will open the browser that has been configured by default. If an “M” is drawn, the music player will open, while if a “C” is drawn, we will directly enter the camera application. Finally, with the “W” will open the weather application.

These shortcuts can be modified from the operating system settings, so it would be possible to change the access of the letter “W” to open WhatsApp instead of a weather application.

Simple mode and travel mode

EMUI has a “simple mode” which is a simplified version of its interface, with larger text and icons. This mode is very useful for older people who are unfamiliar with mobile phones and touch interfaces. The best thing about this functionality is that once activated, all installed applications are transformed.

Finally, the “travel mode” that locks the mobile screen to avoid distractions, showing only the phone’s call button. This mode has a “Trip Tracking” with which to analyze the route and times.

You can see that EMUI is a very complete customization layer, which offers users a wide range of new features and improvements. Also, now that Huawei is banned from using Google apps and systems, EMUI has become its only operating system.

In this sense, although a mobile phone is always a good gift, it is not necessarily the best idea for the little ones, who need toys that stimulate their creativity and motor skills, such as a Playmobil Western, which will help them develop their imagination and their social skills, playing with their friends with these fun figures.

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