VideoLAN, the group behind VLC Player, has decided to blacklist Huawei smartphones. This means users of Huawei smartphones will no longer be able to download the VLC app from Google Play. The new decision comes as an answer to what VideoLAN calls a "ridiculous policy" employed by Huawei - to kill background apps that are not preloaded by Huawei. Some users who have been affected by the odd restriction reported issues on VideoLAN forums. The users described that VLC's background playback doesn't work on their devices. Some reviews on the Play store also confirm the problem that specifically exists on Huawei phones.
As first spotted by FrAndroid, VideoLAN in a tweet on Wednesday confirmed that it has blacklisted Huawei smartphones from downloading VLC through Google Play. "Their ridiculous policy of killing all background apps (except their own) breaks VLC audio background playback (of course)," the non-profit organisation said in the tweet. An official developer on VideoLAN forums additionally alleged that Huawei has blocked VLC in background through its battery optimisation setting. The developer also asked users who complained about the problem in the forum post to reach the Chinese company for the flaw.
The decision taken by VideoLAN is understandable. After all, users who suffer from VLC issues on their Huawei phone may blame the app developers, resulting in poor ratings on Google Play.
We've reached out to Huawei for a comment on the restriction and will update this space accordingly.
Huawei users who want to get the VLC app on their devices can install its APK file directly from the VideoLAN site. However, that won't solve the issues with background playback. The VLC app has a bunch of useful features such as a wide support for audio and video formats, option to add subtitles to videos, and hardware decoding that all makes it a distinguished option. The app also recently received an update with Chromecast support - making it a useful solution to cast audio or video clips to a compatible HDTV wirelessly.