Samsung and Intel’s Android alternative Tizen OS unveiled
After more than a year in the making Intel and Samsung’s Tizen OS finally gets official, and it’ll be coming to Samsung and Huawei handsets in 2013
Tizen OS, a new platform backed by Samsung and Intel, got its first official outing at MWC 2013 this week. Tipped as an upstart alternative to Android and a backup plan for Samsung, if you will, Tizen OS already has thousands of applications in place and will power high-end devices from Samsung and Huawei in 2013.
Spearheaded by the Tizen Association – a mix of Intel, Samsung, developers, and networks – the new open-source platform joins the likes of Ubuntu, Firefox OS, and BlackBerry 10 in 2013’s growing range of brand new mobile platforms.
UK network Orange has already confirmed that it will be selling Tizen-powered handsets from Huawei and Samsung in 2013. Japan’s NTT DoCoMo network will be the first to release a Tizen-powered device in 2013, according to CNET. That as-yet-unnamed handset will be from Samsung.
NTT DoCoMo and Orange execs also confirmed that Tizen OS-powered handsets, unlike their Firefox OS-powered counterparts, would be high-end smartphones aimed at taking on Apple’s iOS, Microsoft’s Windows Phone, and Google’s Android OS head on. Although cheaper devices will be release in emerging markets in 2014, according to Orange.
Tizen OS does feature elements of Samsung’s Bada OS, the platform that powered Samsung’s Wave series of smartphones. Because of this, many market watchers are speculating that Samsung will simply fold its largely unsuccessful but now open source Bada platform inside Tizen. Officially, Samsung has not yet decided the fate of its Bada OS.
In other platform-related news, Samsung also told reporters at MWC 2013 that it would not be building a smartphone powered by Mozilla’s Firefox OS, according to CNET. Samsung apparently considered the HTML5-based OS but opted to go with the approach it thinks is most likely to succeed: Android, Windows Phone, and Tizen.
We’ll be going hands-on with the Tizen developer handset at MWC later on today, so stay tuned for that and more from Europe’s biggest and best mobile tech expo. Sign up to the KYM Twitter and Facebook feeds for up-to-minute updates.