June 04, 2014

Samsung Announces Its First Tizen Smartphone

Samsung has taken one more step toward breaking away from the Android (NewsAlert) mold. According to online art news source Digital Arts, the South Korean mobile device manufacturer recently announced its new Samsung Z smartphone that houses the Linux-based Tizen operating system.

Most Samsung phones are known for utilizing Google (News Alert)'s Android platform. Although Android is largely open source, Google still holds a lot of ground in the smartphone market because of how it provides official Android apps — those that users find easy to use and therefore popular. The drawback from companies such as Samsung (NewsAlert), however, is that they have limited power to create apps that utilize similar services, such as those that compete with Google Maps, without creating tension between their own companies and Google itself. Google's policies can even restrict app development to a certain extent.

Tizen allows Samsung to begin developing a platform of its very own. This means that Samsung can create its own Maps clone that might, for instance, use an “open” maps project that itself is entirely open source. By using Tizen instead of Android, Samsung provides itself with a greater amount of freedom, and it also creates freedom for developers interested in the platform.

Developers can write Tizen apps in HTML5, reports Digital Art, and that can open up smartphones on the platform to better interaction with the Internet. The phone is expected to hit markets in Russia come this autumn, and it should expand to other parts of the globe from that point forward.

Samsung is also known for manufacturing televisions, and it reportedly plans to make use of Tizen in that arena as well. A company spokesman remarked that Samsung wants to release Tizen-based televisions at some point in 2015. Ahead of that launch—this July—analysts expect the company to release a software development kit for the new televisions. In a few years when Tizen TVs and smartphones are more prevalent in the global market, such smartphones could easily interact with their counterpart big screens and create a more connected home for interested individuals.

Edited by Maurice Nagle


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