Samsung readying first Tizen devices for 2013 release
Samsung Electronics will release its first smartphones running the Linux-based Tizen operating system later this year.
Japan's Daily Yomiuri reports that Samsung plans to offer Tizen devices through carrier partners including NTT DoCoMo, Vodafone and France Telecom. Sources say the manufacturer is seeking to nurture a Tizen ecosystem to rival Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android and Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS.
Android currently dominates the Samsung device portfolio, although the company also offers smartphones running its own bada OS. Early last year, a Samsung executive said the firm would merge bada with Tizen, but the company quickly backpedaled: "Samsung and other members of Tizen Association have not made a firm decision regarding the merger of bada and Tizen," Samsung said at that time. "We are carefully looking at it as an option to make the platforms serve better for customers."
Targeting multiple device categories including smartphones, tablets, smart TVs, netbooks and in-vehicle infotainment systems, Tizen combines open-source technologies with a standards-based HTML5 development environment, enabling the creation of device-independent, cross-platform mobile applications. The Linux Foundation hosts the Tizen platform, and Samsung and Intel head the technical steering committee developing the OS.
Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S) has said it will support Tizen and Mozilla's forthcoming Firefox mobile OS. "The reason we are excited about supporting those platforms is that we think that these platforms are driving an agenda around HTML5. We wanted to have involvement in it. We want to be completely aware of what HTML5 means for mobile devices," Fared Adib, Sprint's senior vice president of product development and operations, told FierceMobileContent in October. "We are waiting to see how mature these platforms are going to be before we agree to deliver products with manufacturing partners on those platforms."
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