Samsung to offer open source smartphone

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Leading mobile devices brand Samsung Electronics, in coordination with its partners, is expected to offer a smartphone powered by the Tizen operating system (OS) this year, according to Japan’s Daily Yomiuri.

Partners involved in the Tizen OS include Intel Corp, Japanese carrier NTT Docomo Inc, NEC Corp, Panasonic, France Telecom, the UK’s Vodafone Group PLC and other European mobile phone service firms, reports say.

A report from the Daily Yomiuri also revealed that Tizen is eyeing becoming a platform that will have the power to rival Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS.

Tizen is essentially a Linux-based OS that came about from the demise of Nokia’s MeeGo. Intel,  one of the original developers of MeeGo, and Samsung Electronics took over the development of the platform. This project is also being supervised by the Linux Foundation.

Notably, Tizen is perceived as more open than the Android OS, which has displeased some smartphone firms due to its restrictions such as the ban on huge modifications to its underlying platform. The various firms involved with Tizen also envision the OS becoming a viable alternative to Apple’s closed operating system and Google’s Android.

Although Samsung’s share in the smartphone market has surged thanks to the Android OS, the Korean giant is undertaking the Tizen project in an effort to diversify and not become too dependent on Google’s platform.

Apart from smartphones, Tizen can also be utilised on other devices such as TVs and tablets. Interestingly, Samsung is banking on operating systems capable of running applications on other devices.

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