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Samsung's Tizen mobile OS could signal new competition for Apple's iOS, Google's Android

post #1 of 124
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Apple's iOS and Google's Android have so far dominated the latest wave of mobile computing. Now, Apple's chief rival Samsung appears to be prepping a big push behind its own operating system, one that could have the potential to truly shake up the mobile market where others have failed.

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Pictured: A developer handset running Samsung and Intel's Tizen OS. (image via SlashGear)


Samsung has already revealed that it will be releasing hardware powered by Tizen, an alternative operating system co-developed by Samsung and Intel. Built largely on the Linux Kernel, the Enlightenment Foundation Libraries, and the WebKit runtime, Tizen is said to be scalable to displays from smartphones to in-car systems to smart appliances, and televisions -- all areas where Samsung already maintains a presence or is interested in approaching.

Tizen is a replacement of the MeeGo program Intel initiated with Nokia in early 2010, which was a merging of two efforts to produce an open source mobile platform the two firms had earlier maintained in parallel: Intel's Moblin and Nokia's Maemo.

Samsung previously launched its own internal Bada smartphone platform in 2009, which it began selling in parallel with very similar handset hardware running WP7 or Android.

In January, the South Korean electronics conglomerate confirmed that it will be producing Tizen-based devices, with the first of that line expected to debut sometime later this year. The initial roll-out will be tentative, subject to expansion "depending on market conditions," a Samsung representative told Bloomberg.

That decision is said to have come in response to Google's decision last year to purchase Motorola Mobility, a move that brought Samsung into the uncomfortable position of receiving the software that powers its best-selling devices ? indeed, devices that generate 76 percent of its profits ? from a company that now looks like a competitor.

Tizen, then, serves as a form of insurance should Google's currently open stance with regard to the Android platform look like it's about to change. And Google has been showing indications that it intends to compete more effectively in the mobile hardware space. Since taking over Motorola, Google has staffed its upper echelons with former Google executives and personnel the company knows it can coordinate with. On the surface, Google continues to say it will treat Motorola as equal to any other Android partner. Reports have emerged, though, that Google is working on a "game-changer" phone within Motorola, an "X Phone" meant to reestablish the faltering device maker and take on not only Apple but Google's top partner Samsung as well.

Razrs M
Google hopes the "X Phone" will break Motorola's trend of serviceable but uninspiring handsets.


From the Apple end of the equation, Samsung's move toward Tizen is more a move toward achieving parity. As Apple CEO Tim Cook explained earlier this week, the company's success in the new generation of computing is due to its decades of experience handling all aspects of the machines it produces. "If you look at skills," Cook said, "Apple is in a unique and unrivaled position. Apple has skills in software, in hardware, and in services."

Samsung is aware of this, and ? ever content to follow the market leader ? is moving to replicate Apple's model as best it can. Company representatives are saying all the right things in the media, noting ever so sagely now that true quality in the mobile experience comes from a melding of software and hardware, a mantra Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer also converted to in the months before revealing the Surface.

Samsung realizes that much of its future profit growth in the handset sector will have to come from the unique value it builds into its own devices, and that value has to come from from software and services, and Tizen is a means of getting closer to that goal. With Tizen, the company will have a much bigger say in the direction of the platform than it currently does with Android, thanks in large part to its role in co-developing the operating system, as well as timely financial donations to associations guiding the platform.

The company has also expanded other operations in the software segment, opening innovation centers in Silicon Valley and pumping money into small developers. The end goal, of course, is to add value to Samsung's platform, differentiating the company from other Android device manufacturers and improving its already considerable brand image. The degree to which Tizen plays a role in this initiative is uncertain, but Tizen is close enough to Android that Samsung could very likely move its developer farm system to Tizen should it feel the need to do so. There is, in fact, already an application layer that allows Android-developed apps to run on Tizen.

Canalys market share
via Canalys


Of course, a Samsung rep's words from January ? "depending on market conditions" ? figure heavily into where the fledgling operating system goes from here. Together, iOS and Android account for more than nine out of ten smartphone shipments, according to the most recent market research figures. The remaining seven percent or so is divided amongst the assorted lilliputian alternative OSes ? the now-defunct Symbian, Windows Phone, BlackBerry ? with the field only growing more crowded in the next year. When Tizen debuts later this year, it will do so alongside Firefox OS, ex-Nokia employee-produced Jolla, and Ubuntu for Phones.

If any company has the ability to pull off the launch and popularization of a viable and thriving third mobile operating system, it may very well be Samsung. The company has shown that it is willing to spend and spend and spend some more when it comes to marketing. What's more, it's shown that that spending can actually pay off. Whereas the original Galaxy Note was seen as a fluke hit, its successor has gone on to considerable sales, based in large part on wave after wave of ads. The company's Galaxy S III has seen phenomenal sales topped only by Apple's iPhone, and Samsung is working to build a fan base to rival Apple's storied following.

So the next few months are likely to see Apple continuing to iterate its most-profitable OS, Google attempting to claw back relevance in the OS it created, and Samsung perhaps making a push in its own direction. It should make for an interesting year.
post #2 of 124

lol, if that's what it looks like right now, BlackBerry just got a serious confidence boost.

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post #3 of 124
It will hurt Android much more than it hurts Apple.
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post #4 of 124

They're Just Tizen!

 

Another supposedly Open Source OS based on Linux. This time from our friends at Intel.

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post #5 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

lol, if that's what it looks like right now, BlackBerry just got a serious confidence boost.

Apps in a grid pattern how original.

post #6 of 124
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post
Apps in a grid pattern how original.

 

Plastic screen, how… high quality.

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post #7 of 124
I do not see this Tizen capable of succeeding. In fact, I will go on record to predict that Samsung has reached the pinnacle of it's success in terms of market share.
I don't think Apple will eat too much of it's lunch (though I'm expecting some). Samsung is on the top of the junk heap, and I expect other junk to eat into it's share.
post #8 of 124
Unless they do something radically different than having a screen filled with app icons in which the user uses their finger to touch the icon to launch the selected app, I do not see this gaining any ground on Android/iOS.
post #9 of 124
I wonder if this Linux distro allows commercial products and if it does, what the restrictions are and how soon Samsung will willingly violate them. I also wonder how much of this OS Samsung can actually try and patent since it sounds like it's open-source.
post #10 of 124

I hope to God Samsung does this. It would **** over Android so, so badly. 

post #11 of 124
ha-ha-ha. funny article!

sure, Samsung can do well with Tizen on its cheap low end "smartphones" that are really just replacing "feature phones," especially throughout the Developing Second/Third World where Samsung is very strong (replacing Nokia).

but where is the Tizen ecosystem? there ain't any. and without an ecosystem there is no way Tizen can compete with iOS and Android, or even Windows. the future of the top markets globally is all about ecosystems - smoothly integrated media, web/cloud services, apps, and more. Samsung sells a lot of washing machines and refrigerators too, but they don't help. and its "smart TV" line hasn't made a difference either, because the truth is, consumers don't want/need stand alone smart TV's to fiddle with. they just want them to be the big screen in their convenient ecosystem.

maybe after 5 years of hard work Samsung could build that ecosystem and grow Tizen into something major. who knows. but not anytime soon.
post #12 of 124

Samsung is a bottom feeder in the smartphone industry, except for a few top end models. With Apple, Nokia, etc. moving to other parts providers, I see a possible implode sometime soon. Only time will tell. Speculation on the authors, and mine 1wink.gif here.....

post #13 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

It will hurt Android much more than it hurts Apple.

I agree....considering how many handsets Samsung sells......all running some flavor of Android. If you replaced those numbers with their own mobile OS...it would seem to really hurt Android.

Here are the latestest mobile handsets sold numbers by Gartner:

http://www.gartner.com/newsroom/id/2335616

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post #14 of 124
More mobile fragmentation can only help Apple.
post #15 of 124
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

... a move that brought Samsung into the uncomfortable position of receiving the software that powers its best-selling devices - indeed, devices that generate 76 percent of its profits - from a company that now looks like a competitor.

 

I wonder if Google still claims there's a "firewall" between the Android team and Motorola.

If there is, Google is stupid for not even attempting to give their X Phone an advantage over the competition

If there isn't, then Google has lied and their Android partners (e.g. Samsung) will do well to look elsewhere.

 

 

 

Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Company representatives are saying all the right things in the media, noting ever so sagely now that true quality in the mobile experience comes from a melding of software and hardware,
 

"Melding" software and hardware is just the tip of the iceberg.  You'll need a cross-device ecosystem plus a robust, pervasive, international infrastructure.  You know, like the iOS + OS X ecosystem and the iTunes + iCloud infrastructure.  An ecosystem and infrastructure more or less like the ones Apple started working on before the first iPod was released in 2001.  

 

iTunes came first.  Your infrastructure will also need to come first, otherwise your devices will be attempting to fly in a vacuum.  

Oops.  Good luck with that, Samsung.

 

 

 

Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

With Tizen, the company will have a much bigger say in the direction of the platform than it currently does with Android, thanks in large part to its role in co-developing the operating system, as well as timely financial donations to associations guiding the platform.
 

Samsung has two choices: 1. fork Android and create their own proprietary, closed, tuned version of it for their own hardware, or 2. dump Android in favor of Tizen, which they can also tune for their own hardware.  This goes back to the "melding" of software and hardware.  Something that Google either doesn't know about or doesn't care about.  Meanwhile, Samsung could keep their UI more or less the same as it is now, while switching the OS out from under it to Tizen.

 

The process of switching to Tizen will be made easier by the fact that Tizen can run Android-developed apps.  That could work well in the interim, kind of like how emulators like Rosetta worked for Apple during the Intel processor transitions.  After that, the Android apps would be replaced with native Tizen apps for performance and to take advantage of Tizen's more advanced features.


Edited by SockRolid - 2/14/13 at 10:23am

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post #16 of 124

This is likely only a basic risk-mitigation strategy.  Samsung is 100% dependent on Android, so it makes sense to invest in a fall-back.  But I expect this will be as relevant as all the talk about BeOS back in the day.  Or as someone else just said, this could be the OS for the basic free phones.

 

Poor Microsoft trying to be number 3 in the mobile OS might have some competition.

post #17 of 124
Given the quality of Samsung's TV -- a business they've been in for a very long time -- 'software' which is clunky, unintuitive, and slow, Ive is unlikely to be losing much sleep over this.
post #18 of 124
Samsung may very well be able to oust Google Android from Samsung products. The problem for Samsung is that Google Android has an well known and accepted ecosystem whereas Samsung does not.

Software and Services:
Gmail
Google+
Google Hangouts
Google Maps
Google Now
Google Play
Google Wallet

Hardware:
Google TV
Nexus Q


Here are some images of Tizen.




Notably, Samsung Software and Services are highly disappointing as well:

Music Hub
S Beam
S Cloud
S Voice
post #19 of 124
The Meego's app store was called AppsUp so does that mean Titzen's store will be called TitzUp.
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post #20 of 124
It's amazing just how big of an impact Apple has had on the mobile market. Not only did they redefine mobile computing, it seems like the entire mobile industry is moving towards hardware software integrated devices; Samsung, Microsoft, Google, etc... It was only a couple of years ago when companies dumped proprietary operating systems to move to the "PC model" of licensing the OS.

For the doubters, Tizen can take off just as fast as Android did. Most of these people have NO loyalty to an operating system. They just want a phone that works. If sales people start pushing Tizen, then it will sell. Samsung spends tons of money for sales commissions, how do you think their devices sell in the first place? There's nothing special about them over any other Android phone.

As side note... curious that they use OHA (Open Handset Alliance) here instead of Google as every other report does. Would also like to know if they count non-OHA "Android" distros in that statistic?
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Disclaimer: The things I say are merely my own personal opinion and may or may not be based on facts. At certain points in any discussion, sarcasm may ensue.
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post #21 of 124
News Flash:

Schwinn's latest bicycle could signal new competition for Ferrari. Woo hoo!
post #22 of 124
Tarzan... Lord of the Jungle!

Tizen... Good Lord!...

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post #23 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

lol, if that's what it looks like right now, BlackBerry just got a serious confidence boost.

I'm not sure any news about Titzen will counteract the news that Jim Balsillie has sold every single share of his Blackberry nee RiM stock.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

They're Just Tizen!

I prefer tits out. 1tongue.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by malax View Post

This is likely only a basic risk-mitigation strategy.  Samsung is 100% dependent on Android, so it makes sense to invest in a fall-back.  But I expect this will be as relevant as all the talk about BeOS back in the day.  Or as someone else just said, this could be the OS for the basic free phones.

Poor Microsoft trying to be number 3 in the mobile OS might have some competition.

It's certainly a great idea. It's too bad that HP, Dell, et al. didn't invest and develop back up plans when they got in bed with Windows. Now they are struggling to play catchup from disadvantageous positions.

I understand Samsung investing in Titzen — Apple invested in two teams for a mobile OS, one built on PixoOS and one on OSX, the difference being that Samsung is actively using both of theirs — but I think forking Android and taking all their Samsung customers with them is more likely in the long run. This would not mean that Android apps wouldn't work on Samsung's forked Android — even Blackberry expects to run Android apps on BB OS — but they could do more and do it faster, including even offering a curated and safe app store much like Apple that I think would help them market to users that aren't sure which Android phone to buy.

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #24 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Relic View Post

The Meego's app store was called AppsUp so does that mean Titzen's store will be called TitzUp.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post

Tarzan... Lord of the Jungle!

Tizen... Good Lord!...

 

Don't quit your day jobs to become stand-up comics, guys.

post #25 of 124

Party like it's 2008.

post #26 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post

 

 

 

"Melding" software and hardware is just the tip of the iceberg.  You'll need a cross-device ecosystem plus a robust, pervasive, international infrastructure.  You know, like the iOS + OS X ecosystem and the iTunes + iCloud infrastructure.  An ecosystem and infrastructure more or less like the ones Apple started working on before the first iPod was released in 2001.  

 

iTunes came first.  Your infrastructure will also need to come first, otherwise your devices will be attempting to fly in a vacuum.  

Oops.  Good luck with that, Samsung.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Totally agree. In fact, I suspect that , although it could seem provocative, Samsung has no long term product & services strategy. Only Apple really cares about long term customer relationship, all competitors just take customer money, and run away. The order of magnitude in between Samsung products portfolio (even limited to Consumer electronics) on one hand, and Apple products, on the other hand, also shows how much Apple is a focused company. Because it is possible with such a small number, Apple product strategies (and interrelationship) can be carefully thought out. In the other case, each product line lives its own uncoordinated life.

post #27 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by stelligent View Post

Don't quit your day jobs to become stand-up comics, guys.

You ever think about stand-up comedy works?

A comedian will a write a series or jokes or anecdotes then practice them on his own or perhaps in front of friends and family. This is alpha testing and isn't too reliable for several reasons I won't get into but it can help weed out ones that may be too confusing for a general audience to get.

The next step is beta testing the material. This is done with a time window. You not only test your material but your execution which includes timing and delivery. You then review your performance either from the 1st person PoV, audio or video. You see what jokes works and why.

You then repeat this beta test many times swapping the material, changing the order, altering when and how the material is delivered. This is a slow and arduous process to 1) perfect your personality as a comedian, and 2) get the right material and deliver it in the right way for a more major event, like a special on Comedy Central or selling out a theater.

It's not easy and every comedian has failed experiences so I don't get why anyone trying to be entertaining needs to be haggled, especially here where you pay no cover and have no minimum drink order to attend.

Comedy is inherently difficult. If the a joke is too obvious it's not funny except perhaps to children or other immature individuals, which is why adults tend not to like jokes kids think are hysterical. If it's too specialized, like a joke that would require a knowledge of astrophysics, then it's not funny because it's not understood, which is why kids tend to get jokes adults think are hysterical.

It's not just about appealing to a specific audience but about the culture it's delivered to. Musicians can travel all around the world and perform to sold out shows but comedians have a much harder time as language and culture can be difficult barrier to overcome.

Along with the cultural issue is the age of the joke. A joke about Kony that Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert or Bill Maher made a year ago may have been laugh-out-loud funny then but not today. Are you really that much different of a person or does media-based humour simply have a short lifespan?

Finally, there are jokes that are not related to the news but have still expired. Ever see an old man make a joke that you are certain he heard on The Ed Sullivan Show or something like that? You recognize it as a joke as it has the constituent components and you can see how 50 years ago it may have been clever and funny, but today it's simply not. That's the sad reality of comedy. I've tried to sit through the best comedians from the 70's, 80's or 90's. It can be rough. George Carlin talks about human nature a lot so his jokes have held up very well but you'll still a comparison thrown in that would never get used today.


PPS: Comedy Central's The Burn with Jeff Ross is an excellent display of comedic prowess. Ross looks like someone who wouldn't be allowed within 500 feet of a school or playground but he's a nice guy.
Edited by SolipsismX - 2/14/13 at 6:25pm

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post #28 of 124

What does OHA mean?    The other thing that people don't talk about is that most Android phones being sold are STILL old gingerbread phones, which is why about 50% of the Android market is still stuck with 2.x.  

post #29 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

I hope to God Samsung does this. It would **** over Android so, so badly. 

 

This could get really interesting. Most iHaters are Fandroids who love Samsung only because it runs Android. They have shifted loyalties as other hardware device makers rose and fell; see Motorola, HTC, etc. Samsung became their most recent shining knight when it rose up to challenge Apple but it's really all about Android. If Samsung forks Android or goes with Tizen what will these people do? Who will they pin their hopes on for Apple's destruction?

post #30 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacBook Pro View Post

Samsung may very well be able to oust Google Android from Samsung products. The problem for Samsung is that Google Android has an well known and accepted ecosystem whereas Samsung does not.

Software and Services:
Gmail
Google+
Google Hangouts
Google Maps
Google Now
Google Play
Google Wallet

Hardware:
Google TV
Nexus Q


Here are some images of Tizen.




Notably, Samsung Software and Services are highly disappointing as well:

Music Hub
S Beam
S Cloud
S Voice

Google may make it where they support Nexus on their own hardware and not support the OEM versions as well moving forward. Google is just immature as far as knowing how to market an OS with a good roadmap for releasing the OS updates and having these updates readily available on all Android devices. It's just becoming more and more of a mess.  Tizen sounds like another attempt at having their own platform that won't get much support.

post #31 of 124

If Sammy has to use Tizen at some point and quit Android due to Goog/Moto...well, I'd be nervous if I were an investor. This will put Sammy virtually in a future tie with MSFT, BB and other bottom feeders. Because if I'm looking at this from just an average consumer's POV, if I'm pretty used to Android, I'm not likely to go to a Tizen phone, I'll just find another Android handset maker.

 

To put it bluntly, I can buy another cheap plastic phone from any handset maker, most people aren't buying Samsung for the build quality, they're buying because of Android/Advertising/Who knows.

post #32 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

Apps in a grid pattern how original.

 

Yes, boring and common. Humans have been arranging things in a grid for thousands of years.  

 

Some choices  just make sense, though.

 

Remember when Microsoft tried something different... a honeycomb grid in Windows Mobile 6.5?  *shudder*   It was hard to look at it, even though it gave more finger-tap space.  I think it taught everyone to avoid unusual layouts :)

 

post #33 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfiejr View Post

... sure, Samsung can do well with Tizen on its cheap low end "smartphones" that are really just replacing "feature phones," especially throughout the Developing Second/Third World where Samsung is very strong (replacing Nokia).

but where is the Tizen ecosystem? there ain't any. and without an ecosystem there is no way Tizen can compete with iOS and Android, or even Windows. ...

 

Actually, the Android "ecosystem" doesn't matter very much for most Android users, and there are no strong ties. Carriers would happily push Tizen phones on consumers who don't know what they are buying, just like they push Android now: it would just be, "and here's the latest phone from Samsung, the Galaxy S V," and there wouldn't even be a mention of the OS, except to say, "It's got the latest and greatest OS on it, and it comes with all the apps you will ever need."

post #34 of 124

What I find interesting is how earlier this week Tim Cook stressed that Apple was not a hardware company (he said it twice).  I assumed that was basically saying we're not Samsung without using Samsung's name.  I'm sure Samsung is thinking they're big enough now that they don't need to be dependent on Google.  I'd love to see what happens if they say goodbye to Google since they have the biggest piece of Android market share.

post #35 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by KDarling View Post

 

Yes, boring and common. Humans have been arranging things in a grid for thousands of years.  

 

Some choices  just make sense, though.

 

Remember when Microsoft tried something different... a honeycomb grid in Windows Mobile 6.5?  *shudder*   It was hard to look at it, even though it gave more finger-tap space.  I think it taught everyone to avoid unusual layouts :)

 

So what would make someone want to use Tizen over Android?  What's the advantage?

post #36 of 124
Quote:
That decision is said to have come in response to Google's decision last year to purchase Motorola Mobility, a move that brought Samsung into the uncomfortable position of depending on something  from a company that now looks like a competitor.

 

What goes around...

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post #37 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

I hope to God Samsung does this. It would **** over Android so, so badly. 

Yeah, it's the ONE THING Android lovers never say on these forums: "...because Google needs competition."

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post #38 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

What I find interesting is how earlier this week Tim Cook stressed that Apple was not a hardware company (he said it twice).  I assumed that was basically saying we're not Samsung without using Samsung's name.  I'm sure Samsung is thinking they're big enough now that they don't need to be dependent on Google.  I'd love to see what happens if they say goodbye to Google since they have the biggest piece of Android market share.

As long as Google is the default search engine I'm not sure it would matter all that much financially. Difficult to say.

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post #39 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post


Yeah, it's the ONE THING Android lovers never say on these forums: "...because Google needs competition."

Google HAS competition. It's Microsoft. That's the reason Google made Android (and Chrome) a priority in the first place. So far Google's holding their own I think.

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post #40 of 124
I told you Samsung would shaft Google next!
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