Feeds

Samsung claims it still plans to ship Tizen phones in Q2

Even without carrier backing, 'a few countries' will get Linux-based mobes

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Hope springs eternal for wannabe Android competitor Tizen, with Samsung saying it plans to ship the first smartphones based on the open source OS in the second quarter of 2014 – carriers' cold feet be damned.

In an interview with Reuters, Samsung senior VP of product strategy Yoon Han-kil said the Korean firm plans to release "at least two" Tizen handsets this year, but admitted that Android "still needs to be [Samsung's] main business."

Samsung has been threatening to ship phones running its Linux-based pet project for a while now. Its problem has been securing support from carriers.

At one time, Samsung claimed that both NTT DoCoMo and Orange had signed on to offer Tizen devices on their networks, but when development delays made the shipping date for a commercial release of the OS uncertain, both carriers pulled out, citing market conditions.

A DoCoMo spokesman went as far as to say "the market is not big enough to support three operating systems at this time" – by which he meant Android and iOS (sorry, Microsoft and BlackBerry), which account for more than 99 per cent of the Japanese smartphone market.

Samsung takes the opposite point of view. Despite being the world's largest vendor of Android phones, the chaebol has been developing Tizen as a hedge against what it sees as Google's growing dominance of the smartphone OS market.

The problem is, as good as it might sound on paper – and on paper, at least, Tizen is already on version 2.2.1 – nobody has ever seen a Tizen phone, aside from a few developer models handed out at conferences.

Oh, Tizen is real enough, all right. Samsung has even shipped devices running it, but so far they have been cameras and smartwatches, not phones.

Meanwhile, Jolla and Mozilla have already beat Samsung to market with real-world devices running Linux-based open source mobile platforms of their own – Jolla addressing the midrange to high end of the market and Mozilla attacking the low end – and Ubuntu's smartphone variant is also waiting in the wings.

Given so much competition (including Apple and Google, two heavily entrenched rivals with deep pockets), market success for Tizen at this point seems like a vanishingly long shot.

Ever the optimist, however, Samsung says it will release two Tizen models in the coming months, including one aimed at high-end customers and a second that will be more of a mid-priced item. Yoon told Reuters that if Tizen devices can reach around 15 per cent of Samsung's total shipments, the Korean firm will consider the OS a success.

Just don't necessarily expect them to arrive in a carrier's retail store near you.

"We have changed our strategy and will release the phones in a few countries where we can do well," Yoon said. Further details were not available. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER
First browser to protect networks' bandwith using official spec
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.