Is The World Ready for New Mobile Operating Systems?: Tizen and Others



This is one upcoming mobile OS that I don’t know much about as a result of both lack of interest (my experience with Bada, from which it borrows a lot, on the Wave II was never good hence my misgivings) and also there not being so many announcements about it. However it will be folly to wish it away since it is backed by the leader in mobile devices, Samsung, and as such will benefit from the juggernaut’s huge global presence and marketing prowess unlike all the other upcoming mobile OSs.

The Samsung Wave II running Bada which Samsung has retired in favour the upcoming mobile OS, Tizen. PHOTO:

Tizen, backed by Samsung, is an open source OS that is also based on a Linux kernel under the patronage of the Linux Foundation. There were reference devices running Tizen at MWC that did not (obviously) excite the ever expectant tech press but which, in my opinion, served to highlight intent rather than mark the arrival of a rival platform to the existing ones.

While there isn’t much about it out already, there are indications that we might be seeing Tizen-running devices before 2013 wraps up. It is being touted as being part of Samsung’s long term strategy to cut down on its over-reliance on Android as its lead platform and it will be interesting to see how this story goes. If indeed this happens to be true then the OS we are not yet screaming from the rooftops about could be the one we spend endless hours writing about in coming years. Still, we’ll have to wait to see how it all goes.

So serious is this Tizen OS project that Samsung has opted out of any plans to release Firefox OS devices just to focus on it. It has also wrapped up Bada OS to concentrate all its efforts on Tizen. Will Tizen live up to our expectations? Does it have a chance in the already crowded field? Yes. Samsung is the most successful Android OEM and wrestled Nokia from the perch as the leader of all mobile devices sold in a calendar year in 2012 and as such it is likely that any platform it backs will surely get some ready market. In that light, Tizen is still the upcoming OS to watch since it is backed by a well-oiled partner.



The HP TouchPad running WebOS. LG promises to breathe a new life into the previously dead mobile OS. PHOTO: TechOpsGuys

It is worth noting that other mobile OSs like WebOS still exist. After having been in the cold since being abandoned by HP (which has since joined the Android camp and even released a tablet), WebOS was recently dusted off the shelves by LG which plans to use it in its TVs. No one is sure whether we’ll see WebOS on mobile devices anytime soon but it is a possibility.


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