Tizen takes aim at Android’s open-source heart, signs on 36 new partners

November 18, 2013
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Tizen

Samsung may be the top Android device manufacturer in the world, with the South Korean conglomerate being the only Android OEM to boast incredible sales and profit numbers, year after year, quarter after quarter. Even with this level of success, it has become increasingly evident over the the past several years that Samsung is looking to move on from Android, or at the very least, desires to have a firm and viable contingency in place. Be it the complete lack of mention of Android during the Samsung Galaxy S4 launch event, or the inclusion of duplicate apps to take on a number of Google apps such as Translate, Hangouts, and to a smaller extent, the Google Play Store. The biggest indication that Samsung is looking for alternatives to Android? Tizen.

After what seemed like a shaky start, support and development of Tizen has been picking up steam as of late. Most recently, Samsung held the inaugural Tizen Developer Summit last week, and announced that 36 new partners have come on-board. These include a number of big names such as Panasonic, Sharp, eBay, McAfee, Nokia, Intel, TrendMicro, and many more. These new partnerships are indicative of Samsung’s intention to to attract a wide range of partners from different industry segments, targeted towards consumer electronics beyond smartphones and tablets. You can find the full list in the press release below.

Why Samsung, why?

Tizen Handset CNET

Tizen is an open source, standards based software platform aimed towards various network carriers and device manufacturers. That may sound very similar to how Android is described, but unlike Android, which is ultimately controlled entirely by Google, Tizen is more conventionally open source, and is managed by the Steering Committee of the Tizen Association, led by Samsung and Intel. While more and more partners may continue to join this effort, Samsung will play a big role in the development of the OS, the kind of control the company would never have with Android.

Another major reason for Samsung’s interest in Tizen is its application beyond just smartphones and tablets, with the expectation of the OS to be a part of connected “smart” electronics on a mass scale. In fact, the only commercially available Tizen device at the moment is the Samsung NX300M camera.

The Tizen OS promises to be the most open and comprehensive software platform available for those companies wishing to target the consumers of connected devices
Trevor Cornwell, Founder and CEO, appbackr inc

Apple, Microsoft (with Nokia), and Google (with Motorola) control both hardware and software aspects of their devices, meaning that Samsung needs Tizen to move ahead from its role as just a hardware manufacturer. With Tizen, Samsung will also be able to tap into new revenue streams from apps, media, and more similar to what is available from the Google Play Store, without losing out on some of the profits, as it now does to Google.

What’s next

Quite a few heavy hitters in here, don't you think?

Quite a few heavy hitters in here, don’t you think?

With Samsung announcing multiple new partnerships that include game developers, additional network carriers, and more electronics manufacturers, it looks like the company is getting ready to make a splash with Tizen in 2014. While previous reports suggested the availability of a high-end Tizen smartphone in the final quarter of 2013, Samsung also mentioned that the launch date of such as device has been pushed to early 2014. This also gives time for developers to get their apps ready in time for the launch, which Samsung has been encouraging, and the point of the Tizen Developer Summit that concluded last week. While nothing has been announced yet, it will also be interesting to see what sort of consumer oriented technology we will see debut with Tizen OS in 2014.

That being said, Samsung is far away from dumping the OS that has been the cause for the exponential rise of the company’s mobile focused divisions over the last several years. Samsung is the only (non-Google) company to have found the pot of gold at the end of the Android rainbow, and that is something no company would be foolish enough to give up. Let us know your thoughts on Tizen, and on Samsung down below in the comments, we always love hearing what you think!

Show Press Release

TIZEN ASSOCIATION LAUNCHES PARTNER PROGRAM WITH 36 NEW MEMBERS AIMED AT ACCELERATING DEVELOPMENT AND COMMERCIALIZATION OF THE TIZEN OPERATING SYSTEM

Companies from All Segments of the Mobile and Connected Device Ecosystems Become Tizen Association Partners to Collaborate on the Ongoing Development of the Tizen Project and Platform

Seoul, Korea-November 11, 2013 – Today the Tizen Association announced the launch of a partner program aimed at broadening support of the Tizen Platform across a more diverse set of connected device manufacturers, operators, application developers and independent software vendors (ISVs). The Tizen Association is an industry consortium that supports the development of an open source software platform and operating system – Tizen. Tizen supports a wide range of connected devices. The program launched today at the Tizen Developer Summit in Seoul, Korea with 36 new members. Each of the new members has the potential to join relevant Tizen Association Working Groups and to participate in Tizen Association meetings, giving them more insight and potential input into the development of the Tizen Operating System (OS).

“The Tizen OS is attracting support from all segments of the connected device ecosystem, with manufacturers, operators, developers and ISVs joining to add their voice and expertise to the development of this open and collaborative platform,” said Ryoichi Sugimura, a Tizen Association Board Member from NTT DOCOMO. “One of the biggest benefits of Tizen to partners is the absence of application or feature mandates, allowing the OS to be customized based on what it is best for the end customer. This allows operators and some device manufacturers to select the provider of features and services that makes the most sense given the type of device, the location of the customer and the most popular use cases for that device. By democratizing this portion of the product development, Tizen is driving increased innovation and competition in the industry.”

The 36 new members, alphabetically, are:

  • 11 Bit Studios
  • ACCESS
  • appbackr
  • AppCarousel
  • ArtSpark Holdings
  • Celsys Inc.
  • Citymaps
  • Crucial Tec
  • eBay
  • F@N Communications
  • Goo Technologies
  • HERE, a Nokia business
  • HI Corporation
  • Igalia S.L.
  • KeyPoint Technologies
  • KONAMI
  • Konantech
  • McAfee
  • Mobica
  • Monotype Imaging Inc.
  • Mutecsoft
  • Neos Corporation
  • NTT Data MSE
  • Open Mobile
  • Panasonic
  • PCPhase
  • Quixey
  • Reaktor Fusion
  • Sharp
  • Symphony Teleca
  • Systena
  • The Weather Channel
  • Tieto
  • TrendMicro
  • TuneIn Radio
  • YoYo Games

“The Tizen OS promises to be the most open and comprehensive software platform available for those companies wishing to target the consumers of connected devices,” said Trevor Cornwell, Founder and CEO, appbackr inc., a Tizen Association Partner. “The Association’s commitment to support HTML5 applications, combined with their vision that extends beyond the smartphone and tablet ecosystem to a wider array of other connected device segments, makes it attractive to all types of companies. We look forward to collaborating with the Tizen Association to ensure that all stakeholders can contribute to the development of a platform for this growing market opportunity.”

Other companies interested in joining the Tizen Association Partner Program can visithttp://www.tizenassociation.org. New partners are approved on a rolling basis and the Association welcomes all applications.

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